Board Members

Board of Education Members:

Dechovitz-9-17-15

Louise Dechovitz (Vice President)

I have been a resident of Wilmette since 2010. I grew up in the area and am a graduate of New Trier. I then attended Lawrence University and have a BA in Slavic Linguistics and Literature. Following graduation, I spent the next 9 years living and working abroad, in Russia, France and England. I pursued a career in Expatriate Tax and worked for Deloitte Tax LLP in Paris, London and Chicago. I have two children in the Avoca School District. I have volunteered in many capacities in District 37 including PTC Director of Volunteers, PTC committee chairperson for spirit wear, member of numerous PTC committees and co-founder of the Avoca Different Learners group which serves as a forum for parents of children with special needs and other learning differences to connect with each other. I strongly believe that you cannot educate a child’s mind without also educating the heart. 

Term: 2019-2023
E-mail: dechovitzl@avoca37.org

Image of Board Member Dr. Sumit DharDr. Sumit Dhar  (Member)

Along with my wife, Julia and two daughters (’06 and ’10), we have been residents in the school district since 2012. I am a scientist by training and an educator by profession. Currently, I am the Hugh Knowles Professor of Hearing Science at Northwestern University and the Chair of the Roxelyn and Richard Pepper Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. Over the years, I have had various fiscal and organizational responsibilities at the university as well. I hope to bring these experiences to serve the D37 School Board and the Avoca Community in general.

Term: 2019-2023
E-mail: dhars@avoca37.org

 

Garbis

Dan E. Garbis (Member)

My family and I have lived in the Avoca District for the past fourteen years. With four children in the school district ranging from second to ninth grade, I have experienced the entire span of District 37. I received my bachelors from DePaul in accounting and passed the CPA exam. I then proceeded to go to DePaul Law School and graduated with highest honors. After graduating law school, I have worked as an accountant for a then big-six accounting firm, before moving on to corporate restructuring law at a top international law firm. I am currently a co-owner of the Garbis Law Firm and specialize in civil and criminal litigation. I also volunteer in the community. I am an usher at my church, and often coach various church and park district sports teams.

Term: 2017-2021
E-mail: garbisd@avoca37.org

Gibori

Gil Gibori (Member)
Profile available upon request.
Term: 2017-2021
E-mail: giborig@avoca37.org






Board Member, Dr. Gretchen Witte GladerDr. Gretchen Witte Glader
(Member)

I have lived in the Avoca School District for 9 years. I have one son who is 30 who attended New Trier.. I am a psychotherapist and a retired school social worker. My Ph.D. is from Loyola University. I work with couples, adults, teens, families, and children and my clinical interests include children who have difficulty because of their "giftedness”.
In my career I have also been interested and active in education, I’ve taught at the pre-school level and at the university level, tutored for elementary and middle school gifted kids, and have worked as a social worker in schools at levels from pre-primary through high school.
I am thrilled to be on the school board because I feel it’s a responsibility of community members to be useful to that community in the best way they can, using the skill sets they have.

Term: 2019-2023
E-Mail: gladerg@avoca37.org

Taylor

Jamie Taylor (Member)

My husband, Rob, and I have lived in Winnetka with our three children for the past 11 years. I am currently a stay-at-home mom and dedicated volunteer. I have achieved meaningful relationships with administration, teachers and parents due to my nine years of volunteer service to District 37. I also serve as Vice President of the Woodley Road Garden Club and previously served on the Board of the Chicago Dancing Festival and as Treasurer of Northfield Community Nursery School.

I graduated with a degree in Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley (1992 – 1995) and then returned to graduate school to earn an MBA from the University of Chicago (2000 – 2002). I started my career at LaSalle Bank where I worked for its loan syndications group. I was responsible for structuring the bank’s largest loans and selling off segments to other financial institutions (1995 – 2001). Later I joined Pekin Singer Strauss Asset Management as an equity analyst and portfolio manager (2001 – 2007).

My priority is to sustain the District’s reputation for academic excellence while safeguarding its financial security. I will work with other Board members and district administration to carry out the Mission, Vision and Values identified within the 2016 Strategic Plan. I believe my educational background and finance skills provide me with the tools to address the District’s aging facilities and navigate expected budgetary shortfalls and financing issues.

Term: 2017-2021
E-Mail: taylorj@avoca37.org

RickRick Zelinsky (President)

My wife, Faith, and I are Northfield residents for the past eighteen years and are parents of two boys, whom both attended Avoca from Kindergarten through Eighth Grade. I am a technology professional by trade and, for the past three decades, have been fascinated by the unprecedented growth in availability, adoption and advancement of technology. I have been on the Avoca District 37 School Board for the past eight years, currently as the Board President and as Board Vice President from 2015-2017. I have had the pleasure to serve the Board as both a parent and, more recently, a general community member. My initial involvement with District 37 began in 2003 as a parent representative for the District Technology Committee. As a cross-functional team, we established the original long-term technology plan for the district, involving one of the most progressive initiatives (1:1 student-to-laptop) in district history. My three priorities for the board are: providing oversight and support of the recently created strategic plan, enhancing communication and “connectedness” with both parent and non-parent communities, and maintaining fiscal discipline including addressing the long-term plan for Avoca Center. It has been an honor to give back to the Avoca community through my Board work, and I look forward to continuing to share my passion for technology and focus on students while ensuring the best use of our taxpayers’ resources.

Term: 2017-2021
E-mail: zelinskr@avoca37.org