Staff Advisory Council

Staff Advisory Council Members

Clint D. harper

Emily ShaferClint D. Harper

SAC President
Service/Maintenance classes (EEO 7)

Clint began his career at the University with Facilities & Services (F&S) as a Building Service Worker (BSW) in 2012. Clint currently works for the Facilities Department at Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) as their Research Facility Attendant. In this position, Clint is responsible for setting up and coordinating special events and room rentals at ECE. Additionally, Clint works with the building’s research labs and professors to monitor safety compliance.

Clint is a certified Employee Protection Process (EPP) trainer, a Parkland graduate, and a former member of the University of Illinois Army R.O.T.C. “Illini Battalion.” When not at work, Clint enjoys coaching youth sports and assisting with Monticello Cub Scout (Pack 122) events. As a representative for EE07, Clint is looking forward to meeting and interacting with the service employees and serving on their behalf.

Penny Nigh

Penny Nigh

SAC Vice President
Executive/Administrative/Managerial classes (EEO 1&3)

Penny started at the university as Extra Help in 2005, working as the receptionist in the College of Applied Health Science’s (AHS) Dean’s Office. Penny was hired as a Secretary III in AHS a month later and is now an Administrative Aide who supports the Associate Dean for Administration; the Associate Dean for Research & Director for the Center on Health, Aging, and Disability; and the Director of the AHS Shared Business Service Center.

Penny came to the University after Penny and her husband sold their business, Midwest Smokehouse, Inc., of which Penny was the President and CEO. Prior to that, Penny was the Activity Director for Ford County Nursing Home and served as the Regional Representative for the Illinois Activity Professionals Association (IAPA) as well as the Program Chair for the Corn Belt Activity Directors Association (CBADA). Penny has also volunteered on PTO committees, advisory committees, and as a Girl Scout Leader.

Penny has been a member of The Secretariat for nearly five years and is currently serving as President. In previous years, Penny has served on and/or chaired committees including Office Professional of the Year, Nominations and Elections, and Boss of the Year. Penny enjoys being involved and sharing her ideas with others.

Bridget haas hillier

Susan ConradBridget Haas Hillier

SAC Secretary
Clerical/Secretarial classes
 (EEO 5)

Bridget has been with the University since 2009, and currently serves as an Office Support Specialist for Illinois International Programs (IIP) in the office of the Vice Provost for International Affairs and Global Strategies. In addition to providing administrative support to the Communications team and IIP, she primarily handles donor stewardship, gift assistance, and event coordination. With over 8 years in this field, she coordinates campus-wide events such as the International Achievement Awards and International Week, some in co-sponsorship with the Alumni Association, the Offices of the Provost and Chancellor, and International Student and Scholar Services. Combined, she possesses over twenty years of work history that includes sales, communications, website management, and employee supervision. Bridget has previously held positions within the Center for Innovation in Teaching & Learning, Illini Union Event Services, and the Technology Entrepreneur Center.

Bridget also serves as a member of the Campus Council for Alumni Relations and The Secretariat.  She is currently attending classes in her off-time to complete her Associate’s Degree in Business Management with a focus on Marketing.

Kristi Webster

Kristi Webster

Clerical/Secretarial classes (EEO 5)

Kristi is currently an Account Technician III in OBFS University Payables and has been with the university since 2011. During this time, Kristi has the opportunity to interact with staff on all three campuses, the extension offices, and the medical centers. Prior to joining the university, Kristi acquired a diverse background from the private sector. Kristi worked with AT&T under the Communications Workers of America (CWA) Union and held a position as a Union Representative where Kristi handled many disputes for her fellow co-workers. Kristi worked with Kellogg where Kristi participated in organizing events for employees and at RR Donnelley & Sons (RRD) in the financial division. At RRD Kristi participated on the Diversity Council and the Ergonomics team to improve the overall work environment for all employees with concentration on the production workers. Throughout her career Kristi has successfully operated as a liaison between staff and management by translating laws and policy and understanding how they affect the staff as well as the campus community. Kristi draws upon her cross industry experience to infuse new ideas and perspective to daily tasks while improving the total work climate.

jennifer lindsay sans

Jennifer Lindsay Sans

Clerical/Secretarial classes (EEO 5)

Jennifer started at the university as an Office Support Associate in 2012 with the Beckman Institute, working as the Space Reservations Coordinator. Prior to joining the university, she worked in sales and marketing since graduating from Eastern Illinois University in 2002 with a Bachelors degree in Family & Consumer Sciences. She is currently an Office Administrator with the College of Engineering Undergraduate Programs Office where she has been since 2015. She is the convocation coordinator for the largest College on campus with over 1,800 graduates each May. Jennifer enjoys being an advisor to the Engineering RSO’s, and the Engineering Council. She feels honored to play such an integral role in the Undergraduate Programs Office.

Jennifer has been a member of the Illinois Administrative Professionals (formerly the Secretariat) for four years and has served on the Programs & Events, and Philanthropy committees. She is also co-chair of the Scholarship committee. Jennifer enjoys being involved on campus, and sharing her ideas based on past experiences to improve the work environment.

Jeromy L. spesard

Jeromy L. Spesard

Skilled Crafts /Trade classes (EEO 6)

Jeromy has been a member of the United Association of Plumbers, Steamfitters, and HVAC technicians for the past 18 years.  He spent the first 10 years working from Local Union #149 out of Savoy, as well as various locals throughout the Midwest.  During his career, he has worked in many aspects of the trade; from apprentice for 5 years, to journeyman, and into several different leadership roles.

He has been on hiring committees here at the university, and enjoy spending time coaching youth sports for his children and their teammates.  He also serve on his local school board where he learns something new every day about a complicated system.

eugene g. josephitis

Eugene G. Josephitis

Service/Maintenance classes (EEO 7)

Gene has been a Maintenance Inspector with UI Housing since 2012. In this position, he is responsible for the security, maintenance and operations of Snyder, Taft-Van Doren and Weston Halls. Gene also performs Key-Access’s Safety-Security functions for all of Housing, with the Champaign Residence Halls being his main area of assignment. Since working with Housing, Gene has attended several access control classes with Stanley-BEST, completed professional locksmith training at Lockmasters Security Institute and completed Building Operator I Certification training. In 2017, Gene was nominated for the Chancellor’s Distinguished Staff Award.

Previously, Gene worked as a Project Manager for a local restaurant group. He also served as an electrician in the US Navy, where he acted as the command’s Electrical Safety Petty officer and served on the Morale, Welfare & Recreation Program. Gene has advocated for abused and neglected children in court as a volunteer with Champaign County Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA). He also served for a couple years as Treasurer for the Channing-Murray Foundation. Gene is an ordained minister and he is currently working on finishing his Bachelor’s degree through Eastern Illinois University.

Staff Advisory Council Liaisons

Jill Odom

Jill Odom

Illinois representative to the State Universities Civil Service Employee Advisory Committee (EAC)

Jill started at the University of Illinois in 2002 in the Office of Governmental Relations assisting the Director of State Relations. Then in 2004 moved to the Office of the Vice President for Administration, which has evolved into the Office of the VP, CFO & Comptroller. The VP/CFO’s office has a staff of two, Jill & Walt (the CFO), but the umbrella spreads wide and her duties range from policy development and implementation, business practices, ethics policies, budgeting, travel, employee management, and more. As the Administrative Assistant to the VP/CFO, Jill works side-by-side with Civil Service Employees and Academic Professionals giving her a unique perspective on the issues facing our employees and our university. Jill’s term with the Employee Advisory Council began January 2016.

Jill has lived in the Champaign-Urbana area almost her entire, life which gives her strong ties to both the community and the university. Jill is also a member of The Secretariat, serves as a Leader on the Campus Charitable Fund Drive, has recently completed her B.S. from Eastern Illinois University, is a very proud grandmother of two, and is excited to call herself a beginner jogger.

erica hanson

Erica Hanson

Illinois Administrative Professionals (formerly The Secretariat)

Erica Hanson, Human Resources Associate at the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, has been with the University of Illinois since February 2002, and has been involved with the Illinois Administrative Professionals (formerly The Secretariat) since 2015. She devotes her time and energy to ensuring staff needs are met, working on complex and delicate issues to promote the success of every staff member. She has served on various safety committees for several years in an effort to increase both awareness of safety issues and compliance of safety guidelines among staff. Currently she offers HR advice and guidance to management, supervisors, and staff for such issues as promotions, behavioral adaptation, budget forecasts, diversity/inclusion issues, and professional searches. She participates in employee relations matters, facilitating open employee communications and assistance with the investigation of employee complaints or concerns. Erica resides in Champaign, Illinois, with her husband, Chris, and her son, Hunter. Daughter Shelby and son Austin reside in the southern U.S. leading to many road trips each year.  She also has five gorgeous grandchildren. She has eclectic musical tastes and enjoys fishing for massive pike and walleye in Canada, barbecues with friends, antiquing, and the works of Gustav Klimt, William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Wallace Nutting, and Edvard Munch.

Heidi Johnson

Heidi Johnson, Director

Office of Diversity, Equity, and Access (ODEA)

Heidi Johnson is the Director of the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Access (ODEA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Heidi has served in this role since 2013.  Heidi has been with the University of Illinois for the last 15 years and has worked in many positions, including Coordinator of Management Information in the College of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences and Sr. Management Methods Analyst, Assistant Director, and Sr. Associate Director in ODEA. Heidi earned her master's degree in Human Resource Development from the University of Illinois in 2004. Heidi also holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Illinois University.

Christopher J. Allen

Christopher J. Allen

Illinois representative to the State Universities Civil Service Employee Advisory Committee (EAC)

Chris started at the University of Illinois in 2013, working as a pipefitter out of the Facilities and Services Department (F&S). He has worked as a pipefitter since 2003. He served his apprenticeship out of Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 65 in Decatur, Illinois, serving as an officer of the Local for 3 years. Throughout his career, he has worked on various construction projects, including powerhouses, refineries, factories, and schools. He is a graduate from Southern Illinois University with a bachelor’s degree in business management.  He is certified in med gas, welding, and is a licensed plumber. Chris’s term with the Employee Advisory Council began in 2016.

Larry Hays

Larry Hayes

Illinois representative to the State Universities Civil Service Employee Advisory Committee (EAC)

Larry started at the University of Illinois in January 2013, working as an electrician out of the Facilities and Services Department (F&S).  He served his apprenticeship with the I.B.E.W. Local 146, Decatur, Illinois in 1992. He has worked a big part of his career at the Clinton Nuclear Powerhouse, but also worked at various factories, refineries, foundries, hospitals, electrical services, and residential areas. He has served his Union as a steward on job sites and as an Executive Board member for the last eight years. He has lived in Decatur, IL and surrounding areas all of life.  In his spare time, his hobby includes showing and taking old/classic cars on road trips.  In addition to earning his Journeyman Electrician Certification, he has an A.A.S. in Electronics and an A.S. in Business. Larry's term with the Employee Advisory Council began in 2017.

Shanitera walker

Shanitera Walker

Faculty Staff Emergency Fund (FSEF)

Shanitera serves as a Human Resources Support Specialist. She began her career at the Krannert, shortly after earning her Bachelors in Communication from the University of Illinois at Champaign‐Urbana. As an integral member of the business office team, Shanitera utilizes her educational background and her passion for interacting with people from all walks of life as she tackles a variety of human resources tasks each day. Shanitera takes great pride in her work, always looking for opportunities to hone her skills and improve her processes.