A self-described "business and technology junkie" has been named to fill a vacancy on the District 125 school board, which governs Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire.
Sunit Jain, 46, a business technology executive from Long Grove, was unanimously approved Monday from among eight candidates to fill the spot made available when Lori Lyman resigned last month. The term expires in April 2013.
The co-founder of Ubiquity IQ, a software company focusing on business analytics, Jain has two children at Stevenson and one in sixth grade.
"The students are our customers at the end of the day," he said.
Jain worked for two decades in the information technology industry, including stints at AT&T/Lucent Technologies (now Alcatel), Sun Microsystems (now Oracle) and Forsythe Solutions.
"I'm excited about the opportunity of bringing a different perspective to the community and the board," he said.
He has a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Rutgers University, a Master of Science degree in electrical engineering from Cornell University and a Master of Business Administration degree in international business, marketing and decision sciences from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Board president Bruce Lubin said Jain will bring a "refreshing perspective" to the board. He cited Jain's "passion for education, his concern about the future of the school district and most importantly the student body," as attributes.
"I'm always looking for the right balance -- where can technology help in improving the student experience, where does it make sense," Jain said. "There's a lot of challenges and pros and cons in how you implement those programs."
Stevenson, perennially a top ranked school, is moving away from traditional classrooms for more flexible seating arrangements. Other changes include the increasing use of digital tablets. This year, about 750 students will receive iPads to use in class and at home.
"We're entering a new era as far as how teaching and learning takes places at Stevenson and (Jain's) background in technology and business, combined with his obvious enthusiasm for education will be very beneficial to us going forward," said Jim Conrey, the district's spokesman.
Jain also co-founded the Supporting Excellence in Education Foundation, which recognizes service-oriented high school students who give back to the community. The foundation has distributed $185,000 to 34 students since it was created in 1998.