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D65 Profile: Richard Rykhus

District 65 school board candidate Richard Rykhus, of 2128 Brummel St., is director of strategic learning at the management consulting firm Grant Thornton LLP.

Family

Husband Carlos Briones, a professor at Oakton Community College, and son Ty'rith, 6, a kindergartener at Dawes Elementary School.

Education

Master's of arts in education from Northwestern University, bachelor's degrees in marketing and Spanish from Michigan State University.

In his own words

Opening statement at Feb. 10 candidate forum at Haven Middle School.

Good evening, I'm Richard Rykhus.

There are many things that are working well in District 65, and yet I believe that there are many things that could be working much better. That, combined with my passion for, and my commitment to public education is why I've decided to run for District 65 school board.

My parents are both educators — my dad, an administrator, my mother, a teacher of the year finalist in Michigan.

My husband is a tenured professor at Oakton Community College. And I completed my masters in education at Northwestern University.

The work experience I've had in schools and in the business world really prepare me for this role.
I currently serve as director of strategic learning with responsibilities related to strategic planning and measurement of program outcomes and managing , developing and managing complex budgets.

I've also managed financial budgets of multimiliion dollars and know I could walk into the board room and not have any challenges in getting my arms around that sort of data.

In addition to my profesiosonal experience, on a personal level I have advocated for some of our most vunerable students — students who have special needs, and students in high schools who are gay and lesbian and who have found themselves going to school in unsafe environment.s

In addition, my husband, Carlos, who is Mexican, and our son, Ty'rith, who is African-American, have enriched my multi-cultural perspective that i think is a very valuable asset to have on your school board.

My vision for our district includes things, but a few priorities:

  • Academic challenge and achievement for every child at every level.
  • Responsiveness to our families and community. As the last district survey indicated, only 33 percent of parents actually believe that the board understands and is responsive to the parents. And that has got to change.
  • Finally we need to ensure the recruitment and retention of top teachers. We need to be able to set measures that we can ensure  we're keeping those teachers and work with the administration to make sure that's complete.

Thank you.

Campaign website

RichardForDistrict65.com

Other resources

Profile on PTA Council website

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