The Board of Trustees of John Wood Community College is the official governing board of the College. Membership is composed of seven trustees elected at-large from the District and one student selected by the student body. Terms are six years in length, with the Student Trustee elected each year. Regular board meetings are normally held on the third Wednesday of every month at 6:00 PM at JWCC, 1301 South 48th Street, Quincy, Illinois. Board meetings are open to the public.
Diane Ary of Quincy was appointed in April 2015 to fill the vacant board seat left open due to the resignation of a previous board member. Mrs. Ary is the senior manager of information technology at ADM Alliance Nutrition in Quincy. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and management and a master’s degree in business administration from Quincy University. Mrs. Ary has been active in a variety of community organizations and has served on several boards, including past president and member of Quincy Service League, past member of St. Peter Grade School Council, a volunteer for various committees and activities for both Quincy Parochial and Public School organizations, and a mentor in the Quincy Public Schools Child and Family Mentor Program. Mrs. Ary has been a member of the JWCC Foundation Board and currently serves as its president.
Bob Rhea was elected to the JWCC Board in April, 2017. He has assisted clients with accounting, tax, and consulting services in west-central Illinois through the University of Illinois FBFM program since July 1, 1984. His education path includes degrees from John Wood Community College, Western Illinois University and the University of Illinois. He has achieved enrolled agent status from the Internal Revenue Service and is an instructor for the University of Illinois Tax School.
Bob is the national executive director for his professional organization, NAFBAS, and previously was that group’s national president. As of April 2017, he served as chairman of the board for Farmers State Bank of Camp Point. He is past chairman of the Panther Pride Foundation for Central Schools. He was selected to the Illinois Agricultural Leadership Program Class of 1990. He has been recognized as the John Wood Community College alumnus and teacher of the year, and has been inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame as a friend of basketball.
Andy Sprague of Kinderhook was appointed to the John Wood Community College Board in September, 2017 to fill the vacant board seat left open due to the resignation of a previous board member. Mr. Sprague is the owner of Sprague’s Kinderhook Lodge, LTD., Paxton Farms Inc., and partner in Sprague Farms Inc. He majored in Agriculture Economics at the University of Illinois at Urbana -Champaign. Andy was a Director of Development for the University of Illinois Foundation before returning to Pike County to start his lodging and special events business in 2001. Andy has a passion for his community and has enjoyed serving a variety of organizations. He is the immediate past chairman of the board for the Community Foundation Serving West Central Illinois and Northeast Missouri, served as chairman for the Illini Community Hospital Growing Our Care Campaign, is a past president of the Hull Lions Club and has held leadership positions for the Pike County Farm Bureau.
Andy was part of the early effort to establish the Western Community Center YMCA in Barry. He is a graduate of the Illinois Agricultural Leadership Foundation Program Class of 2012. He plays an active role with Quincy Young Life and Madison Park Christian Church Worship ministries.
Paula Hawley of Griggsville was elected to the JWCC Board in 2021. She is a native of Pike County and has lived there for over 50 years, having attended her first college classes at the John Wood Community College Old East School site in Pittsfield. Paula currently serves on the finance and audit committee. Paula is newly retired from K-12 education and worked for 33 years in the Pikeland School District as a teacher, assistant principal, assistant superintendent, and superintendent. She served as the district’s superintendent for 15 years. In her tenure as superintendent, she served on various education boards and committees including the West Central Region Vocational Board and the Illinois Association of School Administrators Board of Directors (IASA) where she served as President of the organization for the 2020-2021 school year. Paula holds a B.A. in Education from Stetson University, An M.A. in Educational Administration from the University of Illinois at Springfield, and a Ed. S. in Educational Leadership from Western Illinois University. She is an Illinois licensed K-12 teacher, principal, and administrator and a graduate of the National Institute for School Leadership (NISL) sponsored by the Tracy Family Foundation.
Don Hess began driving semi-trucks within California, Nevada, and Arizona in 1971. Ultimately, he branched out to cross-country driving until 1987, when he returned to school, and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Communications, with a minor in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Nebraska. He was recruited to JWCC in 1994 from the Center for Transportation and Safety Education in Oklahoma, to create a truck driver training program for the college. The program quickly became successful, and for many years was cited nationally as a model for truck driver training programs. Don has served as president of the National Association of Publicly Funded Truck Driving Schools, served on the Education Committee of the Truckload Carriers Association; Evaluation Team Leader, Board Vice-Chair, and currently Commissioner for the Professional Truck Driver Institute, as well as board member of Women in Trucking. He is the president of DLH Associates, and provides expert testimony throughout the United States in crashes and collisions involving commercial trucks. The firm’s specialties also include review, consultation, design, and implementation of commercial driving programs nationwide.
Dr. Randy Greenwell of Quincy was elected to the Board in 2019. Dr. Greenwell retired from Spoon River College after serving as Vice President for Instruction and Student Services for six years. Prior to that he was at John Wood Community College for 23 years where he served in various positions including a tenured faculty member and Chair of Business Programs as well as both Dean of Career and Technical Programs and Dean of Transfer Programs for twelve years. Dr. Greenwell holds a Ph.D. In Workforce Education from SIU Carbondale, a master’s degree from Western Illinois University, a bachelor’s degree from Quincy College and an associate’s degree from John Wood Community College. Dr. Greenwell has served on several advisory boards and State Wide Illinois Community College panels.
Larry Fischer of Quincy was elected to the Board in 2011. Fischer retired from John Wood Community College after serving as vice president for instruction for seven years and director of agricultural programs for nearly 26 years. He holds a masters degree from the University of Illinois – Champaign/Urbana and a bachelors degree from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale. Fischer serves on the Community Foundation of the Quincy Area board and is president of the Chaddock School Board. He is a former president and past member of the Illinois 4H Foundation Board of Directors, University of Illinois College of Agriculture/ACES Alumni Association, Southern Illinois University College of Agriculture Alumni Association and Greater Pike Industrial Development Corporation Board.
Noah Gay is a 2020 Pittsfield High School graduate. Noah is a member of the Student Government Association at John Wood and was elected as an officer for the 2021-2022 school year. He is active in Phi Theta Kappa and works part-time at Farmers State Bank. Following his graduation from John Wood, he is planning on transferring to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to study Ag Economics with a focus in Financial Planning.
James Rapp is a partner in the firm Schmeideskamp Robertson Neu & Mitchell LLP, and has represented since shortly after it was established in 1974. He a member of Bar in Illinois, Missouri, and the District of Columbia, and admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court and various federal courts. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois, Champaign, Illinois, and the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, Missouri. He is the author of various education law related publications, among them Education Law, a seven-volume comprehensive publication of LexisNexis, and Education Law, part of the LexisNexis Civil Rights & Strategy Series, and School Crime and Violence: Victims’ Rights, published by the National School Safety Center. He represented the National School Safety Center as a friend of the court before the United States Supreme Court. The Supreme Court of Illinois named him as a charter member and subsequent chair of its Minimum Continuing Legal Education Board. He has been active in professional, civic, and philanthropic organizations, among them John Wood Community Foundation.
We appreciate your interest in our College and your willingness to learn about the many opportunities that exist at JWCC. As President of this comprehensive community college, I want you to know a couple of things. First, your success as a student is our number one priority and the true reason we exist. Second, we’re a small enough college to give you the individual attention you need and deserve, yet we are large enough to offer you a wide variety of programs, courses, and services to inspire and challenge you.
Whether you are interested in taking one class or completing a degree or certificate, you’ll find competent staff, a well-prepared faculty, outstanding facilities, and an environment that encourages you to reach your full potential. We are here for you and will do everything in our power to ensure that you have a positive and successful experience.
I hope to see you on campus soon!
Michael Elbe, President
John Wood Community College