Mayor names two to library board

In the midst of the ongoing controversy over funding for the city's library, Evanston Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl has appointed two women to take the place of Library Board members whose terms have expired.
The two new appointees are Sharon L. Arceneaux and Mildred S. Harris. Their appointments are subject to approval by the City Council at its meeting Monday.
Mayor Tisdahl, in an interview yesterday before the names of the appointees were released, said she was trying to follow recommendations of the League of Women Voters and seek out the broadest base of people to provide more diversity on boards and commissions.
She said the new appointees would help the library board to reach out to all of the community and said she had nominated "absolutely wonderful people who both use the libraries and both take their children and grandchildren and nieces there."
The mayor didn't return a phone call from Evanston Now today asking for more specific details about the nominees and we were told by her secretary that we'd have to file a Freedom of Information Act request to get the information.
So we've done that and we'll let you know what the city's response is to the request.
But two aldermen said this morning that they were not yet familiar with the background of the candidates.
We've learned that Arceneaux is the registrar at Evanston Township High School, but at this point we don't have any biographical information about Harris.

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Comments

Freedom of Information Act request?

What? The mayor's secretary said you'd have to file a Freedom of Information Act request to learn anything about the backgrounds of these new appointees? That's ridiculous! We're talking about the library here, not the CIA.
A properly run office would have issued a simple press release introducing these two appointees. Mayor Tisdahl should have known that there would be curiosity about her appointees, considering what a lightning rod for controversy this board has become.
Let's hope that the secretary made a mistake and that the information will be forthcoming.

Appointments

Two excellent choices for the Library Board.  Both women bring long and strong histories of commitment to the Evanston community.   THe council would be wise to approve their appointments .

Tell us more about the nominees

 " Both women bring long and strong histories of commitment to the Evanston community."  

Sharon Arceneaux is listed on the ETHS website as the Registrar.  O.K., but what are her positions on the wasteful branch libraries and imposing new taxes?
 I can't find anything about Mildred S. Harris. 
Please tell us more about these nominees.

Qualifications?

What exatly makes them "Excellent choices" for the board?  Do either have financial backgrounds?  Do either of them have Library Science degrees?  Legal? Personnel?
The mayor says they're qualified, so as good little lemmings we follow...  right over the cliff.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of Evanston residents that have long histories of volunteerism and service to the community. Does that alone make any of them qualified and an "excellent choice" to serve on the board?
Specifics, please.  What EXACTLY makes these two women qualified?
 

Library Board remains incredibly homogenous

 Bill,
If you ever get the Mayor on the phone ask her to reconcile her claim to want more diversity on the library board with the fact that it has recently been one of the most un-representative boards in terms of gender.
Her nominations are continuing that trend and in no way helping to create gender parity on the board

Clearly the best choices.

What more do you need to know about these two? Didn’t anyone read what the Mayor said? She stated the two are "absolutely wonderful people who both use the libraries and both take their children and grandchildren and nieces there." Isn’t that enough?
Ms. Mayor. I too am a wonderful person and I went to the city beaches approximately 10 times this year. I have a deep bronze tan to prove it. I brought my son on several of those trips as well. Can I get appointed to the Parks/Recreation Board?