North Central College welcomes three new members to Board of Trustees

May 19, 2014

North Central College has welcomed three new members to its Board of Trustees: Kathryn Birkett of Geneva and Naperville residents Robin Boren and Thomas Harter Sr.

Birkett has served as superintendent of schools for Indian Prairie School District 204 since July 2009. She retires in June after dedicating more than three decades to the district, including serving as a teacher, assistant principal, principal and assistant deputy superintendent.

As the superintendent of Illinois’ third largest school district—33 schools serve 29,000 students—Birkett made progress in closing achievement gaps with minority students; placed the district on solid financial footings despite cuts in state educational funding; and realized strong community approval ratings in the area of communications.

Birkett was one of 28 superintendents selected nationwide to serve on the League of Innovative Schools as part of the Digital Promise Initiative of the U.S. Department of Education. As a result, she implemented Bring Your Own Technology in District 204 classrooms. She was also one of 100 superintendents selected nationally to participate in the Education Research and Development Institute, reviewing the latest innovative educational programs and products.

She is active in the community, currently serving as a member of Naperville Rotary and is on the executive committee/board of directors of Metropolitan Chicago YMCA. She is also a board member of Large Unit School District Association, Naperville Heritage Society and Naperville Development Partnership. She has served on the board of directors of Edward Hospital.

Birkett earned her bachelor’s degree at Western Kentucky University and both her master’s degree and doctorate in educational administration (Ed.D.) at Northern Illinois University. 

Boren, president of Pivotal Home Solutions since 2012, is responsible for ensuring the satisfaction of holders of 1.2 million service agreements while also overseeing a network of more than 700 service providers. Under her leadership, the company has doubled in size with a strategic acquisition, expanded its reach in five states and completed a company-wide rebranding campaign.

Pivotal Home Solutions—an Illinois-based company providing a suite of home protection products and services in the area of energy service delivery, systems and appliances—is an AGL Resources company. Boren joined AGL Resources in 2009, playing a strategic role in the company’s merger with Nicor Inc. in 2011. She secured financing for the cash consideration of the merger and also led the financing or refinancing of short- and long-term debt totaling more than $2 billion for the company that year. She has served as assistant treasurer and was responsible for corporate finance functions, including bank and rating agency relationships, capital market and merger and acquisition activities. Prior to joining AGL Resources, she was a senior capital markets originator for SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc.

Boren serves on the AGL Resources’ LEAD (Leadership, Empowerment, Acceptance, Diversity) Council and contributes to charitable causes that make a positive impact on communities in Illinois, including United Way, March of Dimes and American Red Cross Greater Chicago Region.

Boren is a graduate of Presbyterian College and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.  She lives in Naperville with her husband and daughter.

Harter founded Microdynamics Group in 1974, after working as director of marketing at International Harvester for 11 years. He currently serves as president, CEO and chairman of the board at Microdynamics Group, a private, family-owned business, initially created to provide microfiche archival services. It is now a leading provider of personalized transactional printing, inserting and mailing services.

Microdynamics Group clients include a wide variety of financial institutions, credit unions, commercial and industrial enterprises, health care and utility companies. Under Harter’s leadership, Microdynamics has been named to the Crain’s Chicago Business Fast Fifty, a list of the fastest growing businesses in the Chicago area, and to the Inc. Top 5000 list of fastest growing companies nationwide.

In 2008, Microdynamics acquired the transactional mail portion of MetroGroup Corporation and additional assets and transactional business from LaserTech. The company currently produces more than 400 million pieces of mail annually for about 200 clients.

Tom and his wife Brenda live in Naperville. They have two sons; Thomas Jr. serves as senior vice president of sales at Microdynamics and Scott is a doctor.