General InformationApplicationCurrent MembersPresident's LetterResolution

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 from New Alumni Council President Matthew Toland '05 '10

Hello WIU Community,

I am honored to have been chosen the next President of the WIU Alumni Council. My time as an undergraduate and graduate student at Western, a member of the Council for the last 10 years, and my career as a museum professional, have prepared me to lead this talented group on the Council. We are already off to a great start. The Executive Committee met in Macomb in June to set some goals and talk about plans for the next couple of years. We plan to continue our important work in service to the Alumni, the Alumni Association, and the University, but will use our new goals to help focus that work to achieve success. We also plan to work closely with President Huang and his administration to align our work with the goals of the University as it grows and changes.

We need your help! We need your support and guidance to help us, the Alumni Council, as well as Western as a whole, to reach our full potential. Please reach out to me, to President Huang, to your former department, college, school, place of work, team, residence hall, or anyone at Western and find out what you can do. As students, the reason we were able to thrive at WIU and become the people we are today is because generous and talented alums who came before us gave back after they had left. Just as I feel prepared to take on my new role as President of the Alumni Council because of my education at Western, I'm sure you feel prepared to tackle almost any challenge because of what Western gave to you. It is time to give back and provide those same opportunities to the current and future students of our beloved Alma Mater. There are so many ways to contribute including encouraging students to consider Western, visiting campus to speak to classes about your experiences, attending alumni events in your area, and of course donating to the Alumni Association, scholarships, or any area at WIU that is important to you. Give however you can.

Thank you for this opportunity to lead. Thank you to the members of the Alumni Council, the Alumni Relations Staff, the University, and the nearly 140,000 WIU Alumni for what you have done, and what you plan to do soon, to help Western grow. Please contact me directly here with any questions or concerns. And again, thank you, thank you, thank you.


Matthew Toland '05 '10

2022 Alumni Council Meetings

  • Saturday, April 23
  • Saturday, July 16
  • Friday, October 21

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.

2021 - 2022 Council Members

On July 11, 2020, at its summer meeting, the Western Illinois University Alumni Council passed a resolution focused on racial equality, anti-racism and support for Black alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends. The WIU Alumni Council is committed to standing up to systemic racism and implementing action to end racism, harassment, discrimination and hate.


Alumni Council Featured Member

Gayle Spencer 1987

Gayle SpencerDegree: Bachelor of Science from University of Nebraska-Omaha in 1983, Master's in College Student Personnel from WIU in 1987 and Ph.D. in Student Counseling and Personnel Services from Kansas State University in 2004.


Business Information: Director, Illinois Leadership Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Advice for Freshman: Get organized and go to class. If you need help, ask for it. Ask your RA, an academic advisor or a professor. There are many wonderful people at WIU there for you!

Favorite WIU Memory: All the great events we had on campus for students. The Office of Student Activities, both staff and students, worked tirelessly to have great things for students to see and learn. My experience at WIU set me up for a wonderful career in higher education.

Family Information: Married to Dale Billam; we have two children, Kady and Thom. My favorite thing to do is to attend and watch sports. From Cubs baseball, to Blackhawks hockey, to Big Ten Sporting events; I love it all! I also love to travel.

Click here for farewell letter from the Alumni Council Past President Brian Savage '73