Oakton seats new board members, elects officers
(April 26, 2017) The Oakton Community College Board of Trustees elected new board chairman William Stafford (Evanston), vice chair Joan W. DiLeonardi (Des Plaines) and secretary Benjamin Salzberg (Northbrook) and welcomed its newly-elected members—Martha Burns (Evanston), Paul Kotowski (Skokie) and new student trustee Brian Chan (Des Plaines)—at a special meeting Tuesday, April 25.
Stafford succeeds Skokie resident Ann Tennes, who is serving a six-year term.
Burns spent 12 years in service to the Evanston Township High School District 202 school board. As board president, she championed policies responsible for improving equity in student. Burns also served 16 years with the Community and Economic Development Association of Cook County (CEDA), playing a key role in implementing critical job training, employment and welfare-to-work programs.
“I want to thank the voters for electing me the board,” Burns said. “I am honored to be a part of the Oakton family and community, and I’m available to anyone in the district who wants to have a conversation with me. I look forward to working with President Smith and my colleagues on the board.”
Kotowski, a practicing attorney for 16 years, grew up in Skokie and attended classes at Oakton from 1992-1994 before earning an accounting degree from Loyola University and a law degree from DePaul University's School of Law.
“I’m looking forward to working with the board. My colleagues on the board are brilliant, and it will be a pleasure to work with them,” Kotowski said. “Returning to campus is one of the nicest things about it, and I’m looking forward to the infrastructure improvements on the horizon.”
Chan, in his second year at Oakton, is studying finance.
“It has been an excellent experience thus far. Everyone on the board has been welcoming, and I look forward to representing the student body in service to Oakton,” Chan said.
Burns and Kotowski will serve six-year terms, and Chan will serve a one year term. The trustees replace 30-year trustee Jody Wadhwa (Northbrook) and Patricia Harada (Wilmette), who did not run for re-election. Chan replaces outgoing student trustee Patryk Swietek (Glenview).
Oakton Vice President for Administrative Affairs Edwin Chandrasekar was appointed treasurer to serve at the pleasure of the board.
The board also announced dates for its regular meetings for the 2018 calendar year as follows: January 16, February 20, March 20, April 17, May 22, June 26, August 21, September 25, October 16, November 13 and December 11.