Klimkowicz becomes new District 211 board president
Anna Klimkowicz, the longest-serving board member of Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211, emerged as board president Thursday after a contentious internal vote that followed her reelection in one of the most hotly contested races in the Northwest suburbs on April 6.
Klimkowicz has served on the board of education for 24 years, but she has never been board president. Two-year board member Mark Cramer nominated and voted for himself, while six-year board member Pete Dombrowski nominated and voted for newly elected Tim McGowan, who had been seated only moments before.
McGowan joined the majority in voting for Klimkowicz.
Cramer complained that because he nominated himself ahead of any other nominees, a vote should have been taken on that before any other names were put forward, citing Robert's Rules of Order.
But the vote was taken in what Klimkowicz was the board's usual way, with all the members voicing their choices after all three nominations had been made.
Board member Steven Rosenblum, who was soon after voted vice president, said all nominations should be heard at once or the first nominee would be automatically chosen.
Cramer nominated Dombrowski for vice president, but Dombrowski voted only "present" on the election of vice president and secretary.
Two-year board member Kim Cavill was elected secretary over Cramer, who had again nominated himself.
Cramer then cast the sole vote against the newly reconfigured board's retaining the previous board's policies.
"We don't follow our own policies sometimes, so I'm going to vote no," he said.
Newly elected Curtis Bradley received the most votes -- 9,046 -- among the crowded field of eight candidates seeking three available seats on the board on Election Day.
Klimkowicz came in second with 8,915 votes, and McGowan placed third with 8,220 votes. All three winners had run together on a slate endorsed by the District 211 teachers union.
The next four highest vote-getters had been supported by Cramer and were largely focused on getting remote learners back in the classroom as well as greater fiscal discipline.
Jessica Hinkle received 7,767 votes, Kristen Steel 5,733 votes, Robi Vollkommer 5,101 votes and Denise Wilson 3,992.
Roxanne Wittkamp, the only candidate not running in cooperation with any other, brought up the rear with 2,061 votes.
Stepping down from the board at the end of their terms Thursday were former board President Robert LeFevre Jr. and former board Secretary Ed Yung.
The April 6 vote totals were certified by the Cook County clerk's office on Tuesday.