Current Location: Battle Creek, MI
Hometown: Elgin, IL
UIS Degrees: M.P.A. 2014 (Public Administration), B.A. 2012 (Criminal Justice)
Other Education: Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Labor Relations
Current Position: Starts as county administrator for Boone County, Illinois, in September 2020
Negotiated police, fire, and emergency communicator (911) labor contracts for almost 1,000 employees employed with the City of Tulsa.
Memories of SSU/UIS
“As a first-generational college student, it was an honor being appointed to the University of Illinois Alumni Association Board of Directors as the UIS Student Representative. I would not be where I am today without the professional knowledge and skills I gained as part of my role on that board.”
How did UIS change or prepare you?
“UIS offered me several opportunities to become involved. Most importantly, UIS’ tight-knit campus community gave me the opportunity to establish a mentor relationship with one of my criminal justice professors. Dr. Juanita Ortiz encouraged me to go to graduate school because it would better prepare me for my career as an aspiring City Manager.”
“Many do not know this, but I recently became a reserve police officer with the City of Brookings because I still have a passion for law enforcement. It also gives me the opportunity to interact with the public who might be in need of assistance.”
Advice for Students
“Local government is a very challenging, yet rewarding career. If you want to go into this field, obtain a government internship somewhere (preferably in local government). UIS’ GPSI program proved very beneficial to my professional development. The International City/County Management Association’s (ICMA) Local Government Management Fellowship Program accelerated my career path to becoming a city manager because it supplied me with real-world management skills in a local government setting. If you are an aspiring city manager, you will need a master’s degree. UIS’ Master of Public Administration (MPA) program is top-notch and the professors are phenomenal.