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Trustees and Staff

The agency’s Board of Trustees is appointed by the governor, with advice and consent from the Illinois Senate.

Currently, the trustees are:

James P. Bruner, Chair

James P. Bruner is president of United Contractors Midwest, one of the largest construction companies in the Midwest. He is chairman of the board at Illinois National Bank and serves on the board of the Illinois Asphalt Pavement Association. He is a past director of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation. Bruner earned his bachelor’s degree in business from Illinois College. He lives in Jacksonville, Illinois.

Jane Hay

Jane Hay is a broker with The Real Estate Group, Inc., which provides residential and commercial real estate services in Springfield and Sangamon County. Previously, she served as project manager for REAL ID in the Illinois Secretary of State’s ​office and was manager of scheduling for the Illinois State Treasurer. She is past president of the Chatham Area Chamber of Commerce and serves on the Ball Chatham Educational Foundation’s board of directors. Hay is a graduate of Taylorville High School and has a certificate from Patricia Stevens Business College. She lives in Chatham.

Gary L. Hammons

 Hammons was a gas engineer for Ameren Illinois in Decatur until his recent retirement. He serves on the Oak Ridge Cemetery Board of Managers and was a member of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Advisory Board. He received his Bachelor of Technology in Civil Engineering from Florida A&M University. Rev. Hammons is also a member of the historical committee for Springfield's Union Baptist Church.

Melinda Spitzer Johnston

Johnston held many positions at the Chicago History Museum from 1999 until 2006, when she became Harvard Law School Library's Curator of Digital and Visual Resources in 2006. From 2009-2010, she served as the Library’s Digital Projects Consultant. Johnston has extensive experience in selecting, cataloging, and interpreting artifacts.

Gail Shiel

Gail Shiel is an interior designer who has been designing commercial spaces for over 30 years. She is an adjunct professor at Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis, a fellow of the International Interior Design Association and a former member of the board of directors for the Institute of Business Designers. She chairs the board of directors for Damar Services, which assists Indiana children with developmental disabilities. Shiel received a bachelor’s degree in environmental design and interior design from Purdue University and is working on her master’s degree in arts administration and policy at the Art Institute of Chicago. She lives in Chicago.

Andy Volpert

Andy Volpert has taught AP American government, U.S. history and other classes at Springfield Southeast High School since 2003. He previously spent three years teaching at Morrisonville High School. Volpert received a bachelor’s degree in history education and a master’s degree in history from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, where he won the Stanley A. Zucker Essay Prize for his outstanding research. He lives in Springfield.

Victoria Willer

Victoria is the President of Reviresco Consulting, a strategic communications and consulting firm, which she founded in 2010.  Previously, she worked for McDonald's corporation as a Director in the Office of the President and COO for their global business.  In this role, she specialized  in issues management, stakeholder engagement and communications projects.  While part of the McDonald’s USA team, Victoria managed public affairs, speech writing and other communications needs directly for the Vice President of Communications and Customer Satisfaction.    Willer earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Iowa. She lives in Winnetka with her husband Kevin and 3 children, Jacqueline, Max and Elizabeth.