Aptakisic-Tripp Elementary District 102 Superintendent Theresa Dunkin will retire effective June 30, 2016, the district announced Wednesday.
Dunkin, who lives in Mundelein, started with the Buffalo Grove-based district in 2002 as principal of Aptakisic Junior High. She then worked as assistant superintendent of teaching and learning before becoming superintendent in 2009.
"Dunkin's accomplishments have spanned all areas including enhancing personalized learning and academic rigor for all student populations, putting the district on the cutting edge of technology and 21st Century learning, cultivating a culture of trust and collaboration, making students and staff safer, and involving the community in creating a five-year Learning Vision into Action Plan," the district said in a news release.
The District 102 school board will seek community feedback during the search for Dunkin's successor, according to the release.
The 2012-2013 certified staff and benefits report states Dunkin's base salary was $213,888.
Dunkin, 52, said it has always been her plan to retire after 35 years in education, a milestone she'll reach in 2016.
Even with that, it was a difficult decision to make, she said.
"I'm going to miss the district tremendously. This was the greatest opportunity of my life," Dunkin said.
Dunkin started out as a math and reading teacher in Lake Villa, then was an administrator in Gavin Elementary School District 37 in Ingleside, before coming to District 102.
She earned her undergraduate degree from Augustana College, her master's from Northeastern University and her doctorate from Northern Illinois University.
Dunkin, who grew up in Grayslake and has spent her entire career in the Northern suburbs, said she may do some traveling once she retires, but hasn't planned anything yet.
"My whole life has been so busy and planned out, so I'll just slow down the pace a bit. But, it's still a long way off," Dunkin said.
Dunkin said she is most proud of the way the staff, school board and community work together, as well as the advances the district has made in technology and implementing Common Core standards.