As I prepare to leave the D97 Board of Education, it is fair to state that I have vested interest in a legacy of positive leadership that promotes academic excellence, racial and economic diversity, and fiscal stability in the Oak Park public schools. I cannot overstate the need for good governance and positive leadership as the district undergoes key transitions. Carolyn Newberry Schwartz, Kathy Tortorice and Peter Barber clearly demonstrate the essential qualities for such leadership.
Carolyn's record as a knowledgeable, hard working and excellent advocate for children is exemplary. She is the consummate leader who has earned my respect and admiration. Currently the vice president of the board, she co-chairs the Legislative Advocacy Committee, served on the Finance Task Force, was appointed by Governor Blagojevich to serve on the Illinois Early Learning Council and helped form the Collaboration for Early Childhood Care and Education.
Kathy Tortorice is a credible, bright, diligent, forthright and articulate professional who is currently engaged in our schools. Kathy is a member of the Critical Issues Process on the Instructional Delivery Study Group at GBMS and Co-Vice President for the Sixth Grade PTO. Her enthusiastic and hardworking nature will be an asset to the board.
Peter Barber's skills as an advertising and marketing professional who develops business strategies, manages projects, coordinates the efforts of clients and colleagues, is invaluable as the district embarks on strategic planning. As a consensus builder he will ensure that every voice is heard as the district sets long term objectives. Peter is a co-vice president of the Beye PTO.
Carolyn Newberry Schwartz, Kathy Tortorice and Peter Barber are leaders committed to providing accountability and promoting academic achievement for every child with realistic understanding of district finances. They are by far the best choices for District 97 Board.