Board president eyes Mokena SD 159 business manager position
BY GINGER BRASHINGER For The Herald-News July 18, 2012 8:04PM
Updated: July 25, 2012 8:05AM
MOKENA — The Mokena School District business manager who resigned last week may have done so out of a belief the school board didn’t trust him, a school official said.
Meanwhile, the school board president is interested in applying for the job, even if it means giving up his board post.
Board President John Troy, an attorney, said he has been working through Northern Illinois University for the past year on his certification as a chief school business official.
“I have the qualifications. I’d be interested,” Troy said.
Troy said he does not want to pass up an opportunity in a field that has become his “career choice,” but he said he is concerned about the appearance of “cronyism” if the board were to accept his resignation as a board member and hire him as business manager.
“I have a passion for this district, and I would put my heart and soul into this district (as business manager) as I have in the past,” Troy said. “If I can serve the district as a board president, or if I can serve the district as a business manager, I want to do what I can.”
The resignation of director of business operations Kirt Hendrick, accepted by the board last week, is effective July 31.
Superintendent Steve Stein said Hendrick, who was in the job for only one year, had not accepted a position elsewhere. The resignation was unexpected, and Stein said he indicated in an email to board members that Hendrick’s “perception” was that “he did not have the trust of the board.”
Hendrick was thoroughly questioned by the board in May about the bid process for custodial and maintenance supplies, and the board ultimately rejected the bid he had solicited.
Trustee Pat Markham in particular questioned Hendrick’s attempts to get competitive bids, and Hendrick defended his attempts as “a good faith effort.”
Markham said he did not believe the questioning led to Hendrick’s resignation.
Hendrick said Thursday in a news release that he was leaving for “personal and professional reasons.”
“He was a great asset for me as a new superintendent and for the district as a whole,” Stein said.
The board also hired Rebecca Rodey to fill one of several vacant music teacher positions.
Rodey, who taught music at Mokena Junior High School from 2008 to 2011, will return there for the coming school year.
Stein said Rodey was “the best candidate” due to her part in the development of the music curriculum and her experience in the program.