When Deanna Huxhold lobbied voters to support District 103’s tax referendum in 2003-04, she said that she was committed to making sure that extra tax dollars would go to the students of the district.
Now she’s in a position to make good on that promise after being appointed to the Dist. 103 board July 25, replacing Felicia Chandler, who is moving out of the area.
Huxhold, 34, who is currently president of the Costello School PTO in Lyons, will serve out Chandler’s term, which expires in 2007. She was co-chair of the KIDS committee that supported the tax referendum, which voters passed in March 2004, and was a member of the Dist. 103 School Design Team.
Huxhold was unanimously chosen by board members over two other candidates with strong ties to the district?”Marie Vachata and Sam Gillespie, both Lyons residents.
Vachata previously served eight years on the board, and from 2001-05 was the Lyons village president.
Gillespie, an administrator for the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services, also served on the Dist. 103 School Design Team.
“We had three excellent candidates, and the board really wrestled with this for several days,” said school board President Joanne Schaeffer. “I feel we made a good choice, but I feel that we also lost a couple of good candidates as well.”
Huxhold, who is married with three children, has two children at Costello School and said she’ll serve out her remaining one-year term as PTO president. She said she considered running for the school board in the most recent election in April, but decided against it when she became pregnant. Her baby is now nearly 6 months old, however, and Huxhold said she’s ready to jump in.
“I’m very fond of District 103 and I’d like to bridge the gap between District 103 and the community … help get the trust back. Working on the KIDS committee, I feel I owe it to the community to continue to watch the money and make sure it goes to the kids.”
As a board member, Huxhold said she’d also like to see test scores improve and continue to see programs added to the district curriculum.
“I want to see that our children are equal with every other district,” Huxhold said. “I think we’re on the right track.”
While Huxhold’s appointment fills one vacancy on the board, its membership is still up in the air pending a recount of write-in votes ordered by a Cook County judge. On April 5, Humberto Andrade appeared to have defeated fellow write-in candidate Robert Jonak for a vacant four-year term on the board. But Jonak filed a lawsuit contesting the election, citing a host of voting irregularities, from uncounted votes to insufficiently trained election judges.
On July 20 Cook County Circuit Court Judge Marsha Hayes ordered the recount, which will be held on Aug. 10 at 9 a.m. in the Cook County Clerk’s Office.