We have an active race for District 202 school board.  There are only three spots. But there are four good candidates.

Originally I planned to endorse only one candidate, Scott Rochelle.  I am a co-chair of Scott’s campaign committee and am confident that he will be an exceptional school board member.  Scott has one goal, improving education for all of our students.  To that mission he brings strong education expertise.  As a lawyer he practices school law and he is a University of Illinois trained education policymaker.

He also brings new energy, a passion to serve, and a deep commitment to the Evanston community he and grew up in together.  I ask that you vote for Scott Rochelle.

Because I thought so highly of the other three candidates, I originally planned to make no more endorsements. But as the campaign has become more charged, I realized the other three candidates for District 202 school board deserved my support (and modest contribution) as well.

I know each of them–Mark, Jane and Jonathan–and to a person they are running because they want the best for every child in Evanston.

Mark Metz is seeking reelection after being appointed to the board. As a volunteer high school baseball coach and a financial manager he brings a great balance of needed business savvy and youth involvement. He cares deeply for our children and does not shy away from tough decisions.  He deserves your support.

Jane Colleton is an educator, a twenty year board member and a lifetime advocate for excellence for all children.   Jane believes that all children can succeed and has always set the highest academic and personal standards: whether you were a preschooler at Chiaravalle, a student at Dewey, or a teenager at ETHS.  There is a significant and diverse group of Evanstonians that have Jane to thank for starting and guiding them down a path towards academic achievement and collegiate success.  She brings that passion and those expectations to the board and deserves your support.

Jonathan Baum is a public servant and attorney.  He is seeking election after previously serving on the District 65 board.  Serving with him on the Y.O.U. board I see first-hand his passion for youth and ability to advocate for our children.  As befits a civil rights attorney, he has a proven and deep commitment to helping all children achieve their potential.  He too deserves your support.

We are blessed to have such qualified and passionate candidates.

Nonetheless, the debate has heated up and evaluations are being made. As parents and taxpayers we all have the right to ask tough questions and expect much from our schools and for our children.  But, we also owe all four our deep thanks for stepping forward to serve.

When you go to the ballot box please vote for Scott Rochelle.  As you cast your other two votes, I hope that even if you cannot vote for all of the candidates that they will at least get your thanks.

Eamon Kelly, an associate in the Chicago law firm of Jenner & Block, was one of five candidates in the race for the 18th District state house seat last year.

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  1. Free Endorsement Space

    Eamon Kelly is Scott Rochelle's campaign committee cochair!

    Of course, if given the forum as he has obviously been provided on this website, he would certainly "endorse" Rochelle for the Dist. 202 school board.

    I'm betting the campaign chairs for all the other school district board candidates wish they were so well-connected to the people who run Evanstonnow.com.


    1. Viewpoint column

      Hi Billyjoe,

      Eamon's "connection" to Evanston Now is that he, without being asked, submitted by e-mail a well crafted opinion piece which I deemed to be publishable, in part because it struck a theme that I think may resonate with many voters this week — that the pool of candidates running for the ETHS board is quite well qualified.

      That's a theme that seemed refreshing in an era of high partisanship in politics.

      Campaign chairs for the other candidates, had they taken the same initiative, would have been given the same consideration. But none of the others did so.

      — Bill

  2. Spoken like a true politician

    As you continue your political career, you will be required to make choices, difficult choices.

    Trying to pander to all groups and parties may serve to further your interest and career, but it will come at the expense of the larger population. For example, look at the situation Illinois is in today.

    Why? One reason is that politicians are reluctant to make the difficult decisions that will serve the best

    interests of our state because they are trying to make EVERYONE happy. We live in times of limited resources, and those resources will continue to be constrained. Choices will have to be made.

    Hopefully, in the future you will do your homework, conduct thoughtful and independent analysis, and reach conclusions based on considered qualitative and quantitative information. Walking down the middle of the road serves no interest except your own.

    People in Evanston and Illinois deserve better.

    1. honesty is not pandering

      It may frustrate you and others that Mr. Kelly expressed his honest opinions regarding the candidates for District 202 school board.  I believe that Kelly's honesty is not pandering "to all groups and parties."  As I've learned more about Mr. Kelly, I've observed that he honestly expresses his feelings, whether it will get him more votes or not.  How refreshing!  These days many politicians jump to become partisan, act on assumptions without checking out facts, and otherwise display themselves in embarrassing ways (the former governor comes to mind as a prime example).  It's a rare thing to hear what Mr. Kelly had to say.  He continues to give the public the benefit of the doubt, that we will actually listen to what he has to say before leaping to make accusations about one thing or another.  The easy path is to promote only your particular candidate.  For Mr. Kelly to acknowledge that he respects the other candidates is impressive and probably lost on many readers.  He models civil discourse and respect for other people.  I congratulate Mr. Kelly for writing his e-mail and thank for Mr. Smith for printing it.

  3. If Eamon Kelly endorses them,

    If Eamon Kelly endorses them, I'll be sure not to vote for them.

  4. Eamon Kelly Endorsement

    I've been on the other side of Eamon Kelly's tough stands. Trust me- he makes them. 

    On this point, however, Eamon and I are in agreement. Evanston has a field of well qualified and dedicated public servants running for positions with great influence over our future.

    1. Ha! To Scott’s credit, he has

      Ha! To Scott's credit, he has run a clean, effective, and professional campaign. Wasn't expecting to see him come out so strong. Hope he's the first of many young Evanstonians who are committed to service around town.

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