Alumni

General InformationApplicationCurrent Members

Alumni Council

Made up of 25 alumni appointed to three-year terms and the president of the Student Alumni Association, this board meets four times a year. Members represent the interests of alumni and serve as liaisons to 25 University areas. The council assists in the recruitment of students, selects Alumni Award recipients, and was instrumental in establishing the Student Alumni Association.

Welcome Letter - Alumni Council President Eldon Brown '96

eldonWIU Alumni Association,

It is with great honor and excitement that I assume the role of President of the WIU Alumni Council. Having been a member since 2013, I am deeply committed to supporting the University, the Alumni Association, and all our Western alumni. 

WIU has faced many tough challenges in recent times. The landscape of higher education has experienced significant change, and Western has had to adapt accordingly. We continue to fiercely vie for a share of an ever-shrinking number of high school graduates and compete for limited outside funding. We remain determined to confront challenges head-on, working closely with the University, the Board of Trustees, and the WIU Foundation.

There is much to celebrate at our alma mater. The construction of the Center for Performing Arts is well underway, bringing a state-of-the-art facility to the Macomb campus and the broader region. Our distinctive academic programs continue to earn recognition and accolades, and the change of athletic conferences will enhance our ability to compete for and attract talented student-athletes. Additionally, we are nearly halfway to our goal of the $100 million giving campaign, For the W, which directly supports scholarships, student support, technology, and various other areas on campus.

I have had the privilege of hearing from countless alumni about how WIU shaped their lives and careers beyond graduation. These testimonials resonate deeply with me, and I encourage all of you to take a moment and commit to supporting WIU in at least one way this year. 

Whether it's contributing to your former academic department, club, sport, or student organization through a donation here , returning for a campus visit, volunteering to speak to a class, or recommending WIU to high school students in your life, your involvement and support are invaluable. Serving on the Alumni Council is yet another meaningful way to give back and make a difference.

Mark your calendars for the upcoming WIU Mega Reunion on Sept. 8-10 and Homecoming on Oct. 13-14, where we will welcome thousands of alumni back to campus. We also continue to host Alumni Association events across the country for those, like me, who live far from Macomb. I look forward to the opportunity to meet many of you during these events!

I want to thank our outgoing President Matthew Toland '05 '10 for his dedication and leadership. As I step into this new role, I am grateful for the trust placed in me. Together we will build upon the proud legacy we have inherited and support WIU for the future. I look forward to connecting with you, hearing your ideas, and working together to shape a future worthy of the Leathernecks name. Please do no hesitate to reach out to me at eldonbrown@gmail.com

Go 'Necks!

Sincerely,

eldon

Eldon Brown '96

President, WIU Alumni Council

 

Interested in joining the Alumni Council?

The WIU Alumni Association is looking for dedicated leaders of all ages, ethnicity, gender, geographic location, career fields, etc. to serve on the WIU Alumni Council. The Alumni Council strives to include a broad range of members that accurately reflects our student body and alumni community. Applicants are evaluated based on a number of factors, including engagement since graduating (e.g. attendance, giving back to WIU financially, referring students, returning to campus to speak to classes, offering career mentorship, etc.) and general Leatherneck Pride. If you or someone you know is an active alumnus that would be a good candidate, please fill out our online application form. The deadline is April 1.

2024 Alumni Council Meetings

  • Saturday, July 20
  • Friday, October 11

2023 - 2024 Council Members

Alumni Council Featured Member

Lori BilbreyLori Bilbrey 1990, 1996, 2008


Degree:
I love WIU so much I have graduated three times: 1990 Bachelor of Science in Special Education, 1996 Master of Science in Special Education and 2008 Master of Science in Educational Leadership.

Business Information:  Program administrator for ROYALS alternative education program for Regional Office of Education #26/serving students and families in 19 school districts in West Central Illinois. 

Advice for Freshmen:
Show up! Go to every class, every day no matter what! You'll quickly see that this separates you from those who don't show up. Get involved with student activities---there is something for every one on campus. The skills (organization, networking, problem solving, leading etc.) you gain in these organizations are very beneficial in life after college. I have been in many professional meetings over the years, you can always tell who honed their skills early.


Favorite WIU Memory: Being involved on campus. I loved being part of UUB and Greek Life--ASA all the way! Both provided great opportunity for fun, friendships and leadership development.  A funny: Once I parked my car in the circle drive (10 minute parking) in front of the union as I ran in to grab something from the UUB office. I got distracted and forgot my car there, went to class, and went to some meetings. I came back 6-7 hours later---Thank you parking services---No ticket!

Family Information/Special Interests and Hobbies: I grew up in Rockford and came to WIU in 1986.  I have been married to Curt Bilbrey '90 '93, since 1991 (we met at an AGR get together). We live in sunny Macomb and enjoy traveling, boating and spending time at Lake of the Ozarks. I've been a St. Jude Runner since 2000.