Ms. Marsha J. Bayless is a life-long resident of Xenia. She is a 1973 graduate of Central State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education, and a 1978 graduate from the University of Dayton with a Master’s Degree in Supervision and Administration and Certification in Counseling. Ms. Bayless is active in many church and community organizations, and a member of United A.M.E. Church in Xenia, Greene County Library Foundation Board, Xenia Schools Foundation Board, Greene County Public Defenders Board, and more.
Ms. Bayless is very active in the Xenia Community. She was the first to pilot the elementary counselor program for the Xenia Community School District, she was a classroom teacher as well as an elementary principal, a hearing officer and recruiter for Xenia Schools, and chaired many councils/committees. Ms. Bayless was the first African-American female Mayor of Xenia and a Past President of Mayors and (City) Managers of the Dayton Region, 2013-2015. Ms. Bayless retired from the Xenia School District after 35 years of service. In December 2017, she completed her second term as Mayor of the City of Xenia beginning in January of 2010.
Ms. Bayless was the speaker of Xenia’s first Women in Business organization in 2011. She was inducted into the Xenia Community Schools Foundation’s Hall of Honor in 2012. Mayor Bayless was selected as Public Official of the Year by the National Association of Social Workers, Ohio Chapter, Region VII in 2013. She was inducted into Central State University’s Achievement Hall of Honor in March of 2015. She was awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters at Wilberforce University in 2015. She was the first elected official awarded the Barbara Zajbel Ambassador Award from the Xenia Area Chamber of Commerce in recognition of advocacy and promotion of Xenia locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally in 2015.