Ron Bote
Hometown: Born in Manila, Philippines, and moved to Chicago. I mostly grew up in the northern suburbs ofChicago (Glenview). We moved to Madison in 2005.
Education: B.A. in accounting and master’s in taxation, DePaul University, Chicago. I am a CPA.
Career experience: I’ve been in accounting for over 30+ years, primarily taxation-related both in public accounting and private industry. Currently, I am with Wipfli LLP.
Family: Wife, Lisa, and daughters, Sophia (17) and Olivia (14)
Hobbies or interests: I enjoy any outside activities for the most part, including running, biking, golf and hiking, plus yoga. I’ve run many marathons and have participated in multiple Ironmans. I enjoy good food, wine and cheese.
How did you become involved with the foundation? When I started at Wipfli, I had conversations with coworker and former foundation board President Jessica Mac Naughton about my interest in being more involved in the community. She connected me to Executive Director Jenni Jeffress. I got involved with Ex Libris to touch my toes in the water. I soon found myself on he Finance Committee. I’m excited about the opportunity to represent the foundation and become more ingrained in the Madison community, as well as support the value that the library provides Madison.
Why do libraries interest you? I’ve always thought of libraries as magical places of knowledge. Every shelf contains vast amounts of knowledge available at your fingertips. When I was in grade school, there was no internet, computers or mobile phones. If the teacher assigned research projects, you had to go to a public library to do your work. Also, public libraries were for the most part free, so they were a great place to hang out. In college, the library was my fortress of solitude when I had to focus on studying. The internet and big-box bookstores have provided easier access to information, but not everybody can afford them. Libraries make knowledge available to everyone. My daughters are intelligent young women because of reading and access to books.
Jillana Peterson
Hometown: Spring Valley, Wis.
Education: UW-Madison, International and Scandinavian Studies
Career experience: Help Desk at UW-Madison Division of IT; and Advocacy, Success and Social Impact at Zendesk
Family: It’s just me and my cat, Tiger Jillanasson!
Hobbies or interests: Music and travel — all kinds and all places
Why do libraries interest you? I love to read and saw it as the best way to explore the world and other perspectives from my tiny town in northern Wisconsin.
How did you become involved with the foundation? I started volunteering with the library and engaging other Zendesk employees, and eventually joined the Grants Committee before joining the Board of Directors this fall.
Phil Plourd
Hometown: Bristol, Conn.
Education: Fordham University, Bronx, N.Y.
Career experience: (Alleged) dairy market expert — if you have questions about the price of cheese, I have answers.
Family: Wife, Rhonda; daughters, Rebecca and Leah (both students at Monona Grove High School)
Hobbies or interests: Golf and reading
Why do libraries interest you? I have loved books — and being surrounded by books — from a very young age.
How did you become involved with the foundation? I cannot imagine a life without books and a community without libraries. Madison Public Library Foundation offers an opportunity to share and spread the love around reading and libraries, and the critical role they can play in our lives.
Gene Williams
Hometown: Born and raised in Phoenix, Ariz. (third generation), but my family and I reside in Waunakee.
Education: B.S. in Finance and M.B.A. from W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University (Go Sun Devils!! Maroon and Gold for the win!!)
Career experience: 20+ years of banking experience; currently Vice President of Private Client Services at Associated Bank
Family: Wife, Christina; sons, Grey (4) and Zane (3) Hobbies and interests: I’m an avid fly-fishing angler, and I love to explore Wisconsin with my family!
Why do libraries interest you? I’m a self-professed bookworm. Bookworms need a great library!
How did you become involved with the foundation? Jenni’s passion for the foundation was infectious.
What else would you like to share? My family moved to the Madison area in January 2016, so we’re still getting settled in. Coming from Phoenix, I’m always on the hunt for great Sonoran Mexican food.