I am glad to see the strong field of candidates for Oak Park Trustee and Village President. No matter who is elected, the new board will have a valuable diversity of skills, viewpoints, and lived experience. At the same time, though, it will have the least governing experience of any village board in recent memory.

As a former school board president, I learned how critical experience is. Vicki Scaman’s service as village clerk and chair of the Liquor Control Review Board provide her with the critical knowledge and skills necessary to lead, and I am delighted to endorse her as Oak Park’s next village president.

She is committed to racial equity, economic recovery, and environmental sustainability — all vital goals for our community.

But we often have different ideas about how to accomplish those goals, and the last few years on the board have been particularly contentious. As village clerk, Vicki was in the room — but above the fray — for these disagreements. Combining that perspective with her ability to listen deeply to multiple points of view and to forge healthy, respectful dialogue, she will begin with a strong foundation for building trust on the board.

Building the community’s trust in the board will also be essential. Her commitment to hearing and respecting all voices and to reinvigorating our citizen commissions will help us build bridges and find new and broadly supported solutions to many of our challenges.

Vicki will also bring her commitment to transparency to assure those efforts are successful. Drawing on her experience as village clerk, she will be open about how and why decisions are made and will work to assure user-friendly access to necessary information, further supporting highly engaged citizen involvement.

Working together over the next few years, we can make major strides toward racial equity, a robust local economy, a sustainable and livable community, and a government that is highly trusted. I believe Vicki Scaman is the best person to lead us to that future and I hope you will join me in voting for her on April 6 or in early voting.

Jeff Weissglass, Oak Park

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