Meet the Board
Jung Kim: President
Jung Kim was elected to the District 97 Board of Education on April 2, 2019. Her term on the board will expire in 2023.
Kim began her career in education in 2000 when she was an English teacher and the co-chair of her department at Manley Career Academy High School in Chicago. From there, Kim went on to hold the positions of academic skills instructor, co-instructor/advisor and literacy coach at the K-12 level. She has also had an extensive and successful career teaching at the collegiate level, including in her current role as an associate professor of literacy at Lewis University, and is a published author and regular guest speaker and presenter on issues such as literacy, culture and race.
Kim earned her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and her master’s degree in reading, writing and literacy and Ph.D. in curriculum studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has been or is currently a member of several professional organizations, including the American Educational Research Association, the Association for Asian American Studies, the Illinois Reading Council, the International Reading Association, the Literacy Research Association, the National Council of Teachers of English and the Will County Reading Council. She has also been active in the District 97 community via the district’s Diversity Committee and Lincoln Elementary School’s Parent-Teacher Organization.
Kim is married, has two children at Lincoln and is an ultramarathoner.
Venus Hurd Johnson: Vice President
Venus Hurd Johnson was elected to the District 97 Board of Education on April 6, 2021. Her term on the board will expire in 2025.
Hurd Johnson is an account executive for Vitas Healthcare, with a focus on end-of-life care. She has more than 20 years of experience in pharmaceutical and healthcare sales and helped to bring novel medicines to market in diabetes and cardiovascular medicine. She is a proud alumna of Howard University, earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration-marketing.
Prior to joining the school board, Hurd Johnson was actively involved in District 97 schools as a parent leader for eight years, holding co-president roles in the Mann PTO, PTO Diversity Council and PTO Council. She has lived in Oak Park for the past 15 years with her husband Oscar and two sons, who currently attend Julian Middle School and Oak Park River Forest High School. She enjoys travel, crafting and tennis.
Nancy Ross Dribin: Board Member
Nancy Ross Dribin was elected to the District 97 Board of Education on April 6, 2021. Her term on the board will expire in 2025.
Ross Dribin has nearly three decades of experience in education research and resource development with a focus on science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM). Her career has included classroom research and resource development with the EDC Center for Children and Technology and practical implementation and leadership at Shedd Aquarium, the Chicago History Museum, and Adler Planetarium, where she served as the Director of Interactive Media. She has conducted observations and completed data collection in schools and school districts across the country.
As Director of Interactive Media at Adler Planetarium, Ross Dribin oversaw all new media projects, including distance learning programs, technology camps, the Adler Night and Day podcast, Adler Teens, exhibition multimedia interactive development, and the redesign of the Adler website. Most recently, Ross Dribin worked as a senior research analyst conducting user experience research and synthesis with a number of large nonprofit companies. She is currently staying at home to help her children with school as needed during the pandemic and work on writing projects.
In addition to her work, Ross Dribin has spent significant time volunteering with District 97. She and her husband, Dave, have two children at Beye Elementary School. At Beye, Ross Dribin served as a room lead, vice president of technology for the PTO, stage hand for the talent show, and tutor with BeyePASS. Two years ago, she joined the district-wide iLearn technology committee. Additionally, she volunteered with OPEF to assist with fifth-grade robots instruction in schools across the District.
Ross Dribin holds a bachelor's degree in architecture from Wellesley College and a Master of Professional Studies in interactive telecommunications from New York University Tisch School of the Arts.
Gavin Kearney: Board Member
Gavin Kearney was elected to the District 97 Board of Education on April 2, 2019. His term on the board will expire in 2023.
Kearney is an attorney and the senior director of multi-state advocacy at the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, which is a non-profit law firm that works with communities to address economic and racial inequality. In his role, Kearney partners with advocates from across the country on issues like criminal justice reform, protecting and expanding the safety net to meet basic human needs, and defending the rights of immigrant communities.
Prior to joining the Shriver Center, Kearney spent over 12 years at New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI) in New York City. There he directed NYLPI's Environmental Justice Program and worked hand-in-hand with community organizers and coalitions to fight for healthy environments, development that is responsive to community needs, and safe, living wage jobs.
Kearney earned his bachelor's degree in philosophy from Lawrence University and his Juris Doctor from the University of Minnesota. He and his family moved to Oak Park in 2015. His wife Tasha is an educator and administrator in the Harrison Pathways Program at National Louis University, and their two children attend Irving Elementary School.
Shyla Kinhal: Board Member
Shyla Kinhal was appointed to the District 97 Board of Education on Sept. 28, 2021. Her term on the board will expire in 2023.
Kinhal is currently the senior manager of early childhood and elementary literacy at the KIPP Foundation, which supports a nationwide network of college-preparatory, public charter schools. She has more than 15 years of experience in education, including eight years teaching in New York City Public Schools.
Prior to her work with the KIPP Foundation, Kinhal served as program director of Leading Educators, a Chicago non-profit supporting school districts in implementing equitable instruction, high-quality curriculum and customized professional development. Over the course of her career in education, Kinhal has worked in partnership with teachers, school and district leaders, families and students to build stronger, more inclusive schools.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in teaching from Pace University.
Outside of work, Kinhal serves on the Parent Advisory Council of the Day Nursery in Oak Park. She and her husband moved to Oak Park in 2019 with their two young daughters, who will eventually attend Lincoln Elementary School.
Email: [email protected]
Cheree Moore: Board Member
Cheree Moore was elected to the District 97 Board of Education on April 2, 2019. Her term on the board will expire in 2023.
Moore currently serves as a talent acquisition manager for Destiny Dental in Oak Park, which seeks to hire dental professionals to work in underserved communities around the country. Prior to that, Moore was the assistant director of engagement for the University of Illinois at Chicago, the associate director of development for Chicago Kent College of Law and a development associate for DePaul University.
Moore's professional background, coupled with her desire to aid and assist underrepresented communities, have led her to volunteer with organizations such as Heartland Alliance, Junior Achievements and Step Up Women's Network. She has also served as a commissioner for the Village of Oak Park's Community Relations Commission, and taken part in several local projects that are focused on strengthening equity and inclusion throughout the community.
Moore is a proud alumna of Clark Atlanta University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in political science. She also has a master's degree in public administration from DePaul University.
Moore and her husband Koye have three children who attend Longfellow Elementary School.
Holly Spurlock: Board Member
Holly Spurlock was elected to her second term on the District 97 Board of Education on April 2, 2019. Her current term will expire in 2023.
Spurlock is currently a director in the Strategic Claims Unit for CNA Insurance. Prior to joining CNA, Spurlock was the vice president of Risk Management and Legal Affairs for Vivid Seats. She also served as the head of global risk operations at Groupon, where she led a 150-person team that was responsible for financial, legal, public relations and risk mitigation in 48 countries, as well as for driving data-driven process change across all departments. Spurlock was a practicing attorney for 11 years before shifting to risk management.
As an attorney, Spurlock had the opportunity to work on a variety of education-related pro bono projects, including representing a local organization focused on replicating the Harlem Children's Promise Zone, supporting kids and their families from cradle to college, and working closely with business leaders who joined together for the C.A.R.E. initiative against violence in the city of Chicago.
Spurlock has a bachelor’s degree in Humanities from the University of Texas at Austin, an MBA from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and a Juris Doctor from Northwestern University. She, her husband and her two children, who attend District 97 schools, moved to Oak Park in September 2012.
Lonya Boose: Board Secretary
Lonya Boose was hired by District 97 in December 2004. She worked as an administrative assistant at Julian Middle School until April 2021, when she was appointed as the executive assistant to the superintendent and secretary to the board of education.
Prior to her tenure with the district, Boose worked as an accounts payable supervisor for Dean Foods. She has has a bachelor's degree in educational leadership from DePaul University.