From the beginning Dr. Elaine P. Maimon spoke about the future in a way that made us expect good things. In one of her first speeches as Governors State University’s president, she told us to be “ready for luck,’’ and shared the secret to achieving that goal. “Luck comes disguised as tons of hard work,’’ the new president said before making a commitment to GSU. “I promise you that we will work hard together, grow together, and get lucky together.” And, that is just what happened. From welcoming freshmen and Jax, the president’s legacy is one of historical transformation amid unprecedented challenges. Here, we celebrate those milestones and the woman who has left an indelible mark on Governors State, its students and the Southland region. As we look back on our 13-year lucky run together, Jaguars thank you and wish you well on your next journey.
Foundation Legacy Contribution
In honor of the service and philanthropy of Drs. Mort and Elaine P. Maimon, the Governors State University Foundation Board will donate $100,000 to the Student Emergency Fund.
“The Maimons have led transformative change
in fundraising at Governors State University.”
— Foundation Board Chairman Carney Barr
Congratulations, Dr. Maimon!
The Great Recession hit within a year of Dr. Elaine P. Maimon’s installation at Governors State University, followed by a budget crisis that left the university without funding for two years. Like a seasoned navigator, Dr. Maimon steered the university’s ship and calmed students, many of whom were grappling with their own financial storms. Just as the sun was setting on her presidency, a pandemic cast a dark cloud over the 2019-20 academic year. Here, supporters celebrate Dr. Maimon’s commitment and tenacity in the face of adversity, and wish her well as she takes flight to soar to new heights.
A Legacy of Transformation
The Governors State University that Dr. Elaine P. Maimon inherited in 2007 is a very different institution than the one she leaves in 2020. What had been exclusively an upper level institution is now a full, four-year university. A once empty field now houses a living and learning center, and a winning athletic program thrives where there had been a void.
Now, Therefore, Be it Resolved...
University and area leaders extoll the virtues of a historic presidency.
Saying thank you does not seem enough. Your dedication to this university and its students has been nothing except exceptional.
Lisa M. Harrell – Chairperson, GSU Board of Trustees
Elaine, to me, has one of the most important legacies to GSU, that’s the focus––in the community and the world stage––on the new majority of students and giving voice to students where education can really transform their lives and bring them out of poverty.
Angela Sebastian – Trustee
My definition of a good leader is someone who inspires a group of people to do extraordinary things and you’ve done just that.
Kevin Brookins – Vice Chair, GSU Board of Trustees
As a brand-new board, you helped guide us through the convoluted background processes that are required of operation of a university.
Jim Kvedaras – Secretary, GSU Board of Trustees
I personally want to thank you for what you have done for Governors State University.
Pedro Cevallos-Candau – Trustee
A few words come to mind describing you. Scholar. Highly accomplished. Honorable. And––on a personal note––a very classy lady. Thank you.
Anibal Taboas – Trustee
I speak today to say thank you to President Maimon on account of a job well done, a vision achieved.
Bruce Friefeld – Former Trustee and Board Chair
I just would like to personally thank you for your contributions to GSU, especially the much-needed capital improvement.
Sheryl Jones-Harper – President, GSU Civil Service Senate
Thank you so much for everything you have done for GSU in your 13 years of excellent service.
David Golland – President, GSU Faculty Senate
I’ve been at GSU for as long as you have, I appreciate everything you have accomplished in the last 13 years and I wish you the very best in your next journey.
Catherine Tymkow – Vice President, GSU Faculty Senate
Everyone is wondering how could anyone succeed you, Elaine? We are so thankful for you, and we appreciate you, Elaine.
David Barr – GSU Foundation Board Member
It’s been a privilege serving with Dr. Maimon. Thank you so much for your service and contribution.
Paul Labonne – GSU Foundation Vice President
You touched my heart in terms of your commitment and the love you have for the students. I wish you well, and know you have left and indelible impression from one educator to another.
Michelle Redd-Newell – GSU Foundation Interim Treasurer
Dr. Maimon, you've done wonderful work and you've changed so many lives.
Mike Tomano – Host of 92.7 the Valley
She's led formative change...a champion for equity in this state.
John Atkinson – Chair, Illinois Board of Higher Education
Over the years, we have cited your work on transfer and student success at The Kresge Foundation.
Bill Moses - Managing Director of Education, The Kresge Foundation