Endorsements: Pearson, Medal for Arlington Heights library board
The Arlington Heights Memorial Library is a five-star library and has been for seven years, one of the few libraries in the nation so designated for so long. The credit for that goes to many people, not the least of which is a community that cherishes it, and supports it.
The library recently completed a major renovation that it accomplished without asking for an increase in taxpayer contributions; instead it squirreled away money over years for just this eventuality. Now it has embarked on a study to determine why residents in the far north and far south areas of Arlington Heights are not using the library as much as those in the central part of town -- and what to do about it.
The present library board has done its job in a straightforward way and so endorsing incumbent Kerry Pearson for another six-year term is easy.
The second seat, however, offers an interesting challenge. No one filed to run for this seat, but once filing closed, three residents saw the vacancy and stepped up. Carole Medal, Stefan Tucker and Patricia Turner all filed as write-in candidates.
Medal's name should be familiar. She is a professional librarian who was the executive director of the Rolling Meadows Library and for the past 10 and a half years has run the much larger Gail Borden Library based in Elgin.
Tucker, meanwhile, has a significant genealogical tie to the library -- his mother, Jan, was a well-respected library board member for 34 years, retiring in 2009.
Turner is a CPA, something the board doesn't currently have and perhaps could use.
Voters have an unusual choice between a library professional and a citizen board member.
Medal, the 2013 Illinois Librarian of the Year, has outstanding credentials and qualifications and a true passion for libraries and library science. Tucker practically grew up at the Arlington Heights library; he is very familiar with its past and present and is well up on the issues that face it today. We like them both -- really, all three -- very much.
The questions about Medal surface along the lines of what happens when Medal and AHML Executive Director Jason Kuhl disagree? Will other board members constantly defer to Medal's opinion? On the other hand, let's not look for trouble. This is a top-quality library and both the board and administration know what they are doing. Having Medal on the board is a wonderful opportunity for the AHML, one not to be cast aside. She is endorsed