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Alumni elect leadership, directors to alumni association board


Nanette Montgomery Bess '78 was recently chosen to serve as president-elect of the Illinois College Alumni Association Board of Directors. She will serve alongside new directors who were also recently elected.

Joe Calmese ’07, Pamela Hart ’03, Claudia Woodman Predmore ’80, Erin Washington ’17 and Scott Tonsor ’91 will serve as directors for five-year terms.

Nanette Montgomery Bess

President-Elect Nanette Montgomery Bess ’78, of Pittsfield, previously served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors from the fall of 

2016 to the fall of 2020. A speech and drama major, Nanette performed in many theatre productions at Jones Theatre. 

She was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon and served as vice president, worked two years as  floor counselor in Pixley Hall, was a member of Alpha Psi Omega theatre fraternity, an officer of Hilltoppers, elected to the 1976 Homecoming Court, served on the Homecoming Committee, was chosen Greek Week Queen in 1975, and served as secretary of her senior class. She volunteered to time swim meets, help move library books from Tanner Hall to Schewe Library, and assist with chapel services. 

Bess earned a master’s degree in speech and language pathology from Western Illinois University in 1980. In 2001, she became a certified assistive technology practitioner to better serve her non-verbal clients. She worked as a public school speech pathologist for more than 40 years. She served as president of the Pike County Teachers Association for several years. She is also an involved member of the Milton Christian Church, leading worship music, teaching Sunday School and assisting with youth programs.

Joe Calmese

Joe Calmese ’07, of Grover, Missouri, is a first-generation graduate originally from St. Louis. He studied physics, graduating as the top student and recipient of the George W. Horton Sr. Prize in Physics. At IC he was president of the Coalition for Ethnic Awareness (CEA), a student ambassador and admissions intern, a founding member of IC Rides, and a resident advisor for Turner Hall and a hall director for Crampton Hall. He earned a master’s of business administration degree from Washington University in St. Louis, graduating with honors and being inducted into the Beta Gamma Sigma honor society. He worked with at-risk kids in a robotics club he created in the north part of St. Louis while building his professional career. Today, he is CEO of ADDMAN Engineering, a high-tech 3D printing company focused on supplying parts for race teams, rocket and space companies, and the healthcare industry.

Pamela Hart

Pamela Hart ’03, of Petersburg, majored in sociology and was a member of Phi Delta Kappa and Psi Chi honor societies. She participated in a BreakAway program to Turkey and a cultural exchange with Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan. After graduating, she lived in Japan before returning to the United States to attend Valparaiso University School of Law. She received her juris doctorate in 2009. Hart is a partner at Scott & Scott, P.C., Attorneys at Law in Springfield. She is the chair of the Springfield Inquiry Panel for the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission and a member of the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism. She also serves on a number of other boards and committees in the community.  

Claudia Predmore

Claudia Woodman Predmore ’80, of O’Fallon, Missouri, is a first-generation graduate who majored in political science and history, and received a certificate in secondary education. In 1998, she completed a master’s degree in education curriculum at Quincy University. She was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon and was president for a semester, a cheerleader, and a recipient of the Outstanding Secondary Student Teacher Award. She was a teacher at Barry Junior High and High Schools from 1980 to 2000, and Fort Zumwalt North Middle School in O’ Fallon, Missouri, from 2000 to 2018, where she received the North Middle Teacher of the Year Award in 2004. Since retirement, Predmore has done work assisting with the day-to-day routines of special needs adults through the Missouri MENTOR program. She is a member of Dardenne Presbyterian Church and serves on the administrative team of International Bible Study Fellowship for O Fallon, Missouri.

Erin Washington

Erin Washington ’17, of Chicago, graduated magna cum laude with a degree in communication and rhetorical studies and Spanish. She was inducted into the honor societies of Phi Sigma Iota and Sigma Tau Delta, and served as vice president of Lambda Pi Eta; studied abroad in Alicante, Spain; was active in Best Buddies, Alpha Phi Omega, and Sigma Phi Epsilon; was co-captain of Lincoln Security Detail, IC’s theatrical improv troupe; tutored in the Latino community; led after-school activities at the Spirit of Faith soup kitchen; interned with The Source; and, as an intern for the Helen A. Dean Community Garden, she grew produce to donate to Jacksonville food centers. After graduating, she went on to complete a master of nonprofit management degree at DePaul University. Now, she is the development coordinator of donor relations for the medicine and biological sciences development department at the University of Chicago. 

Scott Tonsor

Scott Tonsor ’91, of Jerseyville, studied political science and history with a secondary education certificate. He was a four-year letterman in football and captain of the 1990 football team. Tonsor earned a master’s degree in educational administration from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. He has worked in education for the last 29 years as an administrator, teacher, coach and athletic director. He resides in Jerseyville where he is a teacher and a coach.

The Illinois College Alumni Association Board of Directors includes elected alumni representatives who share a mission to further the interests of the College, strengthen the connections between alumni and their alma mater, and foster a spirit of fellowship and goodwill in the alumni community.

About Illinois College

Founded in 1829, Illinois College is a residential liberal arts college fostering academic excellence rooted in opportunities for experiential learning while preparing students for lifelong success. The college is located in Jacksonville, Illinois. With an enrollment of more than 1,000 students, the college offers over 50 undergraduate programs. In 1932 the society of Phi Beta Kappa established a chapter at Illinois College, and it remains one of only 11 in the state.

Illinois College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.

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