Wilmette, News

Stuart Wolf’s departure leaves opening on Wilmette Library Board

The Wilmette Library Board of Trustees is seeking a new member following the resignation of Stuart Wolf, who was fulfilling the remainder of a seat that expires in 2023.

Wolf told the board on July 19 that he is moving out of the district and can no longer serve as trustee. He initially served two terms from 2012-2020. He was not re-elected the following year; however, was renamed to the board upon the resignation of Jan Barshis in August 2021.

The board approved Wolf’s resignation at its July meeting and it went into effect July 31.

“It has been a great pleasure and thrill that you guys all voted to have me rejoin the board when I did,” Wolf said July 19. “I can’t tell you how sad it makes me to step down right now. … The passion and enthusiasm and dedication you all as board members showed to me is so encouraging to me for the future of the board and the library and what we can do on behalf of the community.”

Library officials are accepting applications to replace Wolf through 6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 15. More information is available through a post on the library’s website. Find an application form HERE. The open term expires in April 2023.

President Lisa McDonald said the board will still take advantage of Wolf living nearby in Evanston.

“I have always appreciated your energy and marketing savvy,” she said. “… I look forward to picking your brain.”

Trustee Joan Fishman thanked Wolf for his contributions to complicated discussions.

“Your clarity and your vision always comes through,” she said. “I always think you are the voice of reason and so appreciate your laser focused point of view.”

On a final note, Wolf credited his peers for their hard work and dedication, while encouraging them to keep perspective and poise, especially as libraries across the country face intimidation to remove books that address sensitive issues and cancel inclusive events. Recent threats drew a public statement from the American Library Association in June.

“It has become harder and harder for a library board and library to function in the world we’re in today,” he said. “… I think it’s very important first and foremost to hear everybody’s voice, but I think it’s also important to measure how loud a vocal minority might be as a way to skew what is representative of the majority of our community.

“As I step down, I look forward to the library board staying strong and listening … and measuring the vocal quality of what you are hearing.”

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joe coughlin
Joe Coughlin

Joe Coughlin is a co-founder and the editor in chief of The Record. He leads investigative reporting and reports on anything else needed. Joe has been recognized for his investigative reporting and sports reporting, feature writing and photojournalism. Follow Joe on Twitter @joec2319

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