Illinois Board of Higher Education Members

The Illinois Board of Higher Education consists of 16 members as follows: 10 public members are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate, one of which must be a faculty member at an Illinois public university; one member of a public university governing board appointed by the Governor; one member of a private college or university board of trustees appointed by the Governor; the chairman of the Illinois Community College Board; the chairman of the Illinois Student Assistance Commission; and two student members selected by the Student Advisory Committee of the Board of Higher Education, one must be a non-traditional undergraduate student who is at least 24 years old. The Governor shall designate the Chairman of the Board to serve until a successor is designated. 

Tom Cross - Board Chair, Public Member
11 Partridge Square
Oswego, IL 60543
(217) 782-255

Professional - Distinguished Fellow, Aurora University
GraduateIllinois Wesleyan University; Samford University, Cumberland School of Law

John Bambenek - Ex Officio Member representing the Chair of the Illinois Community College Board
313 N Mattis Ave, Suite 113A
Champaign, IL 61821
(217) 493-0760

Professional - President of Bambenek Consulting, Ltd.
Graduate - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Home - Champaign

Jay D. Bergman - Public Member
108 East Ogden Avenue
Hinsdale, Illinois 60521
(630) 654-2282

Professional - President and CEO, Petco Petroleum Corporation of Hinsdale
Graduate - Illinois State University
Home - Joliet

Max Coffey - Public Member
739 Glenwood Drive
Charleston, IL 62441
(217) 348-0079

Professional - President & CEO, Kimco USA Inc.

Sherry Eagle - Representative of Public Universities
505 North McClurg Court, Unit 2702
Chicago, IL 60611
(630) 399-7243

Professional - Executive Director Institute for Collaboration, Aurora University
GraduateUniversity of Illinois at Chicago, University of Chicago and Northern Illinois University

Jane Hays - Public Member
The Downey Group
505 Devonshire Drive
Champaign, IL 61820
(217) 356-7263

Professional - Managing Director for The Downey Group
GraduateUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and University of Illinois College of Law

Alice Marie Jacobs - Public Member
P.O. Box 230
Bismarck, IL 61814
(217) 260-8343

Professional - President, Danville Area Community College
GraduateMichigan State University, Western Michigan University, Louisburg College, North Carolina

Cherilyn Murer - Public Member
16030 West 143rd Street
Homer Glen, IL 60491
(815) 685-3389

Professional - Past President and CEO, Murer Consultants
GraduateLewis University and Northern Illinois University Law School
HomeHomer Glen

Santos Rivera - Public Member
2020 N. California Avenue
STE 7, #190
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 329-0608

Professional - Emeritus Senior Executive, NEIU
GraduateAurora College, Northeastern Illinois University, The Union Institute Graduate School

Darlene Ruscitti - Public Member
421 N. County Farm Road
Wheaton, IL 60187
(630) 688-0973

Professional - Superintendent of Schools, DuPage Regional Office of Education
GraduateNortheastern Illinois University and Loyola University

Jack Thomas - Public Member
President, Western Illinois University
1 University Circle
Macomb, IL 61455
(309) 298-1824

Professional - President, Western Illinois University
GraduateAlabama A & M University; Virginia State University; Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Christine Wiseman - Representative of Private Universities
40 Shadow Creek Circle
Palos Heights, IL 60463
(402) 658-5371

Professional - President Emerita of St. Xavier University
GraduateMarquette University and Marquette University College of Law
HomePalos Heights

Eric Zarnikow - Ex Officio Member representing the Chair of the Illinois Students Assistance Commission
1755 Lake Cook Road
Deerfield, Illinois 60015
(217) 782-2020

Professional - Executive Director, Illinois Student Assistance Commission
Graduate - Iowa State University; Drake University
Home - Buffalo Grove

Akya Gossitt - Non-Traditional Student Board Member
6515 S. Yale Ave., Apt. 1c
Chicago, IL 60621
(708) 829-3226

Student at Governors State University
Major: Social Work
Home: Chicago

Natalie Pieper - Student Board Member
1209 W. Arthur Ave.
Chicago, IL 60626
(402) 326-9800

Student at Loyola University Chicago
Major: Political Science
Home: Chicago