2023 nominee for the Stevenson District 125 School Board


Location: Lincolnshire

Age on election day: 47

Occupation: educator

Employer: Lake Forest College

Previous positions held: Currently a member of the D125 Board of Education

questions and answers

Q: Why are you running for this office, whether for re-election or for the first election? Is there a specific topic that motivates you?

A: I already had a 2023 run scheduled for the District 125 School Board. When I found out there was an opening, I applied and was sworn into the School Board in June 2022. I have a long history of involvement in education and public service which makes me a valuable contributor and collaborator. I would feel privileged to continue to serve all of Stevenson’s stakeholders to support the district mission of Success for Every Student.

Q: What is the role of the school board in setting and overseeing the curriculum?

A: The board oversees and sets policies; Our role is governance, not management. The curriculum is developed and implemented by the experts, our world-class educators. Our fee includes the approval of new course offerings, such as the new Virtual Reality elective in CSET (Computer Science, Engineering, and Technology), which students will take for the first time next year. We monitor the effectiveness of the curriculum based on study results.


Q: Are there any curriculum issues in the district that you feel need special attention from the board?

A: We have solid and diverse curriculum across all departments, and there are always opportunities for improvement and clarification. I would be happy to see more student participation in MINT, especially among our female students. We have tremendous electives and co-curricular offerings and are always striving to support educational innovation and research. In general, things are going really well, which puts Stevenson in the wonderful place of refinement rather than redevelopment. Some wonderful examples include this year’s Student Wellness Initiative and Stevenson’s commitment to social emotional learning, not just as a curriculum but as a way of life that touches every aspect of the student experience.

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Q: How do you see your role in confronting political or curriculum controversies: taking the lead even when they are unpopular, giving voters a voice – even those you disagree with, or giving in to government agencies?

A: There are well-defined processes that stakeholders can use to challenge policies or object to materials. When a potentially divisive issue comes before the board, I am committed to an effective and transparent process and work impartially. As a board member, I have a responsibility to all of our stakeholders. We must exemplify good governance and citizenship in all our interactions, with respectful discourse, listening, perspective-taking and dissent without being uncomfortable. I always remember that our children and their families are watching. Whether it’s sharing updates from student life or receiving recognition for their achievements, we see students and parents at every one of our meetings.

Q: Concerns about a resurgence of the pandemic are growing. If another massive infectious disease outbreak occurs, what have we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic that will guide your decision-making?

A: Throughout 2020 and 2021, we’ve heard the word unprecedented over and over again. Another infectious disease outbreak in this manner would not be unprecedented, so I would consider historical evidence along with recommendations from Stevenson’s governance and expert guidance at the local, state, and federal levels. We have learned that our teachers and students are flexible and have the ability and will to support the continuity of learning even under extraordinary circumstances.

Q: Describe your experience of working in a group environment to set guidelines. What is your style for reaching agreement and managing school district politics in such an environment? Explain how you believe this will be effective in eliciting effective action and decisions from your school board.

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A: I have served on several superintendent committees and PTO committees and executive councils in my past (NSSD112) and current (D103) districts and on the Stevenson Board of Education. I think it’s crucial to listen to different perspectives, ask questions to gather additional information, review all relevant quantitative and qualitative data, and use this work to focus priorities. As a board member, my North Star ensures that our decisions and policies best serve our students and support the optimal conditions for teaching and learning.

Q: What makes you the best candidate for the job?

A: I am uniquely suited to this job because I have worked as an educator for over 20 years in a variety of settings and communities. Whether I’m leading a college seminar with young adults or sitting on a yoga mat teaching students with disabilities how to self-regulate, I understand that educational cultures, communities, and environments need to rise up to meet and support each student so that they can can reach its full potential. Through my volunteer work serving public school districts in a variety of roles, I understand the complex interplay between education, finance and facilities, and work with the board and administration to assess the ever-changing variables in District 125. I recognize the need to develop and maintain a strong relationship with fellow board members, administrators and the school community at large to ensure the healthy functioning and continued success of the district.

Q: What is a good idea you have to improve your district that no one is talking about yet?

A: My best idea is to continue this work with humility, remembering that I am here to serve the community. I will always seek greater communication, understanding and respect for all involved. I am blessed to currently serve on Stevenson’s Board of Education, so I know there is an incredible array of talent here. Our students work in classrooms, clubs and organizations to bring great ideas to life, and when they don’t see a way, they can make their own by suggesting a new club or organization to the Student Activities Office. Our teachers work in thoughtful, collaborative and creative professional learning communities where they constantly exchange and develop good ideas. As a board member, my primary concern is to ensure Stevenson’s continued success.

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