Board of Trustees rings in new leadership

By Abigale Svoboda

The Board of Trustees welcomes new leadership, as Edward McMillan was appointed chairman and Timothy Killeen was officially elected as the next University president. 

The Board’s Jan. 15 meeting began with official nominations and elections for the chair position, two executive seats and the University president. 

Gov. Bruce Rauner was not in attendance; however, Thursday marked the beginning of his service as an ex-officio Board member. Upon Rauner’s election in November, former chairman Chris Kennedy and executive member Pam Strobel chose not to run for re-election. 

To begin the elections, Trustee James Montgomery nominated McMillan as chairman, naming a few of McMillan’s accomplishments to bolster his nomination.

McMillan graduated from the University in 1969 with a bachelor of science degree in agriculture. McMillan has worked as an external advisor for the College of ACES and sat on the board of directors of the University’s Alumni Association from 1995 to 2008. He is currently the principal and CEO of McMillan L.L.C, a transaction consulting firm. 

“It’s been wonderful working along side him as a fellow trustee,” Montgomery said.

As chairman, McMillan’s responsibilities include appointing trustees to each of the standing committees of the Board, as well as naming a chair of each committee. He will also serve as chairman ex-officio of the Board of Trustees Executive Committee and will preside over all Board meetings.  

“I just want to say thank you to all of you,” McMillan said. “This has been a great team to serve with, and I look forward to us together serving.”

Following McMillan’s election, Trustee Patricia Holmes nominated her “dear friend,” Trustee Montgomery as the first executive committee member. Holmes noted that Montgomery not only completed his undergraduate degree at the University, but also attended law school at Urbana’s campus. Currently, Montgomery owns his own law firm: James D. Montgomery & Associates. 

Karen Hasara was nominated as the second executive committee member. Hasara is a University of Illinois at Springfield alumna and is currently the chair of the Committee on Academic and Student Affairs. Additionally, Hasara has served as the Mayor of Springfield and as an Illinois senator for the 50th district.

The Board also unanimously elected Timothy Killeen as the 20th University President. His position is effective when current President Robert Easter retires on June 30, 2015.

Susan Kies was re-elected as secretary of the Board and Walter Knorr was also re-elected as comptroller.

Abigale can be reached at [email protected]