Board of Trustees
Trina Wright-Dixon, Chair
Trina-Wright Dixon currently is an experienced Teaching Assistant Professor with the University of Illinois and has a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry. She previously was a lecturer with UCLA and taught graduate courses in Afro-American Studies and undergraduate courses in Communication, Gender, Afro-American Studies and The Anderson School of Management. She is skilled in Nonprofit Organizations, Event Planning, Training Needs Analysis, Organizational Development, and Diversity Training. She is a strong education professional with a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) focused in Organizational Communication, Intercultural & Interpersonal Communication from Howard University.
Austin Hill, Vice Chair
Austin J. Hill joined Thomas, Mamer, & Haughey, LLP in 2013 as a member of the firm’s transactional team. His practice is primarily focused upon estate planning and probate, as well as real estate, contract, and corporate matters. He has drafted Wills and Trusts for multi-million dollar clients, utilizing tax planning techniques to minimize anticipated estate taxes. Mr. Hill received his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign in 2008, double-majoring in Philosophy and Political Science. He graduated from The John Marshall Law School in 2013, and was admitted to the Illinois Bar that year. Since being admitted to the bar in 2013, Mr. Hill has been a member of the Illinois State and Champaign County Bar Associations. He is also a member of the Eastern Illinois Estate Planning Council, where he currently serves as Treasurer. He joined the Champaign Rotary Club in 2015, and is Thomas, Mamer, & Haughey’s “United Way Employee Campaign Coordinator,” orchestrating a firm-wide gift to the United Way on an annual basis. Additionally, he has provided Pro Bono service through the Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation and for clients of limited means. Mr. Hill is a lifelong resident of the area. His father, Dr. Martin E. Hill, D.D.S., operated a dental practice in Champaign for over 30 years, which is now owned and operated by Mr. Hill’s sister, Dr. Katherine C. Hill, D.D.S.
Debra Hirschi, Secretary
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.
Joe Lamb, Past Chair
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.
Denise Knipp Bates joined Thomas Mamer LLP in 2007 and became a partner in 2014. She concentrates her practice in the areas of real estate, wills, trusts, probate, guardianships, general business law, and elder law. Denise graduated as a James Scholar from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2000, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Speech Communication with a minor in Spanish. Denise earned her Juris Doctor from Loyola University Chicago School of Law in 2003, with a concentration in trial advocacy. In 2003, Denise was admitted to the Illinois Bar and is licensed to practice law in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois. She is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association and Champaign County Bar Association. She served as President of the East Central Illinois Women Attorneys Association for two years and won its 2006 Service Award. Denise is also a former member of the Champaign County Association of Realtors and the Executive Club of Champaign County. In 2008, she was a winner of the Central Illinois Business Magazine’s “40 Under 40.” She is a former President of the Junior League of Champaign-Urbana and a former President of the Eastern Illinois Estate Planning Council. She was named an Emerging Lawyer in the years 2015, 2016, and 2017 and a Leading Lawyer in the years 2018 and 2019 by Leading Lawyers Magazine. In 2017, she was named one of the Top Real Estate Lawyers by Chicago Lawyer Magazine. In 2018 and 2019, she was named one of the Top Real Estate Lawyers and Women Lawyers in Illinois by Leading Lawyers Magazine. In 2019, Denise was named a Super Lawyer by Lawyer Monthly Magazine. Denise and her husband, Justin, live in Champaign with their children, Hayden and Morgan.
Jon Coffman is a CFO in the outsourcing division for CliftonLarsonAllen. He is a native of Mansfield, Illinois, and attended North Central College in Naperville before passing the CPA exam. Jon has worked professionally in the Champaign-Urbana community for more than 20 years. He has an excitement for helping organizations succeed that has led him into several entrepreneurial side-projects over the years alongside his accounting practice. Jon has served many nonprofit organizations during his career as either a board member or consultant and currently serves on the finance committee at Grace Church of Mahomet. He resides in White Heath with his wife, Brook, and twin sons, Austin and Camden.
Michelle Gonzales works in Public Engagement for the Chancellor’s Office at the University of Illinois. Prior to this position, she was a third-grade teacher in Champaign’s Unit 4 School District for twelve years, then served as the Chief of Staff for State Senator Scott Bennett. Throughout her career and involvement with various volunteer groups, she has learned a great deal about what makes Champaign-Urbana the resource-rich community that it is. She admires the services we can provide to our most vulnerable neighbors and the strong leaders of the numerous non-profit organizations in our area. Michelle is the mother to her 16-year-old son, Sam, and an energetic 3-year-old miniature dachshund, Leo. She is thrilled to join the board for CFECI and looks forward to continuing her trajectory of giving back to this wonderful place she calls home.
Wynne Korr retired in 2017 after serving 15 years as Dean of the School of Social Work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a long career as a social work educator and researcher. At Illinois she supported initiatives that promoted social innovation and entrepreneurship and community engagement. She is on the board of the Community Foundation of East Central Illinois and serves as the volunteer director of its Community Solutions Incubator. She also serves on the Community Impact Committee of United Way.
Beth Mathews grew up in Philo, Illinois, graduating from Unity High School. She lived in the Effingham area for 24 years but has since moved back to east central Illinois. She is a nurse practitioner and has worked for Carle, Kirby Medical Center and Gibson Area Hospital. She is married to Jay Mathews who works as a grain accountant and is COO at Midwest Grain in Bloomington, Illinois. They have one daughter, Kathryn, who works at the University of Illinois in AITS (Information Technology). In her spare time, Beth loves to read and knit. She also loves playing golf in the summer.
Terra Mullins was raised in Champaign County on a farm and has been involved in the community through outreach efforts, business strategy and development. Her key areas of focus consist of healthcare, event planning, management, marketing, team engagement and relationship building. Early in her career, Terra served as a Respiratory Care Practitioner with a focus on Pulmonary Function and lung health, with a short time as Faculty at Parkland College for the Pulmonary Function course of the Respiratory Care program. In 2008 she, alongside her husband, started Champaign Urbana’s first multi-restaurant marketing and delivery service before selling it in 2011. She has a Bachelor of Science in Health Care Administration and a Master of Business Administration Degree. Currently, Terra manages Community Outreach and earned the 2019 Annual Way to Be Leader at Health Alliance/Carle Health. She serves on the Age-Friendly Steering Committee supported by CHAD at the U of I, participated in the inaugural class of the Aspirating Philanthropist Giving Circle hosted by CFECI and serves on the Grants Committee for CFECI. Terra, her husband Eddie and daughter Kelsee reside in Urbana. She loves nature, learning new things, and appreciates that “It takes a village to create the type of change to make things better.”
Mr. Royse works with communities and anchor institutions on community and economic development strategies to bring about a more sustainable future. In his role he works to initiate projects in renewable energy, transportation and land use, and community health. Mr. Royse also focuses on encouraging entrepreneurial initiative in the communities he serves with an eye for bridging age, culture, and economic gaps. Mr. Royse was President of One Main Development, LLC. until January of 2013 In his role, Mr. Royse worked closely with city leaders and partners to ensure the success of each project and the continued growth of One Main Development. Mr. Royse’s experience is as a business generalist, and he has served professionally as a business strategist both organizationally and financially. He has been extensively involved with a sixty million-dollar residential property portfolio owned by his family. As CEO of Royse Wagner (a small national branding firm), Mr. Royse consulted on teams leading high growth activities within a variety of industries. His crowning achievement was the development of the environmental communications platform for the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, 2002. Mike is tireless in his service to the local business and academic community. He frequently takes time to meet with students and young professionals who are just beginning to define their careers or refine their business vision. Mike currently serves as President of the Center for Community Adaptation which aims to help communities come together around strategies and initiatives that build health, wealth, and sustainability.
Joe A. Stovall is the youngest of four children of the late Claudyne Stovall and Robert L. Stovall. He was born on the south side of Chicago and moved to Champaign when he was 3 years old. He attended Booker T. Washington Elementary School, Edison Jr. High School and graduated from Central H.S. in 1982. Joe was involved in various activities, was an honor roll student and lettered his junior and senior year in basketball. He and his brother Robert Jr. were two of the original members of the Boys Club in Champaign. Joe attended Quincy College and played on their varsity basketball team. He majored in Mathematics while attending Quincy. He transferred to Illinois State University, to graduate with a degree in Chemistry. Joe worked for Dow Chemical before becoming an employee with State Farm Insurance. He has held several positions with State Farm and was the first African-American State Farm agent in Champaign in 1997. Joe is heavily involved in the community, supporting many nonprofits. He was the President of the Urban Business Network and Board President of Don Moyers’ Boys & Girls Club and served as a board member for 13 years. He is a sponsor, coach and volunteer for 1st String, Inc. which is the Little League program in Douglass Park and basketball program at Douglass Center and the Don Moyer Boys and Girls Club. He has been an instructor for the Junior Achievement program. He has mentored through the “Talks Mentoring” program run by Reverend Harold Davis. He currently assists Devon Turner with the “Boyz2Men” mentoring program. Joe is married to the wonderful “Song Bird” Mamie Stovall. Together they have 4 adult sons (Antonio, Dontiel, Jamir and Jamal) and six Grandsons.
Kandace Turner is the Associate Director for Public Engagement for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She works to advance the University’s public engagement mission by assisting with strategic planning and the development and execution of strategic initiatives and building and managing relationships across a wide range of constituents, including the university, community, corporate, and government partners. These include major campus-wide public engagement initiatives, interinstitutional collaborations, and statewide networks. Ms. Turner holds an M.S. in Information Management from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a B.S. in Organizational Leadership from Millikin University. Kandace also serves on the Promise Healthcare Board of Directors and is a member of Leadership Illinois’ Class of 2020.
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.
Angie Hatfield Marker, Vice President of Development
Angie Hatfield Marker was hired as the Development Director for the Community Foundation of East Central Illinois in March of 2018. She is responsible for advancing the mission of CFECI by developing donor relationships and increasing fundraising opportunities. Born in Danville and raised in Champaign, Angie is a graduate of Centennial High School and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communication in 2003. She also won four Varsity I Letters while working as a student equipment-manager for the University of Illinois football team from 1999-2002. Angie has more than 15 years of sales, marketing and development experience. Prior to joining CFECI, Angie worked as Director of Development and Communications for Crisis Nursery in Urbana. She also worked for O’Brien Auto Park of Urbana for 13 years as Director of Business Development and Toyota Sales Manager. She has been actively volunteering in her community for more than two decades, serving on boards for the Urbana Business Association and the Crisis Nursery. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals of East Central Illinois. Angie and her husband, Dan, live in Champaign with their sons, Johnny and Dean.
Kristen Duesdieker, Grants & Scholarships Manager
Kristen Duesdieker moved to Mahomet with her family and joined the Foundation in October 2013. A Springfield native, she had eight years of experience in Grants & Scholarships management at the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin before joining us.