Bob grew up in the western suburbs of Chicago and earned a Bachelor of Science degree from UIUC, followed by an MD at UIC, followed by a 3-year pediatric residency in Ann Arbor, MI. He spent 2 years as Medical Officer in the Navy in Newport, Rhode Island, and then returned to Champaign-Urbana as a pediatrician at Christie Clinic. Bob was diagnosed in 1996 with multiple sclerosis, which encouraged a retirement earlier than originally anticipated. Sue and Bob have been happily married for 52 years. We especially enjoy visits with our 4 adult children, their spouses, and our 7 grandchildren. Bob enjoys time with friends and meeting other people. His woodworking shop is his favorite place to be, even as projects are smaller than the desks and tables, and rocking chairs he used to build.
Sue grew up on a farm SE of Bement, IL, and attended Bement schools from kindergarten through high school. She graduated from Millikin University in Decatur, IL, earned a Diploma in Nursing from Decatur Macon County Hospital School of Nursing and then worked as an RN in Decatur, Chicago, and finally Ann Arbor, MI. Bob and Sue married in 1970 after his sophomore year of UofI medical school in Chicago. They have 4 adult children, all graduates of the UofI. They lived in Ann Arbor, MI during Bob’s medical residency, Newport, RI for his two years of US Navy duty and in 1976 we moved to Urbana, IL. Sue taught at Weekday Preschool and has enjoyed a variety of classes at Parkland College, especially in the Art Department. She was employed in First Presbyterian Church, Champaign’s office before retirement and has served in various community volunteer roles for new learning experiences. Sue delights in the company of family, especially her 7 grandchildren, and friends. She also enjoys learning, reading, WORDLE, light gardening, less cooking, and dining out.
Marianne Downey, CFRE (Ret.) resides in Champaign County with her husband and family. She is a University of Illinois retiree after serving 17 years as a professional fundraiser. She is active in the Champaign-Urbana Kiwanis, the Urbana Parks Foundation, and the Active Aging Champaign-Urbana Steering Committee.
Urias Betoel Escobar
Betoel Escobar is an Assistant Director & Coordinator of Student Support Services (SSS) at the Office of Minority Student Affairs (OMSA). He also serves as a pre-law adviser for OMSA and adviser for the Minority Association of Future Attorneys (MAFA). He serves on several Student Affairs committees and the Council of Academic Professionals (CAP) as a representative of District 7. Prior to joining OMSA, he was a music professor at the Inter-American University in Puerto Rico and a trombone player with the National Symphony Orchestra in Costa Rica. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree in music performance from the North Carolina School of the Arts and the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook, respectively. His doctoral degree in Music Education is from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Jim grew up in central (rural) New Jersey, received a B.S.E.E from Rutgers in 1961, and joined the General Electric Company. After several assignments in Vermont, Virginia, and Maryland he started working at the Electronics Laboratory in Syracuse New York. While working there and another General Electric department in Syracuse Jim started graduate studies at Syracuse University, completing a doctoral program in 1981. He then joined the Department of Computer Engineering at Syracuse in 1991 and taught graduate courses until retiring in 2019. Jim has 3 children and 5 grandchildren. They enjoy hiking and skiing and visits to Cape Cod, Civil War battlefields, and several trips to Disney World. Jim’s hobbies now are reading, collaborating with a former student and friend on software projects, and maintaining a technical website. He is pleased to be a member of the Chart Community Advisory Panel.
Joan Zernich has a master’s in education from the University of Illinois and a long-standing the career of 19 years at Carle Medical. She has been active in the Daily Bread Soup Kitchen, United Way, League of Women Voters, and was previously the president of the Executive Club in Champaign County. Joan is a part of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and the WILL Community Advisory Committee. She has also served as a mentor for Illinois Promise, a Money Mentor at the University of Illinois, and on the Grants Committee at CFECI.