Governor appoints Director of IEMA; Names Members of State Boards of Education, Investment and Gaming

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

SPRINGFIELD - Governor Bruce Rauner announced today he has appointed the new director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. In addition, he has filled vacancies on the Illinois State Board of Education, the Illinois State Board of Investment and the Illinois Gaming Board.

Name: James Joseph

Position: Director – Illinois Emergency Management Agency

Governor Bruce Rauner has selected James Joseph, 33, as the Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. Joseph will also serve as the Illinois Homeland Security Adviser. He brings nearly 15 years of experience in both the private and public sector to the position.

Since 2010, Joseph has worked for DuPage County in various roles within the Emergency Management Department. Currently, he is the Director and oversees three county departments, and is responsible for the Emergency Operations Center. For nearly two years, he served as Chief of the Security Division. He also was an Emergency Management Coordinator, where he managed county-wide emergencies and disasters.

Joseph also founded his own private security company called Center for Security Intelligence. He provided services in security operations, workplace violence prevention and emergency management. Clients included the Lake County Government, the 19th Judicial Circuit Court of Illinois and numerous businesses in the private sector.

Prior to owning his own business, Joseph worked at HSBC – North America as its Vice President of Security and Fraud Risk. He created and implemented security protocols for corporate offices, data centers and field offices. He also created security awareness strategies for the 70,000 employees of HSBC based in North America.

Joseph also holds a number of volunteer positions as a resident of Carol Stream. He is currently the Chairman of the Board of Police and Fire Commissioners. He also is the Chairman Pro-Tem of the Planning Commission and Zoning Board of Appeals.

Joseph earned his bachelor’s degree in law enforcement from Oakton College. He also holds various certifications from the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.


· DuPage County – Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management

o Director (2013-Present)

o Chief of Security Division (2011-2013)

o Emergency Management Coordinator (2010-2011)

· The Center for Security Intelligence, Owner/Consultant (2009-2010)

· HSBC – North America, Vice President – Security & Fraud Risk (2003-2008)

· Glenbrook Security Services, Account Manager, HSBC – North America (1999-2003)

Volunteer Service:

· Carol Stream Board of Police and Fire Commissioners, Chairman

· Carol Stream Planning Commission/Zoning Board of Appeals, Chairman Pro-Tem

Personal Information:

· Age: 33

· Hometown: Carol Stream

Board of Investment

Name: Mark Cozzi

Position: Member – State Board of Investment

Governor Bruce Rauner has selected Mark Cozzi to the Illinois State Board of Investment. Cozzi brings more than 25 years of private investment experience to the position.

Currently, Cozzi is the managing partner and founder of Lincoln Park Capital Group, and he provides consulting and advisory services to a wide-range of companies. He founded the company in 2008 and worked there until 2011. He rejoined the firm in 2014.

From 2011 to 2014, he was the senior managing director of the Electrum group, which is a private investment firm focused on the mining sector. He managed the company’s portfolio of investments.

Before Lincoln Park Capital Group, Cozzi was the executive vice president and chief financial officer of Leor Exploration and Production. In that role, he took a $22 million investment and transformed it into a $2.2 billion dollar equity stake in just three years for a 100 percent return on investment. He grew the company from two employees and $15 million in assets to 30 employees and $300 million in assets.

Cozzi holds an MBA from Northwestern University. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin in business administration.

Name: Marc Levine

Position: Member – State Board of Investment

Governor Bruce Rauner has appointed Marc Levine, 51, to the State Board of Investment. Levine brings more than 25 years of investment and business experience to the position.

Most recently, Levine was the co-founder and managing partner of Chicago Asset Funding, LLC. He worked at this boutique investment banking and asset management firm for eight years until 2012. Levine was able to use the company’s unique structure to successfully invest during the 2008-2009 financial crisis.

Levine has a wide range of experience from companies and banks in Illinois, California and Florida, where he oversaw financial transactions at a number of levels. He also served on the Board of Directors of General Motors, Navistar, and other technology startups and communication companies.

Levine is a certified public accountant, and earned his degree in accounting from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. He also has an MBA from Northwestern University.

Name: Shari Reiches

Position: Member – State Board of Investment

Governor Bruce Rauner has selected Shari Reiches, 52, to the Illinois State Board of Investment. Reiches has more than 30 years of experience in finance and capital management.

Reiches is currently a member, manager and principal of Rappaport Reiches Capital Management, which assists families and non-profit corporations with investment and financial planning. She co-manages the firm with other partners, and is the co-chair of the firm’s investment committee.

From 1999 to 2005, Reiches was the vice president of Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., Inc., where she worked as a financial adviser. Prior to that, she worked for U.S. Bank and its predecessor institutions, eventually working her way up to the president of private banking. In that role, she managed the private banking division.

Reiches earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She earned a master’s degree in banking from the University of Wisconsin.

Board of Education

Name: Lula Ford

Position: Member – Illinois State Board of Education

Governor Rauner has named Lula Ford, 71, to the Illinois State Board of Education. Ford brings 34 years of experience as a teacher, principal and assistant superintendent to the position. She also served the State of Illinois as an Illinois State Commerce Commissioner and as the Assistant Director of Central Management Services.

Ford began her career as an elementary school teacher in Chicago Public Schools. Throughout her three decade career at CPS, she was also a counselor and principal. Ford earned the Principal of Excellence Award from 1992-1994. She also served as an Assistant Superintendent and the Chief Instruction Officer.

Most recently, Ford was an Illinois State Commerce Commissioner. She served on that board for 10 years until 2013. Before that, she was the Assistant Director of the Illinois Central Management Services.

Ford earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. She also holds two master’s degrees in inner city studies from Northeastern Illinois University, and vocational counseling from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Name: Craig Lindvahl

Position: Member – Illinois State Board of Education

Governor Bruce Rauner has appointed Craig Lindvahl, 57, to the Illinois State Board of Education. Lindvahl brings more than 35 years of experience in education and business to the board. Lindvahl is an award-winning educator earning the prestigious Milken National Educator Award, and has twice been a finalist for Illinois Teacher of the Year.

Lindvahl is currently the Executive Director of the Midland Institute for Entrepreneurship, which is a company that educates future business leaders. He oversees the CEO (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) program. He speaks across the country about CEO, millennials and economic development.

Lindvahl spent 34 years in the classrooms of the Teutopolis District 50 Schools. He taught music, band, television production and entrepreneurship programs. Some of the accomplishments during his tenure include tripling the size of the district band program and the creation of a television production program. He also led a group of students to the Marshall Islands to produce a student-led documentary about the country and culture. The product was distributed to 5,000 schools through the Peace Corps.

Lindvahl is also an award-winning filmmaker, having earned 12 Mid-America Emmy Awards and 11 Telly Awards for his writing, producing, camera work and editing. Projects have taken him all over the world, and given him the ability to work with students from more than 25 countries. He currently owns Callan Films Corporation, which produces documentaries and corporate projects.

Name: Roberta Parks

Position: Member – Illinois State Board of Education

Governor Bruce Rauner has selected Roberta Parks, 64, to the Illinois State Board of Education. Parks brings more than 35 years of experience to the position.

As the Vice President for UnityPoint Health Methodist|Proctor Foundation, she oversees the $27 million foundation, which benefits two hospitals and doctors in the system, along with Methodist College. This also includes fund development; donor relations; and the communications of major gifts, planned giving and special events.

For 15 years until 2013, Parks was the President of the Peoria Chamber of Commerce. She was responsible for all operations of the 1,100 member organization. Parks was directly responsible for government affairs, education, transportation and community development programs.

Parks has also worked for the City of Peoria as the Intergovernmental Coordinator. She worked in tandem with the Mayor and City Council to serve the people of Peoria.

Parks is a graduate of Bradley University, with a bachelor’s degree in business management.

Name: Eligio Cerda Pimentel

Position: Member - Illinois State Board of Education

Governor Bruce Rauner has selected Eligio Cerda Pimentel, 49, to join the Illinois State Board of Education. Pimentel has a demonstrated track record of supporting education in underprivileged communities through his work in the community. He brings nearly 20 years of professional experience, both as an attorney and engineer, to the position.

Currently, Pimentel is an attorney and board member at McAndrews, Held & Malloy, Ltd. He joined the firm as an associate in 1996, working his way up to a member of the board. Pimentel is a patent attorney, focusing on litigation; and he maintains a transactional practice focusing on intellectual property rights.

Pimentel is an avid-supporter of providing educational opportunities to economically disadvantaged children. He is currently on the Board of Directors of Cristo Rey High School, serving students on Chicago’s southwest side who could not otherwise afford a private college-prep education. Pimentel also served on the Board of Directors of the Mary Crane Center, which promotes early-childhood education on Chicago’s west and northwest sides.

Pimentel is the son of migrant farm workers from California’s Central Valley. He went on to Stanford University, earning a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. He worked for three years as an engineer at the Bechtel Corporation, and then decided to go to law school, earning his Juris Doctorate from the University of Minnesota.

Gaming Board

Name: Don Tracy

Position: Chairman - Illinois Gaming Board

Governor Bruce Rauner has selected Don Tracy, 54, to become Chairman of the Illinois Gaming Board. Tracy’s background as an attorney and business owner gives him the experience necessary to lead the board dealing with an important industry in Illinois.

Tracy is currently a partner at Brown, Hay & Stephens LLP, which is the state’s oldest law firm and the former firm of President Abraham Lincoln. Tracy currently practices corporate law, including acquisitions and business litigation. He represents a number of closely held and family businesses. Tracy is also general outside counsel to Dot Foods, Inc., which he owns with his 11 siblings. Dot Foods is the nation’s largest food re-distributor.

Prior to joining Brown, Hay & Stephens, LLP in 1995, Tracy was a partner at Heyl, Royster, Voelker & Allen for six years. He also owned and operated his own law firm for nine years. Tracy also has experience as in-house counsel at the Illinois National Bank of Springfield. He began his law career at Baker & Donelson in Memphis, Tenn.

Tracy serves on a number of boards in the Springfield area, including the Abraham Lincoln Association, the Dana Thomas House Foundation and the Illinois National Guard & Militia Historical Society. He also was appointed to the Oak Ridge Cemetery Board in 1992 and served on it for four years.

Tracy is a graduate of Arizona State University and has a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He earned his law degree from the University of Memphis.

Name: Thomas Dunn

Position: Member - Illinois Gaming Board

Governor Bruce Rauner has named former Will County associate judge and state Senator Thomas Dunn to become a member of the Illinois Gaming Board. Dunn, 72, was instrumental in bringing riverboat gambling to his district of Joliet, which brings a different perspective to the board.

Dunn served the people of Joliet and Will County as a state senator from 1972 to 1997. He was a ranking member of the judiciary committee, and also served on the public health, welfare, corrections and revenue committees.

Most recently, Dunn served as an associate judge for Will County. He was appointed in 1997 and served for eight years until 2005. He is a graduate of St. Ambrose College with degrees in political science and history. He earned his law degree from DePaul University.