College of DuPage Board of Trustees
Longtime politician Bev Fawell decided not to seek a second 6- year-term on the College of DuPage Board of Trustees this spring, opening up one board seat, though incumbent Diane Landry will try to retain her elected role.
Joining Landry in the April election for the two available 6- year terms are a wealth of newcomers: Teresa M. Belmonte, David Carlin, Allison O'Donnell, Kim Savage, Jann V. Thompson and Joseph C. Wozniak.
The district serves DuPage County, as well as parts of Cook and Will counties. The Daily Herald posed questions to the candidates. These are their edited responses.
Q. Why are you running for this office, whether for re-election or election the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you, and if so, what? What will be your main priority?
Belmonte. I want to contribute as a board member because I am grateful for the education I received that allowed me to pursue a second career as a registered nurse. I believe that COD plays a vital role in educating and enriching the community, and I am continually impressed with its ability to adapt to the changing academic and professional demands it faces. My experience in health care, which has now become one of the fastest growing and changing career fields, will be an asset when working to meet new challenges. As a result, I will be a strong advocate for the college's continued pursuit of academic excellence and commitment to future development.
Carlin. Since childhood I've been actively engaged in community and public service. I had the opportunity as a senior in high school to work half the school year as an intern in the governor's office under then Governor Jim Edgar. The experience taught me the importance of civic involvement and participation in the political process. If elected I'll be an advocate for the taxpayers, students, and the fine faculty members who have helped make the College of DuPage one of the best community colleges in the United States. I will approach every decision with an open mind, thoroughly evaluate all issues that come before the board, and always be accessible to the COD community.
Landry. I have had a continuing interest in the College of DuPage since my earlier service as a trustee from 1980 to 1991. I ran again in 2001 because of my concerns over the issues then in play at the college. At that time the Fisher Report raised several issues regarding the then acting board leadership.
Since becoming a trustee again in 2001, the college has hired a new president, changed from quarters to semesters, and entered into a major facilities construction program. There is much unfinished business on the Facilities Master Plan that I believe needs to be monitored and I wish to be a continuing part of that process.
O'Donnell. I attended College of DuPage for two years after high school then transferred to Elmhurst College, where I graduated with a degree in economics and business management.
I used the skills I obtained from my studies at College of DuPage and Elmhurst College to start my career in finance. While working at Van Kampen Funds I began attending DePaul University in the evenings to earn my Master's degree in finance and management information systems.
I would like to serve on the board to help other students begin their college and professional careers. One of the biggest issues that motivates me is to keep college affordable for students who cannot afford the traditional four-year college. This can help them to either enter the work force or complete a bachelor's degree at a four-year college.
Savage. I am running for trustee because I feel that I can utilize my educational and career experience to benefit the community. I have a master's degree in college student services administration and a minor in business administration.
In addition, I have 29 years of experience in five institutions of higher learning. …