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updated: 5/14/2013 10:53 AM

D70 Swears In New Board Members

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  • District 70 Board President Maryann Ovassapian, far left, swears in a new board, including, from left to right, incumbents Julie Damenti and Tom Vickers, along with new comers Luke Stowe and Wendy Schilling.

      District 70 Board President Maryann Ovassapian, far left, swears in a new board, including, from left to right, incumbents Julie Damenti and Tom Vickers, along with new comers Luke Stowe and Wendy Schilling.
    District 70

Robin Smith Kollman

Political newcomers Wendy Schilling and Luke Stowe were sworn into office, along with incumbents Julie Damenti and Tom Vickers, during a special meeting for the Libertyville School District 70.

The special meeting was held on May 6 in the boardroom at the Educational Resource Center, 1381 W. Lake St., Libertyville.

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Three of the four board members were on the ballot in April, with Stowe running as an official write-in candidate to complete the board.

All three of Schilling's boys have attended District 70 schools with the youngest graduating from Highland Middle School in June. Her timing on joining the board when her children have graduated from the school system is purposeful because "I wanted to have no specific interest or child in mind when deciding issues on the board. It is also important to engage the sector of the community that does not have a child in the school district but is only providing their tax dollars to the district.

"I look forward to maintaining the rich tradition of being a school district that provides the best education in a fiscally responsible manner."

Well known in the school community, Schilling has served as a member of the Parent Curriculum Advisory Committee, vice president of the Family Association District board, president of the Highland Family Association, and vice president and secretary of the Rockland Family Association. She has been an assistant scoutmaster and den leader, and is a respected Libertyville Little League coach from tee-ball to varsity level.

A Wisconsin native, Schilling is employed with the Law Office of the Cook County Public Defender as the Chief of the Multiple Defendant Division supervising a staff of 27 attorneys, support staff, investigators and mitigation specialist. She received her law degree from DePaul University. She and her husband, Patrick, have lived in Libertyville for 12 years.

"The District does an exceptional job but we can always strive to do better," she said.

Stowe and his wife, Christy, have lived in Libertyville nine years and have two children, with the oldest school-age child attending St. Joseph Catholic School in Libertyville.

"I believe a strong District 70 equals a strong Libertyville," Stowe said. "I look forward to listening and working with parents, staff, and all community stakeholders to keep District 70 among the best schools systems in the state."

Stowe said he wants to "keep District 70 on the leading edge of integrating technology into the classrooms, continuing a robust level of transparency to the community, and ensuring the right balance of highest educational performance while remaining fiscally responsible to the taxpayers."

Stowe, an Illinois native, currently is the Web Communications Coordinator for the City of Evanston. Previously, he has worked for Lake and Champaign Counties in various technology related roles. He also is also active in organizations such as Code for America (CfA), the National Association of Government Webmasters (NAGW), and other local non-profits.

Incumbent Tom Vickers will return to the board for his second four-year term and incumbent Julie Damenti is elected to her first four-year term, having been appointed to the seat in July 2011 to fill a two-year vacancy.


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