September 2023

September 2023


Joe Chianakas, ’01  has published a new novel titled, “Singlets and Secrets”.  It became the #1 bestseller in all LGBTQ young adult fiction on Amazon overnight.  The publisher describes the book as “Dripping with raw emotion, unexpected twists and more than a dash of hope, ‘Singlets and Secrets’ isn’t just more high school drama. It’s a deep dive into figuring out who you are and accepting it no matter what someone else may think – a heroic journey that speaks to the struggling teenager in us all.” For more information visit:


Nabi (Ben Hage) Elhajj, ’09 was selected as Director of Innovate Springfield.  Innovate Springfield is the University of Illinois Springfield’s business incubator.  Innovate Springfield is working with 80 companies and aims to accelerate the growth of startups and established businesses.


Lisa (Larson) Winker ’87 started a new position and is the first Illinois Regional Admissions Officer for the University of Florida.


Jordan Dehm ’22 celebrated his 3rd work anniversary at Versa Press, Inc.  He began his professional career in customer service and then moved into a sales representative role which has afforded him opportunities to travel for work. 


Jimmy Peterson, ’22 started a new position as Hitting Coach and Strength and Conditioning Coach at Southeastern Community College in Whiteville, North Carolina.

Brad Sutton, ’99 started a new position as Chief Medical Officer for AF Solutions at Boston Scientific.


Zach Wakid, ’12 started a new position as Private Investigator at Meador Investigations and Process Service.


Jackie Bohm, ’15 started a new position as an educator for 7th grade English at Ladysmith Middle School in Wisconsin.


Chris Gibson, ’20 started a new position as AP Accounts, Project Manager at OSF HealthCare.

Corrie (Heck) Scott, ’06 started a new position as Conservation Communications Director at The Nature Conservancy.


Heather Rod, ’11 started a new position as Communications Specialist in Public Affairs at State Farm.


Dawn (La Follette) Shipman, ’96 started a new position as Director of Sales at Reinhart Landscaping and Snow.


Bryce Swanson, ’11, started a new position as Manager of Food and Beverage Department at VenuWorks of Cedar Rapids.


Vincent Vega, ’19 started a new position as Legal Analyst at Illinois Secretary of State.


Jacob Baldwin, ’21 started a new position as Accounts Receivable Analyst at Nexstar Media Group, Inc.

Kennedy Jackson, ’22 started a new position as Student and Family Engagement Case Manager at Regional Office of Education #33.


Kyle Henderson, ’20 started a new position as District Sales Manager at Kirby Building Systems.


Camille Yount Rich, ’07 started a new position as Executive Client Relations Specialist at PNC.


Abby Swope, ’22 started a new position as Dispatcher for the Canton Police Department.


Cade Fawcett, ’18 is celebrating 5 years at COUNTRY Financial.


Steve Kirk, ’87 is celebrating 13 years at Illinois Department of Transportation.


Samantha Peacock, ’12 started a new position as Senior Market Strategy Specialist with 3 Enrollment Marketing.



In Memoriam


Click on the name below to read the complete obituary.  


Michael McCormick, former faculty member

Jeff Thompson, former faculty member