Maine East Leadership Team


Maine East Department Heads / Contact Information

Ken Wallace

 

Dr. Ken Wallace, Superintendent
Dr. Ken Wallace is in his 12th year with Maine Township High School District 207, first as Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction and for the past 8 years as Superintendent. While Dr. Wallace was Assistant Superintendent he led improvements in the District’s technology program that included becoming Google’s first k-12 partner and pioneering 1:1 learning.

In 2015, Maine 207 received an International Digital Content and Curriculum Achievement Award from the Center for Digital Education, and was named one of America’s 14 Most Innovative School Systems in April of 2016 by Tech Insider. Dr. Wallace has made teacher leadership and job-embedded professional development a focus. District 207 is perhaps the only U.S. district that includes annual instructional coaching plans for all teachers who work with peer teacher coaches. One of the District’s four coaching paths includes authentic teacher action research, and the District has developed a research consortium with Northwestern, Illinois ASCD, several other universities and local Districts.

An educator for 31 years, Dr. Wallace was a high school English and journalism teacher for five years and taught computer science for six years. He holds B.S. and M.S. Degrees from the University of Southern Indiana and Ed.S and Ph.D degrees from Indiana State University. Dr. Wallace was named the 2017 Illinois Association of Career and Technical Education Champion of the year for the District’s innovative work to improve college and career counseling and experiences for every District student.

Mike Pressler


 

Dr. Mike Pressler, Principal - Maine East High School
Dr. Pressler is dedicated to a strengths-focused approach to teaching and learning that honors each student’s individual assets and proclivities as the basis for creating relevant and engaging learning experiences. Helping students identify interests and passions and then weaving those into learning experiences at school is central to his personal educational mission.

Dr. Pressler has been a District 207 administrator for 25 years: he has been Principal at Maine East since 2010, following five years as Assistant Principal for Instruction. He earlier served as Fine Arts Department Chair and Director of Bands at Maine South, during which time the department received state and national recognition for exemplary arts education programs. Before coming to Maine 207, he taught at Lyons Township High School, Wichita East High School (KS), and in downstate Carlinville, Illinois. Pressler holds a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from National-Louis University, a Master of Science in Music Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and he graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Music from Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas. Additionally he has completed advanced degree course work in public school administration at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Dr. Linda Rutschke

 

Dr. Linda Rutschke - Associate Principal
Dr. Rutschke has been a member of the District 207 community since 2001. For 4 years she was the science department chair at Maine West. From July of 2005 until June of 2010 she was the Assistant Principal for Instruction at Maine South. Since 2010 she has been the Associate Principal at Maine East.

Before coming to Maine Dr. Rutschke was a science teacher, for 13 years at York Community High School in Elmhurst, Illinois. She has an undergraduate degree in Biology from Elmhurst College, a Master's degree in Biology from Northeastern Illinois University, a Master's in Administration from Loyola University and a doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction from Northern Illinois University.

Dr. Rutschke has always had a strong passion for education. She knew early on that she wanted to be a teacher and continues to enjoy watching the outstanding teaching that takes place at Maine East High School.

Dino Di Legge   Mr. Dino Di Legge

Mr. Di Legge is a proud product of District 207 as a Maine East graduate of the Class of '87. Having both taught and coached in all three Maine Schools during his career, Mr. Di Legge is a passionate supporter of the benefits of extracurricular participation and student success. Mr. Di Legge has been a District 207 administrator since 2002. He has been Assistant Principal of Students at Maine East since 2003, following one year as Dean of Students.

He earlier served for five years as a business teacher in the CTE Department at all three Maine Schools. Before coming to Maine 207, he taught at York High School in Elmhurst. Mr. Di Legge holds a Master's Degree in Educational Leadership from National-Louis University and a Bachelor's of Science in Business Education fromt he University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Additionally, he has completed coursework in Health and Public Safety at Chicago State University. 

Allison Gest


 

Mrs. Allison Gest - Assistant Principal for Teaching and Learning
Mrs. Gest becomes Assistant Principal for Teaching and Learning after serving as Science Department Chair at Maine East, where she provided strong leadership for the department's PLT's and implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards. Prior to that, she taught science at Maine South and was a Building Instructional Coach. She has considerable experience in providing professional development at the building and district level in addition to her work as a presenter outside the district.

She holds a Bachelor of Science degree and Master of Education degree from the University of Minnesota, a Master of Science degree from Mississippi State University and a Master of Arts from Aurora University.

Michael Wartick

 

Mr. Michael Wartick - Assistant Principal for Student Services
Mr. Wartick is passionate about helping students reach their full potential and supporting them in and out of the classroom setting so they can get the most out of their experience at Maine East. He is a strong advocate for students pursuing their passions and becoming an active member of our diverse community. Whether you are 15 or 50, Mr. Wartick believes that everyone should be a life-long learner, and he strives to instill that belief in students.

Mr. Wartick has served as Assistant Principal for Student Services at Maine East High School since 2014. Previously, he was a school counselor and department chair for student services at Highland High School, in southern Illinois. He holds a Master's of Education in Educational Organization and Leadership from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a Master's of Education in School Counseling from Loyola University-Chicago, and a Bachelor's of Arts in Psychology/Religion from Greenville College, in Greenville, Illinois.

    Deans
Michael Bender
Nelly Diaz
Jeff Parlette


Department Chairs
Patrick Fonsino & Rebecca Stewart, Career & Technical Education
Dr. Daniel Gleason, English
Sharon Baima, Foreign Language/ESL
Edward Eubank, Fine Arts
Jill Sweetwood, Mathematics
Theresa Bonifazi, Physical Education/Health Lead Teacher
Mitch Melton, Science
Carl Brownell, Social Science
Julie Deka, Special Education
Claire Empfield, Maine Township Transition Program


​Athletics
Steven Schanz, Athletic Director
Ron Clark, Assistant Athletic Director




Dr. Mike Pressler, Principal - Maine East High School
Dr. Pressler is dedicated to a strengths-focused approach to teaching and learning that honors each student’s individual assets and proclivities as the basis for creating relevant and engaging learning experiences. Helping students identify interests and passions and then weaving those into learning experiences at school is central to his personal educational mission.

Pressler has been a District 207 administrator for 25 years: he has been Principal at Maine East since 2010, following five years as Assistant Principal for Instruction. He earlier served as Fine Arts Department Chair and Director of Bands at Maine South, during which time the department received state and national recognition for exemplary arts education programs. Before coming to Maine 207, he taught at Lyons Township High School, Wichita East High School (KS), and in downstate Carlinville, Illinois. Pressler holds a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from National-Louis University, a Master of Science in Music Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and he graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Music from Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas. Additionally he has completed advanced degree course work in public school administration at UIUC.

  • Maine North High School
  • Frost Academy