IVCC Board names presidential search committee


OGLESBY – The Illinois Valley Community College board appointed a 12-member presidential search advisory committee Thursday that includes community leaders, trustees and IVCC faculty, staff and administrators.

The committee includes LaSalle County Regional Office of Education Supt. Chris Dvorak; trustees Jane Goetz and Bill Hunt; student trustee Austin Dille; instructors Art Koudelka, Tracy Lee and Mike Phillips; Foundation President Dr. Susan Schmitt; administrators Dr. Gary Roberts and Jennifer Scheri; and staff members Dr. Kathy Hart and Marlene Merkel.

Led by search consultant and former Seneca High School Supt. Dr. Jim Carlson, the committee will review applications, select semi-finalists and conduct round 1 interviews before recommending a slate of candidates to the board.

From that list, the board will select 3-5 candidates for final interviews before choosing IVCC’s 11th president. Applications are due by Oct. 9 at www.ivcc.edu/presidentialsearch; the board expects to name a president by the end of the fall semester.

In a related action, trustees approved Dr. Jerry Corcoran’s retirement request. Corcoran, president the past 14 years, announced Aug. 18 he will retire June 30 after 33 years at the college. 

In a letter, Corcoran said, “My love for being on a college campus began in 1970 (at the University of Illinois) and has never gone away. So many of the students I have met have been inspirational and I have enjoyed watching them achieve their academic and career goals.

“Our financial position is strong, facilities are beautiful, we have the best technology money can buy and a well-deserved reputation for quality.”

In other business, the board approved:

  • The annual $10,000 match for the Project Success TRiO grant to help participants with tuition, books and supplies. Project Success serves about 160 low-income and first-generation students as well as students with physical or learning disabilities.
  • A master plan update by DKA Architects of Chicago for approximately $30,000. The plan was last updated in 2018.
  • Phase 1 of a farm tiling project not to exceed $100,000. The project will begin after harvest and cover about half the tiling needed.
  • Hiring Scott Fox as manufacturing and advanced machining instructor effective Sept. 9. Fox, a former part-time IVCC instructor, has 23 years of experience in manufacturing.
  • Resignation of nursing instructor Jessie Bouxsein effective Oct. 7.
  • Details regarding filing nominating petitions for the April 4 trustee election. Petitions must be filed 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Dec. 12-16 or 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Dec. 19 with board secretary Judy Day in Room C301. Seats held by Bill Hunt, Dr. Maureen Rebholz and Angie Stevenson are up for election for six-year terms.
  • Closed session minutes from Aug. 18.

The board also learned:

  • That IVCC is a member of a consortium that will share in a $5 million federal Strengthening Community Colleges Training grant to be used for manufacturing and logistics needs. The college will also receive a $580,000 grant to support a Pipeline for the Advancement of the Healthcare Workforce initiative. Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs Bonnie Campbell was credited for helping design both projects.  
  • Campbell, who is retiring from full-time work at the end of September, was recognized for 25 years of service to the college.
  • A tentative five-year agreement has been reached with Constellation Energy Nuclear Power Station (formerly Exelon) that will increase the plant’s value 14 percent – resulting in an additional $235,000 in property taxes to IVCC beginning in FY24.
  • Sarah Goetz has been hired as Student Services information specialist and Mark Cotter as Truck Driver Training specialist.
  • Pending Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) approval, the dental hygiene will admit students in fall 2023 and begin second-year hygiene courses in fall 2024.
  • The 26th annual scholarship recognition reception Sept. 1 drew a record 441 scholarship recipients, donors and guests to the gym. Corcoran credited Foundation and Community Relations staff Fran Brolley, Donna Swiskoski, Janice Corrigan and Samantha Manahan and volunteers Angie Dunlap, Peggy Schneider, Aseret Loveland, Gracelyn Quesse, Susan Monroe, Ashlee Fitzpatrick, Kim Herout, and Chad Brokaw.

Corcoran said, “There’s something magical about seeing generous donors and their scholarship recipients meeting for the first time. It often leads to relationships that last a lifetime.”

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