Endowed funds are established through donor contributions both large and small.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES


Tom Costello

CHAIR
Tom Costello is the Assistant Managing Director of the Champaign Urbana Mass Transit District, a position he has held since 1974. Tom received a BA in Communication, History & Government from John Carroll University, MA in Communication from Miami of Ohio and his ABD in Organizational Communication from the University of Illinois. Tom has been a communication instructor at Illinois for over 40 years. He has served on countless boards, coalitions and committees, but is particularly sought after when an entertaining emcee is needed.

Tom Brown

VICE-CHAIR
A native of Urbana, Tom is an area Vice President of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. Formerly Tom was a partner in Brown Hobbs & McMurray Insurance Agency. Tom is also currently a Certified General Real Estate Appraiser (Brown & Brown Real Estate Appraisals, L.L.C.). After graduation from Furman University, Tom returned to the area and the family business in 1974 and has been a part of both the insurance and real estate appraisal business since. Tom is an active member of the local community, volunteering his time to a variety of civic organizations, including the Urbana Park District, Urbana Parks Foundation, Urbana School District, C-U Schools Foundation and Urbana Rotary.

Rebecca McBride

SECRETARY
Rebecca McBride is the senior associate director of Krannert Center and an assistant professor in the Department of Theatre at the U of I. Since earning her MBA and BS degrees from the U of I, she has been committed to applying her leadership, management, and strategic planning skills to the nonprofit arena. During her tenure at Krannert Center, Rebecca has been recognized for her leading role in developing groundbreaking public engagement and marketing initiatives, her sustainability advocacy, and her leadership in reimagining and developing the Center’s capacity to support new work. She is also the founder and president of 4 Osprey, an environmental nonprofit organization.

Bradley Uken

TREASURER
Bradley Uken serves as the Manager of the Champaign County Farm Bureau. The Farm Bureau is a membership based organization that provides information, education and advocacy for and on behalf of its members. Bradley has been with the Farm Bureau for 17 years serving in two other counties previously in the same position. He was born and raised on a grain and livestock farm in Champaign County and continues to help out on the family farm as time allows. Bradley graduated from Illinois State University with an Agri-Business degree.

Brooke Didier Starks

PAST CHAIR
Brooke A. Didier Starks is an experienced estate planning lawyer with Meyer Capel. She began her career with Meyer Capel while still a law student focusing her interests on estate work, later joining the firm as an attorney. Brooke has broad experience in estate planning, and especially enjoys working with farm families planning strategies that preserve the family business for future generations. She is a member of the American, Illinois and Champaign County Bar Associations, and the Eastern Illinois Estate Planning Council. She serves on boards and committees for several charitable organizations and has served on the faculty for the Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education.

Katie Bermingham


Katie Bermingham is a Certified Public Accountant and Manager of Assurance Services with CliftonLarsonAllen LLP where she has worked since 2009. She specializes in governmental and non-profit auditing. Katie is a member of the Illinois CPA Society and the American Institute of CPAs. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Accountancy from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Jeff Davis


Jeff Davis is a shareholder in Meyer Capel’s real estate, business and transactional practice groups. A practicing attorney since 1996, Jeff’s experience ranges from helping clients with all issues surrounding their start-up ventures to assisting clients with the purchase or sale of multi-million dollar businesses. He holds a BS in Finance and a JD from the University of Illinois. He serves as an Adjunct Professor in the College of Business at the University of Illinois and has previously served on the Champaign YMCA board as a board member and president. Jeff, a lifelong Illinois resident, moved to Champaign in 1989.

Wade Hampton


Wade Hampton brings 32 years of non-profit management experience to the board of trustees. Hampton, a regional Resource Director for the national nonprofit headquarters of the YMCA of the USA, provides consulting services in the areas of strategic planning, board development and assessment of operations to Ys in central and southern Indiana. Hampton previously held positions as CEO of the Champaign County and Kankakee Area YMCAs in addition to executive positions for YMCAs in San Jose, California, Lansing, Michigan, and Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Debra Hirschi


Debra Hirschi, a Senior Tax Manager with over 30 years of experience, enjoys assisting a wide variety of individual and business clients. Debbie graduated with honors from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy. She provides tax preparation and planning services for a variety of clients. Debbie also enjoys assisting clients through business consulting, estate planning, and trust administration. Some of Debbie's day-to-day tasks include cash budgeting, retirement planning, business succession planning and estate planning for individuals and businesses.

Bonnie Kemper


Bonnie Kemper is the owner of Varsity Striping & Construction Co. A Champaign native, she attended the University of Illinois. She has been an officer and member of the Associated General Contractors of Illinois and the American Traffic Safety Services Association. For 10 years, Bonnie made the former McKinley/Champaign County YMCA her nonprofit of choice, serving as board member, board president and volunteer when needed.

Joe Lamb


Joe Lamb is President & CEO of Open Road Paving & Asphalt. Born and raised in Champaign, Joe grew up in the paving industry. He graduated from TCU in Fort Worth, Texas and returned to Champaign to accept a role in the family business. He is past-president of the Illinois Asphalt Pavement Association and of the Associated General Contractors of America. Joe has served on the BankChampaign Board of Directors since 1998. He has also been active in community service, including serving as Vice President of the Champaign County Forest Preserve District Board of Commissioners.

Jeff Livesay


Jeff Livesay, CPA, CGMA is a Partner at Martin Hood Friese & Associates. He has nearly 20 years previous experience in the industry with national firms as well as a serving as Director of Finance at an International agriculture firm Jeff is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University and is active in the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce, and Champaign Rotary.

Joe Petry


Joe Petry is a Clinical Professor of Economics and Finance at the University of Illinois. Born and raised in Champaign, Joe received both BS and PhD in economics from Illinois. He spent nearly a decade living and working in Latin America and New York as economist, economic development advisor and executive officer for several major banks and corporations in the private sector. He returned to Champaign and accepted the position at Illinois in 2001. Joe has served as a Commissioner of the Champaign Park District where he served as President and Vice President numerous years. Joe also served as a Board Member of the Illinois Association on Park Districts, and served as its President in 2014. Joe also served on the Prairie Rivers Network’s board and co-founded the Boneyard Creek Community Day.

Edra J. Scofield

COMMUNICATIONS &
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
Edra Scofield brings over 25 years of marketing, communications and development experience to her Community Foundation role. A lifelong resident of Champaign County, she has actively supported a wide variety of non-profit organizations and agencies through her service on boards, committees and programs aimed at positive change. She previously served two terms on the Community Foundation Board. Scofield holds a bachelor’s degree in English and master’s degrees in Education and Business Administration from the University of Illinois.

Kristen Duesdieker


GRANTS & SCHOLARSHIPS MANAGER Kristen Duesdieker moved to Mahomet with her family in the summer of 2013 and joined the Foundation in early October. A Springfield native, she has eight years of experience in Grants & Scholarships management at the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin.

Joan M. Dixon

PRESIDENT & CEO
Joan Dixon has headed up the Community Foundation of East Central Illinois since 2002 when she was serving her second term on the Board of Trustees. Her fellow Trustees recognized her skills and talents and approached her to fill the open Executive Director position. During her tenure, Community Foundation assets have grown from $3.4 million to nearly $15 million, the service area has expanded from only Champaign County to its current nine-county area, and annual total grants, gifts and scholarships have grown from just under $200,000 per year to about one million dollars each year. Joan provides leadership, guidance and support to a variety of community coalitions looking to solve problems or make life better in their communities. She has held leadership positions in a variety of local, state and national community foundation-related organizations. Joan is a life-long resident of Champaign and holds graduate degrees in theater and business administration from the University of Illinois. Joan established the Foundation’s Center for Non-Profit Excellence through which she helps nonprofit organizations learn and use “best practices” in the areas of board training and development, strategic planning, fund development, stewardship, succession planning and other areas critical to success. She also serves on the Illinois Attorney General's Charitable Trust Advisory Council.

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Community Foundation of East Central Illinois 2013
307 W University Ave / Champaign, IL 61820 / 217.359.0125