Board Members and Officers Bio

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Thyra Russell Photo

Thyra Russell ~ President

Retired Associate Dean, Morris Library after 31 years of service. Active member of the SIUC Women’s Club, Antiques & Collectibles Interest Group and many activities of the Grace United Methodist Church. Thyra and her husband Herb enjoy trips to Iowa City to see their daughter and her family.

Patricia Eckert Photo

Patricia Eckert ~ Vice President

Worked at SIUC for Continuing Education, as an instructor in Health Care Management for the College of Applied Sciences and Arts and directed a national demonstration project for college alcohol programs for the Student Health Center. During her time at the Student Health Center she was part of the original staff hired to develop the Wellness Center. She was also active in the AP Council at SIUC. Pat also did consultant work in substance abuse prevention. She and her husband, Jerry Molumby, reside in Carbondale and have a variety of interests, including classic cars. On summer days some may see them driving their 1955 Ford Thunderbird.

Mike Murray Photo

Mike Murray ~ Treasurer

Mike has been associated with SIUC for 35 years. Besides earning both his masters and doctorate from the University, he has served as director of corporate relations for the SIU Foundation and as associate director of Career Services. Mike and his wife of over 47 years, Susan, live in Makanda township. Together they have three children and five grandchildren. Interests, besides SUAA, include being a trustee on the Bates Foundation board, Brehm School Foundation board member, Hope Light Project board member, and 24 /7 “grandpa-on-call” lifetime member.

Marcia Ann Anderson Photo

Marcia Ann Anderson ~ Secretary

Retired after 39 years at SIUC as Professor in the Department of Workforce Education and Development. Served on Faculty Senate and Graduate Council while employed. Native of Nebraska. Daughter and family reside in High Point, North Carolina. Does volunteer work with social services organization in Marion and continues involvement with professional associations in my field.

Douglas Bedient Photo

Douglas Bedient ~ Immediate Past President

Joined the SIUC Learning Resources Service faculty in 1971 and was cross appointed in the College of Education. Transferred to the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the early 1990’s. Taught in the C&I instructional development specialty area as well as supervising field placements of teacher education students. Likes to read, travel, grow onions and garlic, and be engaged in educational, service and church projects. He and his wife Barb have two children and 10 grandchildren who reside in Indiana and Kentucky.

Board Members

Jay Brooks Photo

Jay Brooks ~ Civil Service Representative

Served as the Superintendent of Building Services and was employed at the Physical Plant for over 32 years. He was a member of the Civil Service Council for over 15 years and president of the group for five years. Jay also served as the SIUC representative on the Employee Advisory Committee to the Merit Board for 9 years and the State Universities Retirement System Member’s Advisory Committee for 6 years. In addition he was a member of two Chancellor Search Committees. In retirement, Jay and Mary Jane enjoy traveling. They have two sons that they are extremely proud of: Aaron who is 33 and Jonathon who is 30. Both sons as well as Mary Jane are SIU alum. Jay enjoys volunteering, including Meals on Wheels and working with First Presbyterian Church in Carbondale. He also enjoys writing and has a blog entitled the Happy Traveler.

Carla Coppi Photo

Carla Coppi  

Carla Coppi retired from Southern Illinois University in December 2015, ending her thirty-year career with the Center for International Education.

A native of southern Illinois, Carla is a graduate of SIU's School of Music, majoring in vocal performance with a specialization in opera and musical theater. 

Mike Hanes Photo

Mike Hanes 

Mike retired from SIUC in 2005 after thirty-eight years as a member of the music faculty.  While at SIUC, he was director of the Marching Salukis for over 30 years and served as musical director/conductor and co-producer of the McLeod Summer Playhouse. In retirement he is the conductor of the John A. Logan College Community Band and serves as guest conductor, clinician and adjudicator, leading junior high and high school festival and honors bands throughout the Midwest.

Nancy Hartman Photo

Nancy Hartman ~ Newsletter and Social Media

Nancy retired from SIUC in 2002 after serving 36 years on the Civil Service staff. While at SIUC, she worked in the Payroll Office, Travel Service, Service Enterprises and Plant and Service Operations. She also earned her bachelor and master degrees from SIUC.  Since retiring, she has served on the Annuitants Association Board as Vice President, Secretary and as the Newsletter Editor. Her interests include houseboating on Crab Orchard Lake, Saluki Sports, knitting, photography and traveling. 

Lynn Smith Photo

Lynn Smith 

Served as a faculty member and chair of Curriculum and Instruction. Her instructional and research specialties were in reading, elementary/middle level education, and mentoring. She is active in Lutheran higher education activities; sits on the Alumni Association Board for Valparaiso University; and on the Cornerstone Foundation Board, which is associated with Lutheran Social Services of Illinois. She has two children and one grandchild; Charles, his wife and daughter reside in Indianapolis, and Clare, who resides in Carbondale.

Trish Welch Photo

Carolyn Wagner Snyder ~ Emeritus Faculty Organization

Carolyn Wagner Snyder (Emeritus Faculty Organization Chair), Professor Emerita of Library Affairs and former Dean of Library Affairs, continued her involvement in University and community activities after her retirement. University-related activities include the planning and fundraising for the recently established Jeanne Hurley Simon Memorial Scholarship Endowment in the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, and chairing the Development and Fundraising Committee of the Friends of McLeod Summer Playhouse Board. Her community activities have included Carbondale Community Arts President, Varsity Center for the Arts Board member, American Association of University Women Carbondale Branch President, and League of Women Voters of Jackson County Vice President for Programs. She also served as a member of the Carbondale Women’s Center Board and is a member of the Carbondale Branch of the NAACP. She is a season ticket holder for SIUC basketball and football and enjoys participation in fundraising for programs that enrich the Carbondale community.

Mary Taylor Photo

Mary Taylor - Faculty Senate Representative

Mary Taylor, Faculty Senate Appointee, has been a  professor in the department of Library Affairs for over twenty years. She is the liaison librarian to natural sciences departments on campus.

Valerie Brooks Wallin Photo

Valerie Brooks Wallin ~ A/P Staff Council Representative

Valerie is the Academic Advisor in the School of Art and Design and has 22 years of service at SIU. She is a Saluki through and through, having earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Southern. She is a Saluki basketball and Cardinal baseball fan, an avid knitter, and lives in Cobden with her husband, Jeff, who is a self-employed blacksmith. They have three feline friends, Francis, Roswell, and Landau, and one pooch, Festus.

Trish Welch Photo

Trish Welch 

Emeritus Professor/Department Chairperson for Animal Science, Food and Nutrition. Enjoys learning history through travel, golf and historic resorts, musical theater and sporting events at SIU. Likes to attend any activities in which grandchildren or nieces and nephews actively participate.