Former Bolingbrook VVSD Superintendent Gets New Job In Minooka

The Minooka 201 Board of Education is pleased to announce the approval of Mrs. Rachel Kinder as the next Superintendent of Schools, effective July 1, 2024. With the approval of a three-year employment contract, this concludes the extensive search for a successor following the announcement of Superintendent Dr. Kris Monn’s departure, who will assume the role of Executive Director/CEO of Illinois Association of School Business Officials, on June 30, 2024, after nine years of dedicated service to Minooka 201.

The Board thanks the many students, parents, staff, and community members who participated in providing feedback to the Board as they conducted an extensive search process over the last two months. “Superintendent Kinder brings a wealth of experience in public education, exceptional leadership qualities, and a deep commitment to student success,” said Emily Conquest, Board President. “We are confident she will lead our district with integrity, compassion, and innovation.”

Superintendent Kinder will come to Minooka 201 with more than 20 years of dedicated service in PK-12 public education, having served in a multitude of roles, including English as a Second Language and Spanish teacher, department chair, building administrator, district leader, and superintendent. She most recently served four years as a Superintendent and nine years as Assistant Superintendent in Valley View School District, the 9th largest school district in the state, serving more than 15,000 PK-12+ learners who represent a rich and diverse collection of racial, linguistic, and socioeconomic backgrounds along with more than 2,500 staff members. “Superintendent Kinder has a proven track record of collaborative and inspirational educational leadership. We are confident that she will help us build upon our strengths, bring valuable insights and innovative ideas to our district, and foster an environment where every student can thrive,” said President Conquest.

Through a collaborative approach during her previous leadership roles, Kinder empowered teams to develop and implement improvement efforts to support teaching and learning and a responsive and caring culture for students and staff, leading to strong academic and social-emotional growth for learners. Additionally, she brings a vast level of knowledge and experience working with teams to improve culture and climate, grow family and community partnership efforts, and maximize resources in impactful ways.

Superintendent Kinder obtained her Ed.S. (Education Specialist) Degree in Leadership Innovation and Continuous Improvement, with Superintendent Licensure, from Concordia University Wisconsin, where she is also pursuing her Doctor of Education. She also holds a Master of Arts in Educational Administration from Governors State University, a Master of Education in Instructional Leadership from University of Illinois, Chicago, and a Bachelor of Arts in Business and Spanish Translation, with a Marketing Minor, from Northern Illinois University. She has a deep commitment to utilizing her knowledge, skill, and experience to build inclusive, supportive, and impactful learning environments for children, through strong partnership and communication.

As a lifelong resident of the local area, with the last 18 years as a resident of Minooka, Superintendent Kinder has had the opportunity to see the community grow and evolve and develop deep personal and professional connections, at the local, regional, and state level. President Conquest stated, “We are certain that she will demonstrate a deep level of investment and a commitment to a collaborative partnership that will undoubtedly benefit our entire community.”

“Raising our children in the community and being a part of current community growth efforts, makes this a full-circle moment in my personal and professional journey to have the opportunity to bring my knowledge, skills, and experience home to serve in Minooka 201,” said Kinder. Kinder also serves on the Greater Joliet Area YMCA Board of Directors, supporting the newly forged partnership with the Village of Shorewood to build a new state-of-the-art YMCA facility on Route 52 in Shorewood, bringing great benefit to the Minooka 201 School Community.

“I have great respect for the tradition, history, and strong reputation of the school district and communities. It is an honor to be afforded the responsibility and trust to step into the role of Superintendent. I am extremely grateful and excited to have the opportunity to serve the Minooka 201 Community to lead and support the next chapter of evolution and excellence in service to the Children, Families, and Communities of Minooka 201,” said Superintendent Kinder.

Superintendent Kinder and her husband, a life-long educator serving as a high school principal, are the proud parents of two school-aged children and are active in local youth sports and activities.