Rend Lake College trustees accepts bid for construction of new Event Center

INA, Ill. — Rend Lake College took its first step toward an all-inclusive textbook program Tuesday night at its monthly meeting of the Board of Trustees. Members unanimously passed the first reading of a change to RLC’s textbook policy that will take effect next Summer.

Since 1998, the college has used a textbook rental program that saved students millions over two decades. RLC’s board and administration believes the new, fee-based program will save students and families even more at a time when accessibility and affordability are imperative to higher education. Following a review of potential proposals by outside vendors — and careful consideration and analysis of options — administration believes students will be able to better budget and plan for textbook costs through a fee-based program. The college will continue to own and operate the campus bookstore, which will administer the new program. Students will be able to order their books online after registering for classes. More details, including the new fee structure, are expected to be presented and acted on at the August board meeting.

Unterbrink awarded Event Center construction bid

A bid of $1,562,708 from Bruce Unterbrink Construction Inc, of Greenville, was accepted for construction of the new RLC Event Center. The bid includes four alternates for sanding, cleaning and staining existing roof deck beams; replacing tile and painting walls in the lobby; installing wood wainscot on columns in the conference room and lobby; and removing clerestory windows and insulated metal panels, and installing new insulated metal panels. The funding for this project will come from bonding sources already available resulting in no additional cost to the taxpayers of the district.

Baseball Coach Bullington hired as new Academic Advisor
Warriors Head Baseball Coach Walker Bullington was appointed to a full-time, tenure-track Academic Advisor position, effective August 16. Bullington’s appointment to the Academic Advisor with Baseball position comes after former advisor Tonya Odum’s recent transfer to Coordinator of Industry Training & Apprenticeships. Coach Bullington took over the baseball program last August. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Carson Newman University (Tenn.) where he played first base for the Eagles.

Brown named Records Specialist

Elissa Brown was hired as a full-time Records Specialist, effective July 12. Brown has an Associate in Arts degree from RLC, and she had worked as an assistant teacher at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Richards appointed Business Office Specialist

Heather Richards was appointed as a Business Office Specialist, effective July 26. She has an Associate in Applied Science in office management from the University of Phoenix and an Associate in Science in early education from Eastern Illinois University. She had worked at Asbury & Associates, H&R Block and Charleston Family Dental.

Donoho hired as Toddler Room Lead Child Care Provider

The board ratified the appointment of Jacey Donoho as lead teacher for the toddler room at the Rend Lake College Foundation Children’s Center, effective July 1. Donoho has worked as an assistant teacher in the room for two years and has demonstrated the needed skills and abilities to be successful in this position. Donoho is also a graduate of the RLC Early Childhood Education program.

In other business, the board …

Approved a second reading raising the hourly rate for some part-time positions, effective July 1;
Approved revisions to the policy and procedure regarding dual credit, effective July 13;
Approved fees for Summer 2022;
Approved a first reading raising the hourly rate for some part-time positions, effective August 10;
Approved the 2021-22 Record Retention Handbook, Student Handbook, Student Worker Handbook and Police Department JCA Compliance Policy Handbook;
Reviewed and accepted the College Mission Statement and mission document;
Updated the college’s definition of co-curricular;
Accepted the resignation of Trio Adviser Faith Matzker, effective July 16;
Accepted the resignation of Rend Lake College Foundation Children’s Center Director Chrissy Confer, effective July 28.

Mark Your Calendars
Warrior Days Workshop, Wednesday, July 28, Rend Lake College Campus, 9:30 a.m. to noon
Warrior Days Workshop, Wednesday, August 4, Rend Lake College Campus, 9:30 a.m. to noon
RLC Sponsored Back to School Night for High School Students, Wednesday, August 4, Aquatic Zoo 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Warrior Days Workshop, Saturday, August 14, Rend Lake College Campus, 9:30 a.m. to noon
Fall 2021 Semester Begins, Monday, August 16
Annual RLC Foundation Golf Outing, Thursday, September 9, Rend Lake Golf Course, noon shotgun start
Fun Fest, Wednesday, September 15, Rend Lake College Ina Campus, noon to 3 p.m.
Auto Show, Saturday, October 9, Rend Lake College Ina Campus
RLCF Annual Scholarship Dinner, Thursday, October 21, Benton Civic Center, 6 to 8 p.m.

Franklin County Sheriff’s deputies make arrests, issue tickets

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Department released the following information regarding arrests and recent tickets issued.

6-20-21 Peyton H. Sieveking age 18 was ticketed for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

6-21-21 David K. Osburn age 36 of West Frankfort was arrested for 2 counts of theft.

6-21-21 Chase L. Cross age 21 of Hurst was ticketed for speeding.

6-21-21 Zackary B. Spiewak age 28 of Marion was ticketed for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

6-21-21 Johnathan L. Miuer age 19 of Christopher was ticketed for disobeying a traffic control device.

6-22-21 William H. Beaty age 30 of Benton was arrested for failure to register as a sex offender.

6-22-21 Jeremy E. Bartlett age 38 of West Frankfort was ticketed for operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

6-22-21 Charles S. Hargett age 61 of Thompsonville was arrested for burglary and possession of methamphetamine.

6-23-21 Kendrick K. Simelton age 29 of West Frankfort was arrested for violation of an order of protection.

6-23-21 George W. McWhirter age 73 of Mulkeytown was arrested for obstructing a Peace Officer.

6-24-21 Clinton R. Burroughs age 46 of Benton was arrested for driving while license suspended and failure to signal.

6-24-21 Hope L. Nelson age 48 of Benton was ticketed for failure to signal and operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

6-25-21 Kim A. Neal age 56 of Benton was ticketed for failure to wear a seatbelt.

6-25-21 Robert E. Bruce age 42 of Benton was ticketed for having an expired registration.

6-26-21 Shelia K. Brown age 39 of Mt. Vernon was ticketed for speeding.

6-27-21 Taylor N. Williams age 26 of Sesser was ticketed for improper use of an electronic device.

6-27-21 Joseph M. Ennen age 18 of Benton was ticketed for operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

6-28-21 Clark A. Ward age 29 of West Frankfort was ticketed for operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

6-28-21 Amy S. Forcum age 43 of Grand Rivers, KY was arrested for driving under the influence and driving while license suspended. Forcum was also ticketed for improper lane usage.


6-21-21 Tristan G. Pulley age 31 of Thompsonville. Failure to appear for criminal damage to property.

6-21-21 Kendra L. Fox age 30 of Benton. Failure to appear for dogs running at large.

6-21-21 Samantha K. Gardner age 23 of Johnston City. Failure to appear for driving while license suspended.

6-23-21 Joseph K. Williams age 38 of Ziegler. Failure to appear for violation of an order of protection.

6-25-21 Annabelle R. Hartline. Failure to appear for passing an emergency vehicle.

6-25-21 Hayden M. Manis age 24 of West Frankfort. Failure to appear for possession of a stolen vehicle.

6-25- 21 Tiffany E. Yocum age 29 of Christopher. Failure to appear for possession of a controlled substance.

6-25-21 Jesse B. Fenoglio age 40 of Benton. Failure to appear for domestic battery.

6-26-21 Jody D. Loeh age 53 of Royalton. Failure to appear for theft.

6-27-21 Zachary A. Wilson age 29 of Benton. Failure to appear for speeding.

The public is reminded that all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Sheriff David L. Bartoni

Happy Campers!

Summer camps and happy campers are taking center stage at Rend Lake College this week.

Here’s the link to the story.

Marion Cultural & Civic Center charts post-COVID reopening

Driving around the Marion Tower Square during the COVID-19 pandemic was especially depressing for a music fan.

Here’s a link to the story at the Southern Illinoisan.

Benton police make arrests

On June 21st, 2021 Benton Police arrested Kendra Fox, age 30, of Benton on an active Franklin County warrant for failure to appear. Fox was transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On June 21st, 2021 Benton Police were dispatched to the 800 block of South McLeansboro Street in reference to a domestic disturbance. Upon investigation, police arrested Gavin Wyant, age 18, of Benton for domestic battery. Wyant was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

RLC announces Honor’s List for Spring 2021 Semester

INA, IL – Rend Lake College is proud to present its President’s and Vice President’s Lists for the Spring 2021 semester.

The lists include 173 individuals named to the President’s List. Those students earned a 4.0 grade point average (GPA) during the semester with 12 credit hours or more. Another 207 students were named to the Vice Presidents’ List, and these students earned a 3.50 – 3.99 GPA during the semester as a full-time student status.

“We’re excited to see such a big number of hardworking students named to the President’s and Vice Presidents’ lists, and those students should be proud of the work they put in to reach this honor,” said RLC President Terry Wilkerson. “I speak for our faculty and staff when I commend them for their success and encourage them to continue working hard to reach their educational goals.”

RLC students receiving academic honors for Spring 2021, listed by communities, are:

President’s List

BELLE RIVE – Wendy Beaty, Hayden Pilson, Elizabeth Pittman

BENTON – Emily Clark, Mady Darr, Reid Donaldson, Olivia Drew, Jayla Eubanks, Autumn Filkins, Josie Fryar, Megan Hallemann, Madelin Hayes, Trevor Key, Madison Kreiner, Evie Krieger, Samantha Licka, Kaitlyn Matzker, Madeleine Miller, Megann Nelson, Trinity Price, Demi Ren, Christina Rodriguez, Owen Sanders, Daniel Stowers, Sesley Tedeschi, Peyton Tieffel, Kortney Wilcox

BLUFORD – Abigail Hulbert, Gavin Johnson, Samantha Schrum

BONNIE – Evan Bicanich, Reagan Newell

BUCKNER – Michaela Eubanks

CARBONDALE – Octavia Marshall

CARTERVILLE – Liliana Caamal, Jacob Jablonski, Jozlin Ziegler

CHRISTOPHER – Kyle Docherty, Kimberly Docherty, Daniella Hewitt, Dakota Noel

CISNE – Jayden Bailey

COULTERVILLE – Sarah Birchler, Tyler Yehling

DAHLGREN – Taylor Jonas, Katelyn Morris

DIX – Alex Bronson

DU QUOIN – William Neal, Emily Stanhouse

ELDORADO – Delaney Oglesby

EWING – Ragan Carter, Gage Harmon, Emeline Kerley, Ma’kayla Marshall

FAIRFIELD – Maverick Conrad

GOREVILLE – Whitney Bryan

HARRISBURG – Whitley Woolard

HINESVILLE, GA – Brittany Patterson

INA – Frank Barrett, Mitchell Gilman, Christopher Gory, Kyle Hetherington, Juhle Prange, Brandon Tucker


MACEDONIA – Kennedy Kimmel, Adrianna Maxwell

MAITLAND, Ontario, Canada – Evan Wilcox

MARION – Delani Graves-Napier, Ryan Grayson

MCLEANSBORO – Aimee Birkner, Emily Cox, Kolby Darnell, Matthew Gage, Trevor Gray, Clayton Keener, Camryn Parker, Michaela Rexing, Roger Scroggins, Brad Smith, Alyssa Vanzant, Courtney Wellen

MOUNT VERNON – Sunni Belmont, Joshua Bourland, Lukas Cooper, Jackson Creel, Briar Curd, Alivia Dillman, Rhett Ellis, Dominick Finney, Haleigh Harpole, Shane Hiatt, Reece Johnson, Coby Marquez, Madisyn Mcculley, Ashton Mcpherson, Briana Meyer, Brianna Morgan, Kyleigh Odle, Denise Oneal, Mikayla Robbers, Paige Saupe, Gracie Stover, Braden Young, Gary Johnson, Aaron Mccoy, Maryna Strickland

MULKEYTOWN – Luke Burkitt, Hannah Flatt, Bryce Leeper, Kaitlyn Mays, Trinitti Noto, Ofelia Perez, Amber Webb

NEW ATHENS – Cassidy Dickerson

NORRIS CITY – Tori Karnes, Bailey Richerson, Brooke Sell, Baylee Sutton

OPDYKE – Weston Brockhouse

PINCKNEYVILLE – Alexandra Eisenhauer, Megan Engelhardt, Amber Hagene, Sarah Issler, Dalton Kitchen, Kenzie Rushing

PITTSBURG – Justin Clark

RICHVIEW – Cydni Wrobel

SCHELLER – Dillon Banach, Samantha Mccowen

SESSER – Madison Hollis, Carlie Page

SPARTA – Lyndsey Stevens

STEELEVILLE – Charles Austin, Jesse Fedderke

TAMAROA – Taylor Bizaillion, Debra Compton, Paige Epplin, Kassity Lee, Megan Restoff, Jami Roznowski, Kayla Valentine

TEXICO – Emma Pemberton

THOMPSONVILLE – Olivia Barclay, Alexis Mcfarland, Kolton Mcfarland, Reed Raubach, Mallory Rone

VALIER – William Heard

WALNUT HILL – Erica Schmidt

WALTONVILLE – Raeghan Fitzjerrells, Destiny Holtz, Jaice Mccowen, Braelyn Walker
WATSEKA – Justin Bunting

WAYNE CITY – Madelyn Caudle, Caitlyn Dickey, Jeremy Meritt

WEST FRANKFORT – Madelyn Britton, Grace Engler, Nathaniel Jones, Abigail Mitchell, Kelly Murphy

WHITTINGTON – Dara Macdonald, Alexandra Sadler, Crystal Strauch, Rylee White

WOODLAWN – Sarah Chesnek, Payton Groennert, Katelynn Knox, Timothy Plemons, Haleigh Rynski, Roger Wright

Vice Presidents’ List

ASHLEY – Race Rynski

BELLE RIVE – Jayden Harrison, Tyler Henry, Jayme Piercy, Madison Scrivner, Hallie Sledge

BENTON – Kelcie Bayless, Kady Bone, Jade Bozovich, Bailee Cairel, Tyler Chamness, Robert Collins, Megan Diuguid, Kaelynn Dunford, Cailyn Fowlkes, Molly Goostree, Chloe Hill, Bailey Hopson, Isabella Jerrells, Emily Kovarik, Brendan Luster, Braxton Lutz, Mariela Martinez, Lucas Prior, Savannah Pulliam, Lauryn Roach, Heather Short, Mitchell Supancic, Morgan Swigonski, Allison Toms, Carson Webb, Jaxon Williams, Lindsay Willis

BLUFORD – Adelina Caronongan, Miranda Cross, Rylee Greenwalt, Cord Hails, Tylar Hanson, Samantha Hill, Richard Lumpkins, Brandon Shelton

BONNIE – Leslie Dent, Pierce Payne, Brooke Wilderman

CAMBRIDGE – Caden Bowers

CARLYLE – Karly Kampwerth

CARMI – Curtlyn Hayes

CARTERVILLE – Macie Blythe, Johnjie Samar

CHESTER – Edward Kerkhover

CHRISTOPHER – Tyler Hasenfang, Noah Hervey, Whitney Young

COMMERCE, Ga. – John Simmons III

COULTERVILLE – Paige Hand, Steven Hirte

DAHLGREN – Ezekiel Scott

DIX – Jaid Burkett, Alyssa Duncan

DU QUOIN – Yvonne Mcdonnough, Avery Waller

EWING – Faith Allendorf, Adam Carter, Logen Erthall, Angel Helm, Rachel Jennings

GOREVILLE – Esmeralda Hawkins

HARRISBURG – Keely Reed, Morgan Saar

HOYLETON – Abby Wesselmann

INA – Danielle Bieber, Korey Bunselmeyer, Arlon Butts, Nicholas Compton, Ashley Jarrett, Makenzie Martin, Brooke Stepter, Nicholas Wimber

JOHNSONVILLE – Chasidy Greenwalt

MACEDONIA – Logan Sink, Leigh Thomas, Amanda Weber

MARION – Jarrett Fitch, Cooper Smith

MCLEANSBORO – Samuel Benbrook, Breanna Bowers, Tyler Branch, Kolby Darnell, Kaitlynn Elizondo, Derrick Epperson, Kaylee Ingram, Erica Mccormick, Leah Ragan, Evan Shelton, Jevin Shreve, Garrett Webb

MILL SHOALS – Alexis Wheeler

MOUNT VERNON – Austin Ballard, Gabriel Blumeyer, Chapel Davis, Cervion Davis, Kaylee Dycus, Amber Eaton, Brandon Hall, Lolani Hall, Elleyese Halper, Seth Hamerski, Annibelle Harrison, Drake Hess, Summer Hobson, Cheyenne Ilbery, Brian Jeffries, Kaleb Jones, Kylee Keele, Halle Klockenga, Jillian Launay, Hayden Locke, Jessica Lockeby, Carson Long, Jaleese Mcwilliams, Samantha Moore, Krissa Morris, Latesha Nesbitt, Jessica Oliver, Denise Oneal, Kadi Petersen, Devin Pigg, Saige Price, Kristyn Reiman, Jay Reiss, Pacey Reynolds, Wyatt Schrader, Austin Ullery, Terron Williams, Cyndel Mckiness, Taurean Miller

MULKEYTOWN – Emily Bullock, Grant Gordon, Ember Milby

MURPHYSBORO – Rachel Finders

NEWTON – Ailyssa Lewis

NORRIS CITY – Shelby Vance-Orrick

OPDYKE – Erica Marlow, Emma Moser, Bailey Schuette, Jerri Shepard, Thaddeus Zedalis

PINCKNEYVILLE – Railyn Bardle, Cassandra Brown, Kelly Buschschulte, Jacelyn Catron, Jacob Crews, Morgan Epplin, Hattie Fisher, Abby Heine, Dakota Hinkle, Reid Keene, Hannah Kocian, Tristyn Morgenstern, Jessica Ramsey, David Wagner, Hayley Winter

SALEM – Blake Deitz, Wyatt Garren

SCHELLER – Hannah Miller, Caleb Miller, Martina Skorch

SESSER – Reid Basso, Destiny Boswell, Kassedy Cloe, Madyson Edwards, Mazie Eubanks, Haden Harmon, Jamie Thompson, Carrie Williams

SPARTA – Jose Zavala

TAMAROA – Madelyn Bearden, Grace Collins, David Iffert, Sara Waggoner

THOMPSONVILLE – Holly Cunningham, Leah Davis, Corbin Fitch, Tyler Jones, Alethia Kimble, Baily Lampley, Teresa Nolen, Kenlee Smith

VALIER – Clayton Woodland

WALNUT HILL – Matthew Walton

WAYNE CITY – Lillian Borah, Zachary Maxey, Kaylee Seymour

WEST FRANKFORT – Stella Furlow, Marylynn Manning, Jordan Scoville

WHITTINGTON – Toni Frayser, Annie Gates, Nicolas Roberts

WOODLAWN – Shaylin Arnold, Hayden England, Hunter England, Blake Mckay, Macy Williams

ZEIGLER – Blake Karas, Jacob Perry, Jacob Wawczak

Benton police make arrests

On June 10th, 2021 at approximately 12:21 a.m. Benton Police observed a suspicious male suspect in the 1100 block of North Main Street.

Upon investigation, police arrested Grey Abbott, age 43, of Benton for unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, unlawful possession of methamphetamine, and resisting a peace officer. Abbott also had an active White County warrant for domestic battery. Abbott was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On June 11th, 2021 at approximately 6p.m., Benton Police arrested Joshua L. Watkins, age 37, of Benton on an active Franklin County warrant for failure to appear for driving while license suspended. Watkins was transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

Search underway for Southern Illinois man accused of sexual assault of a child

Local authorities are seeking the public’s help in locating a 36-year-old accused of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child.

Here’s a link to the story at the Southern Illinoisan.

Missing Marion man identified as body found at Motel Marion demolition site

MARION – Marion Police have confirmed the identity of the the man found dead Tuesday at the demolition site of Motel Marion as Russell W. Bozarth, of Marion.

Here’s a link to the story in the Southern Illinoisan.

IHSA Sports Open Up Further As State Moves To Phase 5

The state of Illinois moved to Phase 5 as a part of the Restore Illinois pandemic relief plan on June 11, 2021. As a result of the move to Phase 5, many IHSA sports and activities have greater autonomy in scheduling, as well as in hosting fans. Some highlights of the move to Phase 5 include…

All IHSA sports can now schedule contests/meets with and against any other high school in the state, as well as with out-of-state opponents.
There are no longer any spectator limitations. All IHSA host venues, indoor and outdoor, may host fans at 100% capacity.
Masks are no longer required for student-athletes, coaches, and officials in low- and medium-risk outdoor sports.

In order to help with social distancing and limit gatherings, the IHSA is utilizing digital ticketing at all remaining Super-Sectional and State Final venues for the remainder of the 2021 school year. GoFan is the official digital ticketing partner of the IHSA. Fans can purchase Super-Sectional and State Final tickets via the GoFan app or at

The IHSA Girls and Boys Track & Field State Finals will employ Eastern Illinois University’s internal digital ticketing platform. State track & field tickets are available for purchase by clicking here.

More information can be found on the IHSA’s COVID-19 resource page.

Benton, West Frankfort, Illinois News | Franklin County News