With the resignation last week of its longest-serving member, no one on the Brookfield-LaGrange Park Elementary School District 95 Board of Education will have more than three-and-a-half years of experience – just as the district is set to launch a major referendum campaign.
On Aug. 11 the board announced that Lynn Waterloo, who in April 2015 was elected to her fourth term in office, had moved out of the district and that her resignation was effective immediately.
Michelle Maggos, who was elected to her first term in 2013 and took over as school board president in May, said she hoped the board would be able to name a replacement for Waterloo in September. By law, the school board has 45 days to fill the vacancy.
“Depending on the candidates we get, we’re interested in filling the vacancy in a timely manner,” Maggos said.
The school board is accepting letters of application through Aug. 23. Candidates interested in being considered are being asked to mail letters of interest to the District 95 central office. Letters may be addressed to the Board of Education at 3724 Prairie Ave., Brookfield, Illinois, 60513.
Questions can be directed to Superintendent Mark Kuzniewski at 708-588-8701 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s the second time in six months that the District 95 school board has lost an experienced board member. John LaBarbera, who had served on the school board for 14 years, announced his resignation in March. He also moved out of the district.
The school board chose Brian Pencak, an architect from Brookfield, from a pool of three candidates to replace LaBarbera in May.
Waterloo’s resignation leaves four people elected in 2013 – Maggos, Barbara Garvey, Rebecca Zoltoski and Brian Conroy – as the most senior members of the school board. All four of those seats will be up for election again in 2017.
In addition, the two unexpired two-year terms of LaBarbera and Waterloo will also be up for election, meaning six of the seven school board seats will be on the spring 2017 ballot.
Maggos was elevated to board president in May, a move that came with Waterloo’s blessing; Waterloo made the motion for the change. In a phone interview last week, Waterloo revealed that she already knew she might be leaving the board at the time.
“I already had been thinking I might be getting ready to step down,” said Waterloo. “I was not going to continue knowing I was coming to this decision.”
Since that time, according to Maggos, Waterloo has helped her get accustomed to leading the board.
“Since I took over as president she’s been a mentor,” Maggos said. “It’s all new to me.
And just over the horizon is the prospect of a major referendum campaign to fund the construction of a new building on the campus of S.E. Gross Middle School in Brookfield.
That was a process Waterloo said she had hoped to see through when she was elected in 2015. Now she’s going to have to watch it unfold from the outside.
“It is bittersweet,” said Waterloo, who will continue to work as the business manager at St. Louise de Marillac Parish in LaGrange Park. “I’ve met some wonderful people, including some who have become friends of mine.”