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Meet your new CS Council members

Large bell surrounded by flowers and set in stone landscaping, with trees and academic buildings in the background

The Founders Bell on the Quad of Illinois State University.

Get to know the new Civil Service Council members with a quick Q&A.

Nancy Kerns

Nancy J. Kerns, Group 3
Department of Management & Quantitative Methods/Office Manager
Joined ISU in 2000

What are your favorite places on campus?
My favorite places on campus are the College of Business building and courtyard, where I have the privilege of working. I also love walking the sidewalks of the Quad, especially in the fall and to see the wildlife (not students) that live in this wonderful parklike area.

What drew you to run for the Civil Service Council?
I thought it was about time. I had spent 15 years working heavily with Local 3236: Clerical & Healthcare. With our new contract signed, I was looking for something new and different to get involved in. That is when I received the call, “Are you interested?” And I was. I really enjoy service. So, I am looking forward to this and getting to know a lot of new people on campus.

What do you hope to achieve during your time on the Civil Service Council?
First, I want to learn what the CS Council does and what it is involved in besides what I have experienced. Second, as a representative to Group 3, I would like to coordinate with the other representatives of Group 3 and reach out to the members of our region to hear what they have to say, and report back to them. In other words, make this a real exercise in shared governance.

I’m a big believer in active citizenship.

Favorite Redbird event or pastime?
My all-time favorite event is the Homecoming Parade. I love watching the Big Red Marching Machine come around the roundabout–it just keeps on marching as more and more and more fill the street. It is impressive! I love the community response as they line the street. I am a fine arts grad (dare I say it–from the university down the road, U of I), so I love concerts, art shows, dance, and in particular, plays–especially the Illinois Shakespeare Festival in the summers at Ewing Manor under the stars. It is extraordinary! And I will greatly miss it this summer. I love introducing my grandchildren to the magic of live theater.

Jamie Neville

Jamie Neville, Group 5
University Housing Services/Business Administrative Associate
Joined ISU in 2010

What are your favorite places on campus?
The University Archives out on Warehouse Road. They’ve got such an amazing stockpile of meaningful artifacts and University history. It’s a fantastic place to get perspective on the work that we do. And, I have a pretty good relationship with one of the archivists (my spouse, Julie Neville).

What drew you to run for the Civil Service Council?
I strongly support our University’s mission, as well as its commitment to shared governance. Not only is the Civil Service Council a great way to meet other talented professionals, but it is a great way to advocate for the needs of my peers across campus.

What do you hope to achieve during your time on the Civil Service Council?
Our University has weathered a lot of storms over the past decade by being focused on the success of the student and providing individualized attention. I think this is the way in which we’ll succeed at these new challenges that face us. I hope to be a part of the solution.

Favorite Redbird event or pastime?
I love sitting out in the quad on the first day of classes. Watching all the students experience what college life is like is invigorating and sensing the nervous energy all around reminds me of what it was like on my first day. That, and it is the only day you can be sure that EVERYONE IS ACTUALY ATTENDING ALL THEIR CLASSES.

Stuart Palmer

Stuart Palmer, Group 1
Honors Program/Program and Student Advisor
Joined ISU in 2009

What are your favorite places on campus?
I have three! The first two are the Quad along with Cook Hall. I began my undergraduate degree in the fall of 2005 as a music student. I spent a lot of time on the Quad and in and around Cook Hall and have many fond memories of both of these places. My third is Hancock Stadium. I love attending football games and also marched for two years with the Big Red Marching Machine and so ISU Football games mean a lot to me.

What drew you to run for the Civil Service Council?
I chose to run for the Civil Service Council because Illinois State University has given me so much, both as an employee and as a student/graduate and I wanted the opportunity to continue to serve the University through the shared governance of the Civil Service Council. I believe shared governance on campus is one of the things that makes Illinois State University so special. We all have a voice in the direction of the University and how we can best serve our students and each other, and I wanted the opportunity serve in such a capacity.

What do you hope to achieve during your time on the Civil Service Council?
I hope that our Council continues to represent our constituents well within the shared governance structure. Also, given the situation we find ourselves in currently, I hope that myself and other Council members can continue to be the voice for staff questions and concerns to the administration. I also hope that as a Council, we can continue to make staff more aware of who we are and what the Council does, and how they can be more involved. I cannot do any of this alone, but we have excellent staff members on the Council who really want to make ISU the best it can be.

Favorite Redbird event or pastime?
My favorite Redbird event has to again be ISU football games. The campus has a special feel on game days as everyone comes out to celebrate and cheer on the Birds and campus has a very vibrant energy to it. There’s nothing quite like it.

Sean Thornton

Sean Thornton, Group 2
University Marketing and Communications/Graphic Designer
Joined ISU in 2012

What are your favorite places on campus?
Ever since I was an undergrad, I’ve loved being on the Quad when the weather is pleasant. As a creative person, it’s a pleasure to see the artwork displayed in the CVA and at the University Galleries.

What drew you to run for the Civil Service Council?
I wanted to become more involved in the University as well as make a difference to the campus community more than my position might normally allow.

What do you hope to achieve during your time on the Civil Service Council?
To do my best in making a lasting, positive impact to the campus community and for the civil service staff.

Favorite Redbird event or pastime?
Every year the family and I look forward to the Gamma Phi Circus and the Children’s Holiday Party! They are both amazing events that the University puts on for the community, from which we have fond memories!

Emily Vigneri

Emily Vigneri, Group 4
Event Management, Dining, and Hospitality/Training & Development Coordinator
Joined ISU in 2008

What are your favorite places on campus?
It’s hard to pick a favorite, but the Bone Student Center is definitely at the top of my list!

What drew you to run for the Civil Service Council?
I was a member of A/P Council previously and really enjoyed the opportunity to participate in shared governance. Additionally, I was grateful to cultivate relationships with colleagues I might not have gotten the chance to work with otherwise.

What do you hope to achieve during your time on the Civil Service Council?
I look forward to building relationships with my peers on the Civil Service Council as well as participating in scholarship fundraising. I also hope to serve as a resource to fellow civil service staff members.

Favorite Redbird event or pastime?
I have a lot of favorite Redbird events, but I very much enjoy assisting with the “Fear the Bird” program, as well as participating in the “Cook with a Redbird Chef” events.

For more information on the Civil Service Council, or to contact council members, visit the CS Council website at cscouncil.illinoisstate.edu.