Mark your calendar for Wednesday, June 29 at 7 p.m., when The Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest will host its 2022 Annual Meeting at Oak Park River Forest Museum.
The meeting will include a brief business session and report on the 2021-22 fiscal year. There will be a presentation of the 2022-23 Board Slate for 3-year terms ending in 2025. This year’s nominees are Fran Knechel, Nancy Lynn, and Jennie Stevens. In addition, we will bestow our annual volunteer awards on Fran Knechel, Brian Flora, and Don Vogel.
Following the business session, we invite all members and friends to a sneak preview of excerpts from “The Ebony Streak,” a readers’ theater presentation authored by local actor and playwright, Kevin Bry. It tells the true story of Lewis Pope, an African-American student and football star at Oak Park River Forest High School in 1937, and the controversy surrounding an invitation for the football team to play a Christmas Day game in Miami, Florida—if they left their star player at home. All are welcome to attend!
2022-23 Slate for Renewing a 3-year Term on The Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest Board of Directors
Nancy Lynn has been an Oak Park resident since 1987, where she and her husband Andy Teitelman raised their two children who are now grown with families of their own. Now retired, Nancy was a fund raising professional in Chicago for 35+ years on staff at the Newberry Library, Metropolitan Family Services and the Chicago Public Library Foundation, and as a consultant with Charles Feldstein on capital campaigns for the Art Institute of Chicago, Lincoln Park Zoo, Lyric Opera and others. She retired from the Library Foundation in 2017. One of Nancy’s most rewarding volunteer experiences in Oak Park was her 10-year tenure on the Oak Park Education Foundation board during her children’s school years. She looks forward to continuing her service on the Oak Park River Forest Museum board as the organization expands its community reach and welcomes all to its amazing museum space on Lake Street.
Jennie Stevens moved out of Oak Park to attend the University of Illinois and to pursue a career as a librarian, including graduate school in Colorado. She graduated from OPRF High School after living here for the first 18 years of her life, which cemented her connection to her hometown. Friends, family and organizations she is part of keep her visiting regularly, and she says her childhood memories are populated by staples of the community including the Maze Library, Hole in the Wall Custard Shop, and Scoville Park. Serving on the Oak Park River Forest Museum board is a wonderful opportunity as it combines her passion for volunteering, connecting people with information, and enthusiasm for Oak Park.
Fran Knechel moved from St. Louis to Oak Park in the fall of 2015 with her young family. With years of experience teaching social studies to high school students and developing curriculum to analyze primary sources, Fran now enjoys planning programs for the Museum. Fran continues to learn about the community and engage through block party planning, volunteering at Unity Temple Unitarian Universalist Congregation, co-chairing the Beye PTO Fitness and Nutrition team, running with local group Best Food Forward, and frequenting all area grocery stores and the farmer’s market for her baking and cooking hobbies. Fran realized the value of local history while at Haverford College in 2004 when she researched and wrote her senior history thesis about a relatively obscure woman whose letter Fran accessed through the college’s collection and traced back to its original 1863 location in present-day West Virginia.