Dianne Ashby arrived at Illinois State in 1992 as a seasoned educator ready to lead. She held several administrative positions, ending her career as vice president of University Advancement with retirement in 2010.

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Having completed a doctorate in educational administration from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, Ashby was prepared for the challenge of serving as ISU’s coordinator of the Illinois Postsecondary HIV Prevention Education Project. Her first job was to lead the interdisciplinary program funded by the Centers for Disease Control.

While as faculty, she was asked to serve as principal of University High School and later selected as chair of the Department of Educational Administration and Foundations before taking on the duties of College of Education dean. Her accomplishments leading the college included establishing the Chicago Teacher Education Pipeline and reinventing the Center for the Study of Education Policy.

Ashby left the college to become interim vice president of University Advancement in 2005. She was named to the position in 2007 following a national search. The endowment surpassed the $80 million mark under her leadership. Initiatives completed include the opening of ISU’s first alumni center and creation of the Genevieve Green Gardens at Ewing Manor.

The work was a labor of love for Ashby, who enjoyed her years at Illinois State.

“ISU is a place of vibrant people who want to do what is best for students, Illinois, and for education. In Advancement, I loved getting to know alumni from all the University’s colleges.”

She and her husband, Jack Lockman, live in Arizona. Her days are full with volunteering, biking, pickleball, travel, and hiking. Her travels include international adventures, with hiking closer to home. She has crossed the Grand Canyon four times, most recently going from rim to rim in 11 hours.

“I’m playing as hard as I worked,” said Ashby, who would love to hear from former students and colleagues. She can be reached at deashby87@gmail.com.