Voters in Madison Heights, Hazel Park decide council members

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison-Park News | Published November 7, 2023

 Shutterstock photo

Shutterstock photo


MADISON HEIGHTS/HAZEL PARK — In the general election Nov. 7, voters in Hazel Park and Madison Heights settled contested council races for their cities.


Madison Heights City Council
In Madison Heights, the mayor Roslyn Grafstein ran unopposed for another two-year term, while newcomer William Mier ran unopposed for one partial term ending Nov. 10, 2025.

The contested race was among five candidates running for three four-year terms on council.

According to unofficial results posted by Oakland County, with 100% of precincts reporting, Emily Rohrbach finished first with 2,342 votes. Quinn Wright was a close second at 2,126 votes, and Sean Fleming came in third with 1,837 votes. All three incumbents will retain their seats on council.

The runners-up were incumbent Toya Aaron, at 1,579 votes, and newcomer Al Gui at 521.

Rohrbach was first elected to the council in 2019. She serves as the director of events at Oakland Thrive, and has a degree in music education, as well as in human resources training and development. She wants to “green” the city with efforts such as planting trees and native gardens, securing environmental grants, and building a long-term sustainability plan. She also wants to develop the city by focusing on parks, the library and service upgrades, and to boost economic growth through small business support and access to resources. She has called for a more inclusive environment where a diverse array of voices is heard at public meetings and represented in city programs, services and policy updates.

“I am grateful to the people of Madison Heights for re-electing me to council,” Rohrbach said via email. “It’s an exciting time to be part of the growth of Madison Heights, and I’m looking forward to working with newly elected Councilor Quinn Wright, Councilman Sean Fleming, and our newest council member, Bill Mier, to continue to bring Madison Heights into the future! Toya Aaron ran a great campaign, and I wish her all the best.”

Wright was appointed to council in November 2021 to fill the vacancy created by the death of Robert Gettings. He is a self-employed financial advisor and studied advertising at Michigan State University. Wright campaigned on community growth, emphasizing the well-being of residents — including seniors — and support for essential services like police and fire. He also called for policies focused on business attraction and retention.

“I’m just so grateful to my city for the opportunity to run, and to have the chance to serve the residents,” Wright said in an email. “This campaign has always been about the residents — always about providing an opportunity to represent the unique and diverse voices in our city. I couldn’t be prouder of this campaign, my family and my community. We ran with integrity, and focused on common-sense governing. 

“My plans moving forward are to help our city grow, focusing on affordable housing and reimagining the possibility of our downtown area,” he said. “I aim to find ways to focus on mental health throughout our city services, and to work with our state representatives to address keeping our taxes reasonable without sacrificing our quality-of-life elements.”

Fleming first joined the council in the fall of September 2021, filling the vacancy created by the resignation of Kymm Clark. He works in telecommunications and is a military veteran who campaigned on improving relations between police and residents, strengthening the police with ongoing training and equipment, and informing residents about crime prevention.  He also said he will work to bring back dog licenses to the city, and to increase the animal shelter’s budget. Fleming also said he’s committed to reducing city costs through the increased use of grants and business collaborations on projects and events.

“I want to thank all of the voters who voted for me. It’s really appreciated that they put their confidence in the work I’m doing at the city, allowing me to continue on,” Fleming said. “I’m going to miss Toya Aaron being on the council. She did an awesome job. I look forward to working with the incoming Bill Mier. And I look forward to continuing to work with our reelected mayor Roslyn Grafstein, as well as my peers Quinn and Emily.” 

Aaron was appointed to the council in April 2022 to fill the vacancy created by the death of Robert Corbett. She is currently employed as a mental health advocate and has degrees in biology and industrial organization psychology. She campaigned on support for police and fire, on creating multigenerational parks and recreational programs for people of all ability levels, on fostering economic growth by promoting small businesses, and developing a co-responder program to assist police officers when engaging people with mental health challenges.

“I want to say thank you to all those who voted for me, especially my mom who stood in the cold for over 12 hours handing out literature for me yesterday (Nov. 7), and my son, family and friends,” Aaron said in an email. 

She said she’s “elated” for Rohrbach, Wright, Fleming and Grafstein, and noted the tough decision voters faced between four incumbents. She said she’s thankful for the learning opportunity and will continue to work with the Library Advisory Board, Madison Heights Parks and Recreation, and the Zoning Board of Appeals. Aaron plans to run again in 2025.

Gui works in the education field and has degrees in mathematics as well as administration and innovative leadership. He campaigned on improving quality of life in Madison Heights, and called for responsible spending, and strict monitoring of trash pickup and water quality. He also wants the city to focus on attracting high-paying jobs, providing more outdoor activities for senior citizens and other age groups, and working closely with the Madison and Lamphere school districts to improve students’ academic performance. Combating human trafficking and the opioid crisis are other priorities for him.

There were no write-in votes.

The mayor said she looks forward to working with the new team.

“Each of our councilmembers brings different strengths and assets to the table, so this was a tough election, with four incumbents running to fill just three seats,” Grafstein said in an email. “I will miss the heartfelt contemplation and thoughtful perspective always provided by Toya Aaron, and I hope that she continues to stay active in the city. I am looking forward to getting to know Bill Mier, and working with everyone as we develop policies for the betterment of Madison Heights and our community.”


Hazel Park City Council
In Hazel Park, four candidates ran for two four-year terms on the council.

According to unofficial results posted by Oakland County, with 100% of precincts reporting, Andy LeCureaux, the only incumbent, took first place with 942 votes. Joining him on the Hazel Park City Council is the second-place finisher, Andrea Washington, with 681 votes.

The runners-up were Al Casinelli, with 557 votes, and Tracy Pease, with 387 votes.

LeCureaux is the self-employed owner of Andrew’s Appliance Installation. He previously said his top goal, if re-elected, is to get the Landmark Church property redeveloped into quality new housing options. He also wants to continue working to attract business, repave roads, upgrade the city’s parks and housing stock, and to continue volunteering, helping families through his work on the Youth Assistance committee, cleaning parks during the spring, and planting trees in the fall. LeCureaux is also a steadfast supporter of the Hazel Park Arts Fair.

“It’s really humbling that I got a lot of support. Numbers show that I’ve done the hard work over the years. I think I have a track record people recognize. There’s campaigning, and then there’s stuff you do all year-long,” LeCureaux said. “I’m looking forward to getting the Landmark Church site redeveloped since it’s such a large piece of property. That’s one of the biggest things coming up. There’s also the road diet on John R, and supporting the businesses there. We will also be continuing to work on the side streets, and develop our housing stock. The redevelopment at Landmark could offer more options for housing in Hazel Park.”

Washington is a newcomer who works as a title coordinator at a major mortgage company. She studied anthropology at Michigan State University and is now enrolled for a bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership. She has also served on Hazel Park’s Planning Commission and Environmental Sustainability Committee. She campaigned on privately meeting with residents to make sure their concerns are heard, finding ways to make the city more environmentally friendly, and fostering community growth and improvement in accordance with the city’s master plan.

“It’s been a very busy day; I did a lot of things by myself. It was very grassroots for the whole election with basically me fundraising for myself, and my friends supporting me. I’m very happy because I’ve been working in the city since 2021, interviewing for the vacant seats and such, so it’s been a journey, and I’m happy to have been the person voted in tonight,” Washington said. “For the future it’s going to be a learning process, but I’m excited to start implementing things like clearer communications for the water bill and other happenings in the city for more community engagement. People have talked to me saying they wished they knew more since they’re not online or they’re not on social media where many things are announced. You want to make sure everyone is involved.”

Casinelli is employed as a hydraulic testing lead. He was educated at Norfolk State University and campaigned as an independent candidate for council focused on the core values of diversity, equality and inclusivity. He said he values everyone’s input, and wants to bring a more collaborative and innovative approach to the city.

“Hazel Park: Thank you so much for this amazing opportunity,” Casinelli said via email. “I’m grateful for the support I received, the people I met, and all I learned along the way. I’m excited for a more diverse Hazel Park City Council, and I look forward to staying involved in Hazel Park’s growth. I wish Andrea the best of luck on her new journey.”

Pease previously described her occupation as “organizer/field director,” and said her top goal is inclusion and transparency. She said she wants to tackle a range of issues, such as helping the community learn how to assist those suffering from mental health conditions, and how to be mindful when engaging with the concerns of minority communities.

There were no write-in votes.