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updated: 1/4/2011 6:05 PM

District 46 board member who quit post in hunt for paid job

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  • Michael Linder

    Michael Linder


Former Grayslake Elementary District 46 board member Michael Linder -- who resigned his elected position in November -- might return as a paid engineering consultant.

Linder, 68, earlier this week had expected a school board vote to occur Wednesday on an administration recommendation that he be hired for the job.

However, the vote has been postponed, District 46 Superintendent Ellen Correll said, because she plans to wrap up interviews for the position that day.

Retired from a career of managing large corporate operations, Linder said he would bring his industrial engineering skills to the job. If hired, he would report to a district office to serve as the facilities engineer consultant.

"They (school officials) repeatedly requested me to do this over a period of time," said Linder, a Texas Tech University graduate.

Linder, elected to the District 46 board in 2007, submitted his resignation letter Nov. 10 in the middle of a meeting. He then departed the session at Grayslake Middle School, saying he didn't want to be a lame duck until his resignation officially started.

"It's kind of mixed emotions, but I wanted to tell you that due to changes in my schedule, I must tender my resignation to the school board effective Nov. 30, 2010," he said at the meeting. "I'm very proud of the board's accomplishments in the past four years."

A similar situation led to controversy at Big Hollow Elementary District 38 in unincorporated Ingleside in January 2009, when board member Todd Wright quit in an effort to become technology director there.

Big Hollow's elected officials delayed a vote on Wright because of community opposition and accepted more applications, but hired him two months later. The board members said Wright remained the best fit for the job.

District 46 posted the facilities engineer consultant position on its website for applicants Oct. 29. The job will involve overseeing continuing projects districtwide and the 20-year facilities plan, along with reviewing and monitoring a budget.

Linder most recently was involved in plans to install air conditioning at Avon Center School in Round Lake Beach. Should he gain board approval, Linder said, he would serve the district for "multiple years" if both sides are satisfied.

"I think if anybody has seen what I have done and what I have been doing, it won't be a bad deal for the school," said Linder, who was District 46's board president from 2007 to 2009.

In brief discussion about the engineering consultant job at a Dec. 8 board meeting, Correll said "a lot" of applications were received but only one candidate was deemed qualified.

Correll said at the time she would repost the job opening on the website to ensure a good pool of candidates. She said the plan was to hire someone this month.

District 46 board President Mary Garcia said she and her colleagues have not been involved in the hiring process. She said Correll has a list of criteria for the position and that the board's decision will be strictly on the superintendent's recommendation.