District 34 News

Board hires creative collaborator to serve as communications director

The Board of Education recently approved the hiring of Jenn Nimke as the director of communications. In her role, she will be responsible for providing leadership in support of the District’s strategic plan through increasing public awareness of issues, trends and resources as well as raise public and employee awareness of events, programs, services and goals. She will also advise and recommend appropriate communications strategies to the Superintendent and other administrators.

Nimke most recently served as the assistant director of communications at The Nueva School, a prek-12 independent school located in California. Jenn started at Nueva after spending more than two years as the public relations assistant for Glenbrook High School District 225. Prior to her work in school communications, Jenn was a reporter with the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun Times.

Jenn earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Columbia College Chicago, where she also served as an editor on the student newspaper, a mentor for underprivileged youth and a writing volunteer for residents in public housing.

There were 87 applicants for the position, and six of the most qualified candidates were brought forward to interview separately with a group of staff, parents, principals and administrators. The interview team described Nimke as creative, having a strong awareness of the district and district needs, approachable, a good collaborator and cited her experience with social media work and public relations issues. Following those interviews, four finalists were brought forward to interview with the superintendent.

Board hires thoughtful leader to serve as Attea principal

The Board of Education recently approved the hiring of Mark Richter as the principal of Attea Middle School. In his role, he will be responsible for providing instructional leadership for the school resulting in student achievement, help implement District curriculum and board policies, maintain effective communication with the school community and promote programs and activities that enhance the health, welfare and safety of the students.

Richter most recently was a principal at Lake Zurich Middle School North in Lake Zurich District 95, a district he has been in since 2003. He started there as a teacher and also served as assistant principal for three years before taking over as principal. Prior to his work in Lake Zurich, he served as a teacher and learning team leader for five years at Waukegan High School in Community Unit School District 60.

Richter earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in speech communication from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and is working toward his doctorate from DePaul University in educational leadership.

There were 48 applicants for the position, and three of the most qualified candidates were brought forward to interview separately with a parent/teacher group and an administrator group. The interview teams described Richter as student centered, focused on individual growth, thoughtful and being well rounded with experience in a variety of roles. Following those interviews, three finalists were brought forward to interview with the superintendent.

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