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EIU Foundation

Meet the Board of Directors




H. Mike Finkle, President - Marco Island, Florida

Mike Finkle Vice President

Mike received a B.S. in Business Administration from EIU in 1962. He completed the Wharton School Senior Account Executive certificate program and The American College Estate Planning for Professionals program in 1998. He retired from Raymond James & Associates in 2014, after a 47-year career as a financial advisor. He was cited as one of the nation's top financial advisors by three separate trade publications during his career as an advisor. He is currently the Managing Director and general partner of HMF Global Macro Partners, LLP.

Michael has a long history of leadership in various community service organizations; serving twice as President for the Danville District 118 School Board, Board Chair for the Danville Convention & Visitors Bureau Board and Chair for the UnitedSamaritian Medical Center Divisional Board. He is also a member of the President's Council of the University of Illinois. In 1986 he was named Outstanding Alumnus by EIU Lumpkin College of Business. He is serving his sixth year on the Foundation Board of Directors and currently serves as President. He previously served as Vice President and Treasurer on the Executive Committee, and as Chair of the Oversight & Outreach Committee.



Timothy McCollum, Vice President - Charleston, Illinois

Tim McCollum TreasurerAfter receiving his B.S. in Education in 1973 and his M.S. degree in Zoology from Eastern Illinois University in 1977, Tim retired as a science teacher from Charleston Middle School in 2011. He has received numerous regional, state and national awards for his work in the classroom. Included among those are the 2010 NEA Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence (one of only five recipients nationally), 2008 Golden Apple Award for Teaching Excellence, 2006 Jefferson Award and 2003 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, which was presented to him by then-President George W. Bush during a ceremony in Washington, DC. During his tenure, he also had the opportunity to spend a semester working with the NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston and on a NASA project in Lake Placid. During that time, he assisted in the development of teaching curriculum for educators across the country utilizing photos taken by American astronauts. Tim is also a co-investigator for the NASA project Expedition Earth and Beyond and served on the National Science Board's Commission on 21st Century Education in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.

A former president of the EIU Alumni Association board of directors, he is currently a member of the EIU's early childhood, elementary and middle-level education faculty. Most recently Tim received the 2012 Distinguished Educator Award by the EIU Alumni Association. Tim is currently serving his fifth year on the Foundation Board of Directors. He is currently serving as Vice President.  Additionally, he serves as the Chair of the Oversight & Outreach Committee. He formerly served as Treasurer and Secretary,  on the Executive Committee. His service to the board also includes serving on the Finance/Audit, Real Estate and Scholarships and Grants Committees.  

 Sylvia Nichols - Treasurer - Evansville, Indiana

Sylvia Nichols Secretary

Sylvia is a graduate of EIU where she received her B.S. in Education with a major in Chemistry and was inducted into the mathematics honorary society. She began her teaching career in Lawrenceville, Illinois, where she taught chemistry and mathematics. Sylvia went on to teach chemistry, mathematics, and physics at Red Hill School, Bridgeport, Illinois and Lincoln Trail College, Robinson Illinois. After leaving the teaching profession, she was elected to the Lawrenceville Unit 20 Board of Education and served as President. Concurrently, she and her husband owned and operated Nichols Funeral Homes in Lawrence County. After moving to Edwardsville, Illinois, she became CEO and partner in S&N Graphics, Inc., located in St. Louis, MO. The company manufactured photopolym printing plates and other identification products for the packaging industry. She was a founding member and served as president of the FPPA a national trade association for the industry.

Now retired, she is a member of the American Association of University Women where she served as president. She also served as former president of the EIU Alumni Association. She was an avid volunteer and participant in the EIU capital campaign. In 2011, the Foundation Board named Sylvia as Outstanding Foundation Member. Sylvia is serving her fourth year on the Foundation Board of Directors and currently serves as Treasurer. She also serves as Chair of the Finance/Audit Committee.  Sylvia's service with the board includes having served on the Investment, Real Estate, Scholarships and Grants and as Liaison to the Alumni Association. 

Barbara Baurer, Secretary - Minier, Illinois

Barbara BaurerBarbara earned her Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from EIU in 1975 and a Master of Business Administration in 1976. She most recently retired from Country Financial where she held the position of Chief Operating Officer since 1999.  She also served in various positions including vice president and general manager of the Property and Casualty companies. Prior to that, she served as vice president of Information Services (IS). 

She furthered her education, earning three insurance designations: the Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU). She was also was a member of the Board and Executive Committee of the American Institute for CPCU and is past chair of the Griffith Insurance Education Foundation. In addition, Barbara was named a 2004 Woman of Distinction by the YWCA of McLean County (Ill.). She was named one of Illinois’ Most Powerful and Influential Women of 2010 and 2011 by the National Diversity Council.  She is a former member and past chair of the Eastern Illinois University College of Business Advisory Board and received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Eastern Illinois University in 2006.  She also received an honorary degree from Eastern in 2015.  This is Barbara’s second year as a member of the Foundation Board. She is currently serving as Secretary and as Chair of the Investment Committee. During her first year of service to the board, she also served on the Finance/Audit Committee.

Judy Ethell - Town and Country, Missouri

Judy EthellJudy is a graduate of EIU where she received her B.S. in Business Accounting with honors. She is an Operating Consultant for Thompson Street Capital Partners, a firm which manages over $445 million of private equity, investing in middle market companies. Previously, Judy served as the CFO/CAO of BearingPoint, Inc., a $3.5 billion services organization headquartered in McLean, Virginia, with activities in over 60 countries where she was responsible for the global finance functions (900 people) including; tax, treasury, international controller, corporate controller, shared services, finance transformation, SOX, SEC and financial reporting and analysis, business financial reporting, government contractor reporting, analyst and investor presentations, and rating agency contacts. During her tenure at BearingPoint, she restructured the entire global finance and accounting group and developed a long-term plan to significantly reduce costs via centralization of functions; revamped the financial closing process; was the steering committee chair for ERP systems implementation; managed tax authority negotiations; monitored SOX reporting and compliance process; met and discussed with SEC personnel the company’s late filer status and had frequent interaction with Board of Directors and Audit Committee.

 Judy started her career at PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP where she served as Tax Partner in Charge for the St. Louis office and managed global tax relationships for several Fortune 500 companies (consumer products, services, and financial services) including SEC/PCAOB/FAS 109 requirements, audit committee pre-approval process, and advised on financial statement reporting and disclosure. She also managed international tax and treasury restructurings focused on reducing effective tax rate and cash taxes. Judy has actively supported EIU as a member on the President’s Capital Campaign Steering Committee and Treasurer of the Accountancy Advisory Board. She serves on the Board of the Alpha Phi Foundation and engages in numerous other volunteer activities. She is serving her sixth year on the Foundation Board of Directors. She formerly served as President, Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary. She will finish out her final year on the Oversight & Outreach Committee. In her service to the Foundation Board, Judy has also served on the Finance/Audit and Investment Committees. Judy has been awarded a Bronze, Silver and Gold Medal by the United States Dressage Federation for her equestrian accomplishments.

Dennis Grannan - Chicago, Illinois

Dennis GrannanDennis received a BSB degree from EIU with a double major in accounting and philosophy. His continued involvement with the University includes membership on the EIU Alumni Board and serving as secretary on the Lambda Chi Alpha Alumni Board. In 2016, he received the Lambda Chi Alpha Order of Merit award for his ongoing support of the chapter. After college, he worked as an accountant for Aon Insurance Company in the Reinsurance and Financial Statements Department.

In 1989, he left Aon Insurance to pursue a career as a trader on the Chicago Board of Trade. Dennis received his brokerage license and proceeded to trade on his own account. He sold his seat in 1993 in order to manage and operate two family businesses in Chicago, Villari Florist, and J&P Delivery until they were sold in 2000 and 2009. Dennis is a commercial investor and owns and manages both commercial and private real estate properties. Dennis is serving his first year on the Board of Directors and will serve on the Finance/Audit and Real Estate Committees.

William Hill - Charleston, Illinois

Bill HillBill began his education with a B.A. in Education from Kentucky Wesleyan College. He went on to earn his M.S. in School Administration from Indiana State University and his Ph.D. in Education from Southern Illinois University.   His professional career in School administration spans over 40 years. In his capacity, Bill served 27 years as a School District Superintendent, 18 of which were with the Charleston School District. He dedicated 31 years to school administration within the public schools of Illinois, 13 years as Adjunct Professor at Eastern and 4 years as a State of Illinois Regional Vocational Director. 

Bill was twice appointed to the Illinois State Board of Education by Governor Edgar. He served six years on the State Board of Education. He was a member of the Illinois Association of School Administrators Board of Directors and served as board president. Additional professional memberships include the Retired Teachers Association of Illinois and the State Universities Annuitants Association.  He served as a President on the Charleston Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.  He also received an appointment with CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) for children, was a member of the Wesley Foundation Board for five years and for three years served as Board of Director for the Lake Land Community College Foundation. Bill currently serves on the Sarah Busch Lincoln Foundation Board, as a director of Distance Learning Grant for Illinois Telephone Association and the Regional Board of School Trustees which serves seven counties. Bill is serving his second year on the Foundation Board of Directors. He served three years as a Volunteer and will continue to serve on the Oversight & Outreach and Finance/Audit Committees.

 Rick Ingram -Chicago, Illinois

Rick IngramRick graduated with honors from Eastern in 1978 with BA in Political Science. He went on to receive his Juris Doctorate from the Univeristy of Tennessee in 1981. Rick is General Counsel and Cheif Legal Officer for Chicago Parking Meters, LLC and AMI Group, LLC in Chicago. He formerly was a partner at Shefsky & Froelich Ltd. He has experience in a broad range of real estate, corporate and infrastructure matters, including acquisition and disposition of large commercial properties, negotiation of governmental incentives, and facilitation of multi-level public/private initiatives and partnerships. In addition, Rick has extensive experience counseling clients on issues relating to the management of large commercial properties. He also has significant experience working with diverse community groups and stakeholders.

His numerous charitable, public service and community activities have included President of the Lakeview Action Coalition, Member of the Coles County Board, Member of the Coles County Regional Planning Commission, Member of the Hawthorne Academy Local School Council and mentor with the Gay and Lesbian Bar Association of Chicago. Rick also was named a Leading Lawyer, which consists of the top 5% of Illinois Lawyers, as selected by his peers. Rick has given numerous seminars and presentations on office leasing and other real estate-related topics. He has extensive experience speaking before community groups. This is Rick's first year as a member of the Foundation Board of Directors. He will also serve on the Investment and Scholarship & Grants Committees. His service to the Foundation began three years ago as a Volunteer on the Real Estate Committee.

 Al Longtin - New Lenox, Illinois

Al LongtinAl began his education with a BSB in Finance from EIU in 86' where he graduated with honors excelling in Business and Finance following his four years of service in the United States Navy. During his service, he received Letters of Commendation for his accuracy in accounting for a $20 million budget for repair parts.Upon his graduation from EIU, he started his career at the Chicago Board of Trade as a bond trader. In 1987, Al joined a renowned estate-planning firm where he earned the position as being one of the firm's top representatives. Al is currently the Founder/CEO of Longtin Family Companies, LLC which he founded in 1992. His company specializes in assisting Ultra High Net Worth individuals, business owners and entrepreneurs to address long-term wealth preservation plans that utilize a broad range of financial products and services. His company is recognized nationally as experts regarding; family limited partnerships, family foundations, and complicated estate trust designs. Al has frequently been asked to participate as a member of the Board of Directors for leading privately held business.

One of Al's main passions in life is serving on Boards for 501c3 organizations alongside with other charitable giving organizations; some include: SowHope (empowering women in 3rd world countries) and PB42 (encouraging couples to be proactive in early detection of breast and prostate cancer signs.) He has also served as past president of the Bishop McNamara School Alumni Board. Al served as Fall 2011 Executive in Residence at Eastern. Al also serves on the Athletic Director's Advisory Group.  Al is serving his second year on the Foundation Board of Directors. He will continue his service as a member of the Investment and Real Estate Committees.

Cindra Stiff - Philpot, Kentucky

Cindra StiffCindra received a BS in Business with an accounting emphasis from EIU in 1979. She went on to earn her MBA from Murray State University in 1988. She currently holds the position of vice president of finance at Kentucky Wesleyan College, Owensboro, KY and serves as an adjunct instructor in the Introduction to Business & Women Leadership courses.  Cindra began her career as an accountant for EIU and then went on to hold the position of controller at the Presbyterian College, Clinton, SC.

Cindra’ s professional appointments include serving as past chair of the Small College Committee of Southern Association of Colleges and University Business Officers (SACUBO). Additional appointments include chair of the Board and Finance Committee for Hospice of Western Kentucky and the Daviess County Kentucky Library Board and Bowlware Home Center Board. This is Cindra’s second year serving on the Foundation Board of Directors. She will serve as Chair of the Real Estate Committee. and will continue her service on the Investment Committee.

Jeremy Yost - Charleston, Illinois

Jeremy YostJeremy earned his Bachelor of Science in Management from the University of Phoenix. He attended graduate school at EIU while studying for his Master of Science in Technology focusing on training and development.  He currently serves as the vice president for Yost Management Company, LLC which specializes in real estate development and property management.  In addition, he is president of Yost Enterprises, LLC, serves as president of Indian Point Affordable Housing, NFP, and president of the Country Lane Affordable Housing, NFP, and president of Highland Place Affordable Housing, NFP.

Jeremy’s professional memberships include serving on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Housing Council, Coles Together Board of Directors, and Illinois Affordable Housing, NFP. He is a current member of the EIU Panther Club Executive Board and is chair of fundraising for EIU Athletics. He was a past Charleston Area Chamber of Commerce board of director, and past finance officer for the American Legion Post #93.  Jeremy is a master mason at Masonic Lodge #35. In 2007 and 2008 he was the Navy Region Midwest Sailor of the Year Runner-up while serving in the U.S. Navy.   Jeremy’s is serving his second year on the Foundation Board of Directors. He will also serve as Chair of the Scholarships & Grants Committee and will continue his service on the Investment Committee. Additionally, Jeremy has also served on the Finance/Audit and Scholarships & Grants Committees.

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Contact Information

EIU Foundation
Office Neal Welcome Center

860 West Lincoln Avenue
Charleston, IL 61920
(866) 581-3313
(217) 581-3313

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