Voters choose 2 incumbents, 2 newcomers in District 204
Voters in Indian Prairie Unit District 204 have retained two incumbent school board members and elected two business-minded newcomers to fill four 4-year seats, according to unofficial final totals from Tuesday's election.
Incumbents Cathy Piehl and Michael Raczak earned another term, and newcomers Laurie Donahue and Susan Taylor-Demming will join them as the top four vote-getters in an eight-way race.
With all 99 precincts reporting in DuPage and Will counties, Piehl finished first with 5,230 votes, followed by Raczak with 5,130, Taylor-Demming with 5,059 and Donahue with 4,933.
Candidates Vasavi Chakka, J. Randy Sidio and Renata Sliva did not earn seats on the board. Neither did Marland Brazier, who dropped out of the race but still had his name appear on the ballot.
Raczak, 64, of Naperville, is a retired educator who said he has brought a lifelong learner's perspective to the board.
Piehl, a 58-year-old school social worker from Naperville, says the district needs experienced leaders such as herself to address challenges such as class sizes, achievement gaps and facilities needs.
Taylor-Demming, a 57-year-old public relations, marketing and workforce development consultant of Naperville, says she's willing to dig into tough issues to make sure all students are provided with the best opportunities.
Donahue, a 58-year-old computer engineer from Naperville who works as senior director of global quality for Nokia, said she will be a strong voice of financial understanding as the district confronts spending needs and uncertainties from the state.
Newly elected school board members will serve under President Lori Price and with fellow board members Justin Karubas and Mark Rising.
The group faces several important decisions to address overcrowded schools on the district's north side and underutilized elementaries on the south side, as well as space constraints at a building that houses a program for students with disabilities and structural issues at the alternative high school.