SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today commended the Illinois State Board of Education for appointing Dr. Randy Dunn as Interim Superintendent of Education. Dunn, of Chester, was the Governor’s proposed candidate for the interim position and is currently on leave from his position as Chairman of the Education Administration and Higher Education Department at Southern Illinois University - Carbondale. The State Board took the action at their first board meeting since the Governor appointed seven new members last week. Dunn will serve in an interim capacity and Gov. Blagojevich expects to propose a candidate to serve as the permanent Superintendent following a nationwide search.
“This is a delicate and exciting time of transition at the Illinois State Board of Education. I believe Randy Dunn has the right background and experience in both classroom instruction and education administration to manage the agency during this critical time. Working with the State Board, Randy can help us achieve our goals of improving the way we educate Illinois children and working with local schools and teachers, instead of against them. I look forward to working with him and the nine members of the State Board of Education,” said Gov. Blagojevich.
Dunn rose through the education ranks during his twenty-year career – starting out as a fourth grade teacher in Gibson City after graduating from Illinois State University. He spent three years in the classroom before he transitioned to school administration, serving as principal in two central Illinois schools and later as superintendent in the Agrenta-Oreana Community and Chester Community School districts. In 1994, Dunn began at the University of Memphis as an Assistant Professor and one year later, he joined the faculty as SIU-Carbondale.
Governor Blagojevich thanked Dunn for accepting ISBE’s appointment, which will be a challenging and exciting opportunity to help move Illinois education forward. Last week, Governor Blagojevich named seven new members to join two existing members on the Illinois State Board of Education. He asked the State Board, and now the new interim Superintendent, to focus on three main areas: to immediately work to reduce the backlog in teacher certification, to reduce the number of rules and regulations burdening local school districts and to develop innovative, realistic and affordable strategies to improve Illinois education.