When T. Ferrier joined Cary Elementary District 26 as its finance director in 2009, describing the district as financially troubled would be an understatement.
The district was on the brink of state takeover because of its borrowing habits.
But Ferrier accepted a prestigious financial reporting award on behalf of the district last week, a high note that will end her tenure in Cary. She will leave the district in June for her new position as superintendent of finance in Crystal Lake Area High School District 155.
The excellence in financial reporting award, given by the Government Finance Officers Association, was received by only 18 Illinois school districts this year.
Many districts do not prepare comprehensive annual financial reports and are not eligible for the award, but Ferrier said she wanted to do the extra work in the name of transparency.
District 26 taxpayers approved a request for $15 million in Nov. 2010 that gave the district enough money for a fresh start. Ferrier said the community put a lot of faith in district officials with that decision.
"We have done so much to the educational opportunities in the district over the last four years in budget cuts," Ferrier said. "But we're bringing back programs, we're bringing back specials, we're lowering class sizes. And it's in our financial means."
The comprehensive annual financial report offers a 10-year financial history, which Ferrier said shows taxpayers the district has stuck to the promise it made when it accepted the $15 million -- that it wouldn't spend money on today's students at the expense of tomorrow's.
The report is available on the district's finance and operations Web page at cary26.org.
Jeffrey Schubert, an assistant purchasing manager for Carpentersville-based Community Unit District 300, will take over for Ferrier this summer.
He completed his chief financial officer internship in District 300 and is certified as a Chief School Business Official.
District 26 announced a one-year contract with Schubert that starts July 1. He will be paid $93,000.