Serving as a volunteer board member for a local unit of government can seem intimidating to some, but for Patricia Morissette-Moll, it became a passion. After attending more than 500 board meetings, countless events, and being part of numerous large-scale projects, Morrisette-Moll was recognized at the April 22, 2019 Park Board meeting for her 24 years of service to the board.
Throughout her tenure on the board, Morissette-Moll played a part in a number of significant projects ranging from the renovation of Wilder Mansion and multiple intergovernmental agreements to the creation of The Hub at Berens Park and the completion of The Playground for Everyone, an inclusive playground at Butterfield Park. She also had a role in the installation of the Marjorie Davis Community Garden, rebuilding of East End and Smalley Pools, the construction and completion of the Salt Creek Greenway Trail, and the construction of the softball diamond at Salt Creek Park in partnership with Elmhurst College.
“I initially chose to run for the board because I wanted to ensure equal access to parks and recreational activities for all families and individuals,” said Morissette-Moll, “I’m proud to know that the Elmhurst Park District provides lifelong memories for children, family, and adults. I’ve loved every year I’ve served on the board.”
While she has officially stepped down from the board, Morissette-Moll is looking forward to volunteering at events and being able to get more involved in the community she’s lived in nearly her entire life.
“In our busy modern world, it’s my wish that families still continue to connect using our parks, facilities and programs,” she said, “I think that’s the way we’re going to keep our families connected.”
Filling her shoes won’t be an easy task, but local resident Claire Kubiesa is up for the challenge. Kubiesa was officially sworn in at the Monday, May 13 Park Board meeting. She was born and raised in Elmhurst and attended York High School before graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She then returned to Elmhurst to pursue a masters in Clinical Psychology and later moved to complete her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. But she came back to her Elmhurst roots in 2016 to settle down and start a family, which includes her husband, TJ, and one-year-old son, Palmer.
When Kubiesa saw there was a seat up for election on the Park Board, it was an easy decision to run.
“I enjoyed many programs, classes, and parks offered by the Park District throughout my life,” she said, “My participation in those programs really shaped me into the person and professional I am today. As a young mother, I want the best for my children. This is a wonderful place to raise a family, and I want to be able to give my time back to my community and help continue to enhance the Park District for the future.”
Kubiesa is looking forward to getting to know the Park District in a different light and learning more about its operations and staff. She also plans to familiarize herself with Vision 2020 and related projects that will help shape the future of the Park District.
“I am looking forward to help move these projects forward with more community input. As trends and the needs of our community change I want to be able to support the District on its mission of enriching lives while having fun, and also sustain the core values and vision while offering a fresh perspective.”
Board President Vince Spaeth was also re-elected and sworn in at the Monday, May 13 board meeting. Spaeth is a life-long resident of Elmhurst and is looking forward to continuing the momentum of Vision 2020 and celebrating the District’s 100th anniversary next year.
“We will need a strong board to support the Vision 2020 efforts, and my hope is to continue to update the projects based upon the community’s desires and needs,” Spaeth said.
The Park Board of Commissioners meets the second and fourth Monday of the month at the District’s administrative offices, 375 W. First St.