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Holly Jack Service Award

Award for board secretaries goes to O’Fallon’s Wilkey-Isselhardt

June Wilkey-Isselhardt, executive administrative assistant to the superintendent and board secretary of O’Fallon Community Consolidated School District 90, is the recipient of the seventh annual Holly Jack Award for school district secretaries.

She received the award at the Joint Annual Conference in Chicago. The Holly Jack Award recognizes the demanding work of school district and board secretaries. Nominees must demonstrate performance, initiative, innovation, staff development, self-improvement, passion, and dedication.

Wilkey-Isselhardt’s nomination, by O’Fallon superintendent Carrie Hruby and board president John Wagnon, established her possession of those qualities. She offered words of wisdom to her peers at the opening session of the Conference Secretaries’ Program.

“Be a sponge,” Wilkey-Isselhardt said. “Soak up everything you can. Be flexible. Do everything to the best of your ability, and you will have no regrets.”

Wilkey-Isselhardt was chosen for the award from 26 exceptional nominees. She has spent over 30 years in public education, serving three school districts. O’Fallon CCSD 90 is an elementary school district serving 3,600 students in seven schools. She was previously the secretary for two boards of education ― Dwight Common SD 232 and Dwight THSD 230 ― at the same time.

“People asked me how I kept two districts separate in my work,” Wilkey-Isselhardt said, speaking about serving two school boards at once. “We had the Spartans, which were Kelly green and white, and the Redbirds. I had green folders and green pens, and red folders and red pens, and that way I always knew what was what.”

Wagnon said that June has a passion for her work in District 90 and for public education in general. “She has an uncanny ability to know what needs to be done, and she does it before I even have a chance to ask,” Wagnon said.

Allen Scharf, former superintendent, former school board member, and now a financial consultant, added that June is “a wonderful example of the dedicated support staff in our school districts who keep school districts operating efficiently and effectively during transition periods of superintendent employment and school board elections.”

The award was created to honor the memory of Holly Jack, a long-time employee of the Illinois Association of School Boards, who served as an IASB field services administrative assistant and was instrumental in promoting and developing professional development programs for board secretaries. The purpose of the award is to both honor Holly’s contribution and memory and to recognize the extraordinary work and service provided by secretaries who serve and assist their local boards of education.

A selection committee comprised of individuals representing board members, superintendents, school business officials, district administrative assistants, and former IASB administrative assistants reviewed the nominating materials and made the selection.

The award was announced earlier in the fall but presented twice, on Nov. 20 before her peers, and on Nov. 22, during the third general session of the conference.


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