WJ editors, boy did you get it wrong! Fred Arkin has been the most effective member of the D200 school board in our lifetimes and our community needs to re-elect him to the board. Fred has delivered on the promises he made four years ago. He has been a driver of change (see all the new faces in the D200 administration). He has been an advocate for fiscal responsibility, supporting tens of millions of dollars of tax abatements and never voting for a full property tax levy. He has not shied away from the difficult debate around facility issues, and when he saw how divided the community was, he supported a process that has resulted in community consensus for the critical first project. 

We have known Fred since childhood. He is a man whose passion for his community has benefited thousands of our youth. Our son, who was a wrestler at OPRF, had Fred as a coach and mentor throughout his high school years. This is a man who understands the workings and people of the school because he is always there! After high school, Fred has remained a close friend to my son and a wonderful role model. 

Fred is a humble man without a hint of narcissism who imparts his core values of gratitude and humility to all he encounters. It is ridiculous that you would endorse two newcomers to the board who have no apparent nexus or familiarity with the district and each has an unaddressed apparent conflict of interest over an incumbent whom you endorsed four years ago and has fulfilled those promises to act in the best interests of our students, taxpayers, and faculty and staff. 

We urge all citizens in Oak Park and River Forest to vote for Fred Arkin for the D200 Board of Education.

Ginny Beacom

Oak Park

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