Felisa Durr – Executive Director
Felisa has 27 years experience working at Caterpillar as an electrical engineer, global buyer, and logistics manager and is sighted. She was also the founder of SWAN National Women’s Network non-profit which operated from 2005-2012 of which she was one of the recipients of the 25 Women in Leadership award. Felisa is very active in the community with her family business Educatees (products and programs for children) as well as serving in leadership at St. Paul Baptist Church.
Prasad Parupalli – President
Prasad serves as President on the Executive board and is sighted. He has experience working at Caterpillar as a software engineer, Business Development Manager for the engineering design Center, and in various leadership roles. In addition to serving as Executive Board President of the CICBVI, he is a board member for the Illinois Math Academy and Easter Seals in Peoria.
Ken Gray – Vice President
Ken serves as Vice-President on the Executive Board and has low vision. His 30-year Caterpillar career included international assignments in engineering, marketing, product management, dealer development, and leadership. He was Caterpillar’s first corporate Director of Innovation and is perhaps best known as the champion of Caterpillar’s first hybrid construction machine. Ken holds Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Bradley University and has completed executive development programs at Stanford University, the Institute for Management Development in Lausanne, Switzerland, and Bradley University.
Lance Barke – Treasurer
Lance serves as Treasurer on the Executive Board and has low vision. He received a Bachelor’s in Engineering from the University of Illinois and a Master’s in Engineering from Bradley University. He started working full-time at Caterpillar in 2011 and loves making a positive impact on the world in his professional career and looks to make an even greater impact within his personal life by being on the Board of Directors. All of this has been possible in his life through the love and support of Jesus Christ, family and friends.
Molly Pasley – Secretary
Molly Pasley serves as Secretary on the Executive Board. She holds licenses as both a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) and Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments (TVI) and is sighted. She has experience working with children and adults in rural, suburban, and urban settings in Illinois.
Board of Directors:
Deb Conklin – Director
Bio and photo coming soon!
Gyla Grigsby – Director
Gyla Grigsby serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. She has been employed assembling items for Caterpillar and for the Pekin Times and has low vision. When she was 18, she became involved with the Center as a patron and has spent the past 15 years serving on the Board of Directors.
Jennifer Hehner – Director
Jennifer Hehner serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. She is a Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments (TVI) and a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) and is sighted. She has experience working with children who have low vision, blindness, deaf-blindness, and multiple impairments.
Robert Johannsen – Director
Rob Johannsen recently joined the board and brings nearly 40 years of leadership experience – first at Caterpillar and later at Bradley. His mom lost much of her sight from Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Rob wants to help others as they find themselves moving from sighted to visually impaired and stay close to potential cures for AMD.
Pete Lagouros – Director
Dr. Pete Lagouros serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. He is an ophthalmologist at Illinois Eye Center and provides care to many experiencing vision loss in Central Illinois. He serves on the board for several non-for-profits in Peoria and is sighted.
Xin Lu – Director
Xin serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. She grew up in Beijing, China, and became visually impaired as a teenager from glaucoma. Xin has lived in the U.S. for 23 years and worked in treasury management for a global pharmaceutical company. She earned her MBA from Roosevelt University in Chicago.
Kurt Norris – Director
Kurt Norris serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. He is currently the Global Director of Rental and Used Equipment Services for Caterpillar Inc and is sighted. He has 32 years of financial and marketing experience working for Caterpillar and supports the needs of Caterpillar Dealers around the world.
Cora Quinn – Director
Cora Quinn serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. She is totally blind and has served on the Executive board as President. Cora first became involved at the Center as a patron attending social outings and eventually became involved on the Board of Directors. Cora’s hobbies include listening to Cardinals baseball games, knitting, spending time her dog, and reading.
Lanna Scannell – Director
Lanna Scannell joined the Board in 2018. She currently works for OSF HealthCare and is sighted. In addition to serving on the CICBVI Board, she is a member of Peoria Rotary-North. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public relations and earned a master’s degree in business administration.
Leia Stewart – Director
Leia Stewart serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. She served as past Treasurer on the Executive Board and is blind. She earned a living as a medical transcriptionist for 14 and grew up participating in programs offered by the Peoria Area Blind People’s Center (now CICBVI). When you meet Leia, you will also meet her partner in travel, Mojave, a dog guide from Guide Dogs for the Blind in Oregon.
Darlene Violet – Director
Picture coming soon!
Darlene Violet serves as a Director on the Board of Directors. She moved to Peoria two years ago and is sighted. She holds a Masters Degree in Sociology and has been an active volunteer in Ohio and, currently, in Peoria. She is also President of a non-profit called Shared Blessings.