Meet Our Board of Education
Gary Knight, has served on the board of education for 11 years and is currently the board president. Gary and his family have lived in the district for 38 years and during this time his two children graduated from Laraway School. He has also coached basketball at Laraway School for a number of years. Gary is a retired Will County Sherriff. During his time in the department, Gary participated in many educational and training opportunities to allow him to best serve the community. Professional development completed 9/5/12 and open meetings act completed 9/5/12.
Marge Fleet, has served on the board for 11 years. She is a 36 year member of the community and a former Laraway graduate herself. Marge not only has served the education community as a board member at Laraway, she has also worked in the education field and has a master’s degree in education. Professional development completed 4/12/12 and open meetings act completed 4/12/12.
Michelle Matenaer, is the school board secretary and was elected in the spring of 2015 to a four year term. Michelle and her family have lived in the district for 10 years. She is the proud mother of two children who attend the Laraway schools. She is a Wisconsin native and a graduate form West Bend East High in Wisconsin. She is looking forward to serving the community. Combined with her service on the board of education, Michelle is a member of the Laraway Parent Teacher Organization and a Girl Scout Leader. Professional development completed 6/4/16 and open meetings act completed 6/16/15.
Saul Brass, is the school board vice president. He has lived in the district for 30 years and has served on the board of education for a total of 22 years, with his first term starting in 1989. When Saul first was elected to the board, he was employed at Caterpillar, Inc. and worked for the company for 40 years. He retired in 2012 as a senior Manufacturing Engineering Manager. Saul is a 1969 graduate of Joliet Central High School. Upon graduation he attended Joliet Junior College where he completed the Caterpillar’s Manufacturing Engineering Apprentice Program. He is married to his wife Edna, a retired educator, and their three daughters, who also work in the education field. Saul takes great pride in the education and extra-curricular programs Laraway provides for its students. Professional development completed 11/21/16 and open meetings act completed 6/16/15.
Phil Rausch, Phil Rausch, his wife Debra, and their two daughters Alyssa and Hannah have been residents in Joliet, and the Laraway School District, for 13+ years. He is a proud grandpa to his grandson Connor, who is 5 years old. Hannah joined Oak Valley as a kindergartener and graduated as Valedictorian from Laraway in June of 2015. Phil is currently serving his second term on the Laraway school board, with portions of the term being Vice President. Phil’s philosophy for the Laraway School District is, “it is all about the children” and feels it is part of his responsibility to ensure the student, staff, and faculty are provided with the tools necessary to help them succeed. Phil enjoys being active in the community by serving in a bi-weekly food pantry through the Church he and his family attend, as well as other opportunities presented. Phil’s hobbies include boating, camping, tennis, golf and spending time with his family and two dogs. Professional development completed 11/17/12 and open meetings act completed 11/17/12.
Ron Hopkins, has lived in the Laraway community for 11 years. He is our newest board member being seated in December of 2015. Ron is a retired Illinois Department of Corrections officer and he is also the former scheduler for the Will County Crisis Line. Ron graduated from the University of St. Francis earning a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and has also earned graduate credit in the field of Psychology from Lewis University. He has also proudly served our country in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War. He is also a member of the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Professional development completed 2/14/16 and open meetings act completed 2/14/16.
Gary Washington, has served on the board for 8 years. Gary, his wife Kathy and his children have proudly lived in the district for 22 years. His two daughters Breanna and Brittany, and son Braden, are graduates of Laraway School District 70c. He is currently employed as a Chemical Operator in the Joliet area. Gary is committed to the improvement and excellence of the Laraway school district. Professional development completed 11/21/16 and open meetings act completed 6/16/15.
We serve each child for the purpose of helping reach his or her full potential as a life-long learner.
It is the business of learning that inspires us to teach.
Our ultimate goal is to positively contribute to the betterment of the communities in which WE live.