March 29, 2011 7:48PM
Kathy Park, candidate Tinley Park Library. | Supplied photo
Office Sought: Tinley Park Public Library Trustee – 6 year term
Name: Kathy Parker
Address: 17239 Oriole Avenue, Tinley Park
Date of birth: May 10, 1963
Education: Rosary College, River Forest – Master of Library Science, DePaul University, Chicago – Bachelor of Arts, Communications, Roosevelt University, Chicago – Paralegal Certificate
Occupation, employer: Administrative Librarian, Glenwood-Lynwood Public Library District
Sources of income: Glenwood-Lynwood Public Library District
Please list any relatives, including in-laws, who are employed by a government agency at the federal, state or local levels. What are their job titles and with what agency are they employed? None
What other elected office have you sought? None
Have you ever been arrested or charged with a crime? If so, for what? What was the disposition? No
Do you have any criminal convictions on your record? If so, for what? What was your sentence? No
Political experience: None
In your view, what are the two most important issues facing your constituents? How would you address those issues?
I believe that the constituents throughout many communities are facing many of the same issues, job loss and access to technology. While being a fairly affluent community, Tinley Park is no different. Residents have lost employment and have had to make serious budget decisions in the last two years. If elected, I would bring forth to my fellow trustees and Library Administrator my belief that the library can help these residents by hosting job fairs, resume and employment counseling, conduct computer classes in resume building and employment searches, and provide more access to the available computers in the library.
Please explain something significant you would like to accomplish within the next two years if you are elected to the office to which you aspire.
I believe the Tinley Park Library is an excellent value for the residents of Tinley Park. They have an excellent selection of materials for checkout and employ a friendly and knowledgeable staff. The bookmobile visits many parks throughout the town on a weekly basis. If there was one thing I’d like to accomplish within the next two years, if I am elected to office, is to find a way for computer classes to be conducted at various partner sites within the community. The computer classes in the building are extremely popular and I believe they would be well attended off site as well.
Please explain how you believe the office you are seeking can help in creating local jobs.
As a library trustee there is no real way for a person in this office to create local jobs. However, the Tinley Park Library can and does employ many residents from within Tinley Park and the surrounding communities, and I believe will likely continue to do so.
Do you believe the current way Illinois pays for education is working? Why/why not?
No, I do not believe the current model for education funding is working. There is too much disparity in revenue between school districts, which equates to a large disparity in the quality of the teachers, educational resources used to teach students, after school activities and facilities. Schools in comfortable or affluent communities are much better funded, which allows for a higher caliber of teacher and resources. This affords a better education for the students. In communities that are at risk, the administrators of the schools are charged with the difficult task of giving a quality education without the proper funding to pay quality teachers, purchase the necessary educational resources to teach students, and often have no remaining funds for afterschool activities and/or maintenance of the facilities. The way education has been funded has not worked and we need to find a way to fix it so that all students in Illinois can receive a quality education, no matter where they live.
Would you make any changes to the budget of the governing unit to which you are seeking elected office? If so, what?
The Tinley Park Library has a healthy budget and I applaud the current Library Board and Library Administrator Rich Wolff for being fiscally responsible, even before the economic downturn. My goal as a library trustee is to bring the experience I have as Library Administrator to the table and continue the excellent model that has been created and find ways to utilize portions of that budget to take programming out into the community.
Are there any other issues you want to bring to the public’s attention? No