Professor Larry Shiner | 2019 William E. Winter Award Recipient

Professor Larry ShinerLeader, Volunteer, Advocate

Dr. Larry Shiner began teaching at Sangamon State University in 1971, and he has been an enthusiastic advocate for UIS ever since. “I loved the place from day one,” he says.
Larry came as a philosophy professor, but he soon began adding classes in adjacent areas—European history classes, a history of art class, a course on architecture. This interdisciplinary approach is one of the things he loves at UIS, along with its innovative approach to education, commitment to public affairs, and emphasis on teaching and putting the students first.
He has a special interest in the art, music and theater programs at UIS and energetically advocates for them among people he knows—so much so that Larry helps identify patrons who might be interested in supporting the programs.
Larry has also served on committees related to fundraising. These include the UIS Development Advisory Board, the Faculty and Staff Campaign Council, and more recently the Reaching Stellar Campaign Planning Committee.
He and his wife, Catherine Walters, generously support UIS financially, including the Suzanna Kay Shiner Scholarship Endowment Fund, created by Larry and Catherine in 2002 in memory of their daughter.
Larry and Catherine are great advocates of the University, and it was a privilege to present Larry Shiner with the William E. Winter Award for Outstanding Advocate Leadership at the 2019 Celebration of Philanthropy event on Wednesday, April 17, 2019.


“From the time Larry Shiner came to Sangamon State University in 1971, he has helped UIS to become a place that people want to call their own. He did this first through 35 years of teaching and scholarship at UIS. In our earliest days, Larry helped establish a student-centeredness that is still a hallmark of who we are. Larry is still engaged with the University, especially with art, music and theatre programs. He was instrumental in creating the art gallery, and we have a new theatre major partly due to his advocacy. Larry’s passion, energy and enthusiasm for the arts and humanities and for all of UIS is so contagious and encouraging that donors can’t help but be inspired. An outstanding teacher and scholar, he’s a wonderful advocate for UIS.”
Susan J. Koch
Chancellor, University of Illinois Springfield

“Larry’s commitment never wavers. Fellow faculty members respect his thoughtful perspective on important matters. Most actions he and Catherine take to support UIS are not necessarily visible to all—they don’t seek credit. They are generous with their support of many areas at UIS. Although ‘retired’ for a number of years now, Larry’s continuing engagement and leadership with the annual Faculty and Staff Campaign has been going on for two decades. In recent years, he has also served as an active member of the successful Reaching Stellar Campaign Committee. He is UIS!”
Jeff Lorber, Ed.D.
Vice Chancellor for Advancement, University of Illinois Springfield
Senior Vice President, University of Illinois Foundation

“Larry exemplifies the best of what it means to be a scholar and university citizen. Both during his time as a faculty member and in the years that have followed his retirement, he has been a productive scholar, most recently exemplified by his book to be published shortly by Oxford University Press on the philosophy of olfactory experience. During his years of teaching as well as in his retirement years, he has served as a much-appreciated mentor to students and to other faculty members, offering insightful editorial comments to improve prospective publications. Over the years as a university citizen, Larry has generously given of his time by serving on planning committees. He has been a sounding board for new ideas and an enthusiastic cheerleader for UIS. I am delighted that he is being honored with the William E. Winter Award.”
Harry J. Berman, Ph.D.
Provost and Interim Chancellor (retired), University of Illinois Springfield

“Larry Shiner has been an extraordinary supporter of the Arts on the UIS Campus. His giving didn’t stop at sharing his expertise teaching Art History classes, he also contributed singing bass in the inaugural year of the UIS Chorus (2001). He has been a great mentor to junior faculty (many now senior). Over the years Larry has attended nearly every UIS Music event, investing both time and monetary gifts to nurture, sustain and share a musical presence on campus. It’s always wonderful to see him in the audience. We are grateful for his passion and generosity.”
Sharon Graf
Director of UIS Music, Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology
University of Illinois Springfield

“Larry has been a remarkable colleague and a generous friend and supporter of the Visual Arts Gallery at UIS. He has served as a consistent and reliable source of support – in particular, with the annual gallery fundraising auction. His kindness is palpable, and I am inspired by his gentle and generous ways. Larry invests fully and thoroughly, in individuals and more broadly at UIS; it has been an honor to learn from and work alongside him.”
Allison Lacher
Exhibitions Manager, UIS Visual Arts Gallery
University of Illinois Springfield