Assistant Superintendent of Finance and Operations Cheryl Witham has accepted the position of Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations with New Trier Township High School District 203, effective July 1, 2013.
New Trier selected Witham to replace Associate Superintendent Donald Goers, who is retiring. Witham will serve as the Chief Financial/Operating Officer for District 203. In that role, she will manage all business and operational services; oversee insurance, transportation, food service, and purchasing programs; and represent District 203 as the chief negotiator in bargaining with employee associations.
Witham began her tenure with District 200 on July 1, 2002, the first certified public accountant hired for the role. At that time, the District had almost no reserves and had just passed a referendum. Witham was charged with improving the financial condition of the District, as well as the operational efficiencies and internal controls. Among other initiatives during her tenure, the District has created a more transparent, participatory budget process; undertaken decades of deferred maintenance; and engaged in long-term facilities planning to accommodate a significant increase in enrollment projected over the next decade. Witham also has overseen more than $6.2 million in cost-savings initiatives.
The District is now in very stable financial condition. Under Witham, the District earned its first Standard & Poor’s AAA bond rating, currently held by just 67 districts in the country. The District also has earned recognition for financial excellence from groups including the Association of School Business Officials International and the Illinois State Board of Education.
“I’ve really enjoyed my nearly 11 years with the District,” said Witham. “I’ve learned a great deal during that time, and I look forward to the new and different challenges at New Trier.”
Ms. Witham’s last day with District 200 will be June 30. The District will undertake a search for Ms. Witham’s replacement this spring and expects to have a new person in place by the start of the new fiscal year on July 1.