Building on a strong team of diverse experts in their fields, Governor JB Pritzker announced the following appointments in his administration:


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Christine Benson will continue to serve on the Illinois State Board of Education.* For about six years, Benson served as the Superintendent of Streator Elementary School District #44. Previously, she was the Superintendent of the Ottawa Elementary School District #141 and the Mendota TWP High School District #280. Additionally, Benson spent twenty years as a teacher in areas of general, choral and instrumental music. Benson is active in her community where she serves as the Treasurer and past President of the Rotary Club. She received her Bachelor of Music Education, Master of Science in Education Administration and her Certificate of Advance Study in Education Administration from Illinois State University. She also received her Doctor of Education from Northern Illinois University.

Roger Eddy will serve on the Illinois State Board of Education.* Currently, Eddy is the Interim President of Lincoln Trail College. Prior to his current role, he was the Executive Director of the Illinois Association of School Boards and the Superintendent of Schools at Hutsonville CUSD #1. For about ten years, Eddy was the elected State Representative of the 109th district. He received his Bachelor of Science in Education from Northern Illinois University and his Master of Science and Specialist in Education from Eastern Illinois University.

Jaime Guzman will serve on the Illinois State Board of Education.* Since 2020, Guzman has worked at Nike where he leads the Social and Community Impact team, managing philanthropic investments along with community partnerships in Chicago. He is a current public school parent and former school board member and bilingual teacher. Previously, he was the Deputy Director of My Brother’s Keeper Alliance and Chicago Youth Opportunity Programs at the Barack Obama Foundation. He also worked in various capacities at the Chicago Public Schools, City Colleges of Chicago, the Taproot Foundation, and the Big Shoulders Fund. He received his Bachelor of Arts from Dartmouth College and his Master of Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.


Ramon Cepeda will continue to serve on the University of Illinois Board of Trustees.* Cepeda is the Senior Managing Director and Senior Vice President of Northern Trust’s Professional Services and Commercial Real Estate Teams where he manages a team with revenue of $40 million and $1.5 billion in outstanding loans. Previously, he was a Vice President at LaSalle Bank serving as a banker in the commercial real estate group. Cepeda is a 2011 Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow and on the 2010 List of Most Influential Hispanics in the U.S. awarded by Hispanic Business Magazine. He also serves on the Board of Trustees of the National Museum of Mexican Art, the Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, and the Latino Leadership Council. He received his Bachelor of Arts from University of Illinois.

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Sarah Phalen will serve on the University of Illinois Board of Trustees.* Currently, Phalen is the President and CEO at INB, formerly known as Illinois National Bank. She was previously the Vice President of Cash Management at National City, and a Credit Officer at First National Bank,. In her civic life, she is the Board Treasurer for the Land of Lincoln Economic Development Council and a Board Member at the Vision of Hope Foundation. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Economics from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her Master of Business Administration from University of Illinois at Springfield.

Tamara Craig Schilling will serve on the University of Illinois Board of Trustees.* Schilling serves as the North America Knowledge Transfer Agronomy Lead at Bayer Crop Science where she manages US and Canada agronomy support, communications, and training. Schilling previously served as the Global Business Sustainability Lead, the Global Community Engagement Lead, the Global Research & Development Communications Lead, and the Public Affairs Strategy & Operations Lead at Monsanto. She is on the Board of Directors at various organizations such as the Illinois 4-H Foundation and the Illinois Agriculture Leadership Foundation. She received her Bachelor of Science from University of Illinois and a Certificate in Supply Chain from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


Alan Henry will serve on the Racing Board.* Henry has been a freelance writer for various publications and organizations since retiring in 2011. Previously, he was the Communications Director for the Office of the Illinois Comptroller, the Deputy Executive Editor of Pioneer Press Newspapers, and the Deputy Managing Editor of the Chicago Sun-Times. Henry has shared his expertise with lectures at Northwestern University, Boston University and Roosevelt University. Similarly, his collection of short fiction stories “Horse Tales” has been nationally recognized in multiple fiction contests. He received his Bachelor of Arts in History from University of Rochester and his Master of Arts in Journalism from Boston University.

John Stephan will serve on the Racing Board.* Stephan is a United States Army veteran and previously served as a Public Services Representative for the Illinois Secretary of State. He is a member of his local church, a horse racing enthusiast, and has spent more than 30 years as a high school and youth sports coach. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville.


Janice Glenn will serve on the Human Rights Commission.* Glenn is the Campus Administrator at Parkview Christian Church. Prior to her current role, she was the Director of the Illinois Department of Human Rights, responsible for administering the agency’s various operations, the $15.2 million budget, and its strategic goals. Glenn also worked in the Office of the Governor as the Director of Diversity and Recruitment and EEO/AA Officer and at Leadership Greater Chicago as the Director of Programs. Glenn received the Honorary Fellow Award at Leadership Greater Chicago. She is also the Vice Chair of the Auxiliary Board at Christ The King Jesuit College Preparatory High School and an Advisory Board Member at Future Leaders of Chicago. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Roosevelt University and her Associate Degree from Catherine College.

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