Last week the District 91 school board added some high-powered academic credentials to its board when it selected Frank Mott to fill out the term of Larry Buckley, who resigned last month after moving to Riverside.

Mott, a 13 year resident of Forest Park, was picked from a field of four persons who had expressed interest in filling out Buckley’s term, which lasts until April of 2007.

Mott, 45, earned bachelors and masters degrees in biology from the University of Illinois. He also spent three years in a doctoral program in developmental biology at the University of Chicago, where he did genetic research before leaving to take a job as a research assistant at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood. He received an MBA from Loyola University in 1998.

He currently works as the Director of Risk Management at Westlake Hospital in Melrose Park.

Mott has three children attending District 91 schools: daughters Olivia, a sixth grader at Forest Park Middle School, and Emily, a fifth grader at Garfield, and son Frank Jr. in junior kindergarten.

He has been active in the Garfield PTA and served as its vice president from 2000 to 2004.

“This is a great opportunity for me to bump up my involvement,” said Mott. “To be involved at a level where actual decisions are being made.”

Mott said that he is interested in making sure the district wisely spends its money.

“I’m big on accountability,” said Mott. “This is taxpayer’s money we’re talking about. We need to be good stewards of the money.”

Mott is the second member of the school board to be appointed recently. In November, Sean Blaylock was selected to fill out the term of Marilyn Garapolo, who also moved out of town. Mott also submitted his name for consideration at that time.

Bob Skolnik