Illinois Pioneers

WILL - Illinois Pioneers - October 14, 2014 ~ Comment (0)

Bank vice chairman Ed Scharlau

7:30 pm Thursday, Oct. 23, on WILL-TV
Ed Scharlau

Busey Bank vice chairman Ed Scharlau,  who started in banking as a part-time janitor and teller, and now is vice chairman of Busey Bank, has been in the banking business in Champaign-Urbana for a half century. He began in 1964 when he worked as a part-time teller, earning $1.25 an hour, and worked nights as a part-time janitor, earning $2 an hour.


WILL - Illinois Pioneers - October 03, 2014 ~ Comment (0)

U of I entomologist May Berenbaum

7:30 pm Thursday, Oct. 9, on WILL-TV
May Berenbaum

May Berenbaum has received many honors from fellow scientists, and on Oct. 3, the White House announced that she's a recipient of the National Medal of Science. But she also has numerous fans among the general public who have been caught up in her infectious love of insects. Host David Inge said she put aside her childhood fear of insects to become an entomologist.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - September 26, 2014 ~ Comment (0)

Trans fats researcher Fred Kummerow

7:30 pm Thursday, Oct. 2, on WILL-TV
Fred Kummerow

Fred Kummerow has long argued that trans fats, found in a wide range of processed foods, pose a much greater risk than cholesterol. He got interested in trans fats in the late 1950s when he examined arteries of people who had died from heart attacks and found them clogged with trans fat. “His concerns were dismissed because he was a chemist and not a cardiologist,” said host David Inge. The University of Illinois emeritus professor, who’s been researching the relationship between diet and heart disease for more than 60 years, talks with Inge about his lifestyle, which includes eating an egg every day, and gives some hints about his current research interest—Alzheimer’s disease.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - September 16, 2014 ~ Comment (0)

Human Kinetics founder Rainer Martens

7:30 pm Thursday, Sept. 25, on WILL-TV
Rainer Martens

Rainer Martens is an internationally recognized sports psychologist, known for creating the most widely used coaching education program in the U.S. and for writing Successful Coaching, America's best-selling coaching textbook. Host David Inge talked to him about the mental side of sports and the coaching style that he advocates.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - September 05, 2014 ~ Comment (0)

Japanese culture teacher Shozo Sato

7:30 pm Thursday, Sept. 11, on WILL-TV
Shozo Sato

Shozo Sato is internationally known as a theater director for his adaptations of Japanese Kabuki plays for western audiences, and the author of books on Japanese brush painting, flower arranging and the tea ceremony.  He first came to Champaign-Urbana in 1964 as an artist-in-residence, and became a professor of art and design at the University of Illinois. He also created the original Japan House, a center for Japanese culture on the U of I campus. He taught the Japanese tea ceremony to C-U residents as a way of introducing Japanese life to the community.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - August 05, 2014 ~ Comment (0)

Illinois Pioneers Season Premiere: Justice Rita Garman

7:30 pm Thursday, Sept. 4, on WILL-TV
Justice Rita Garman

When she was in law school, some professors told Rita Garman she didn’t belong there because she was a woman. After graduation, law firms said they couldn’t hire her because clients didn’t want a woman lawyer. But Garman found work as a legal-aid attorney and went on to work at every level of the state’s court system. Today, she serves as Chief Justice of the Illinois Supreme Court. She is David Inge’s first guest on the new season of Illinois Pioneers.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - December 13, 2013 ~ Comment (0)

Industrial recycling innovator Lou Mervis

7:30 pm Thursday, Dec. 19, on WILL-TV
Lou Mervis

Lou Mervis, who retired in 2005 as president and CEO of Mervis Industries in Danville, talks about guiding his family's company to become a leader in meeting the manufacturing and recycling needs of various industries. He also reflects on his achievements as a volunteer, from founding the Danville Area Economic Development Corporation to his 17-year service as a member of the Illinois State Board of Education.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - December 12, 2013 ~ Comment (0)

Film producer/director Frederick Marx

7:30 pm Thursday, Dec. 12, on WILL-TV
Frederick Marx

Host David Inge interviews the C-U native and U of I graduate about his 35-year career in the film and television industry.

From his 1994 breakout work, "Hoop Dreams," to his most recent film, "Journey from Zanskar," Marx addresses multiculturalism and expresses empathy for the plight of the disadvantaged. "I love underdog stories," he said. He was a Guest-in-Residence at Unit One/Allen Hall on the U of I campus.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - November 21, 2013 ~ Comment (0)

Steve Burgess recalls his father, James R. Burgess Jr.

7:30 pm Thursday, Nov. 21, on WILL-TV
James R. Burgess

Steve Burgess reveals his journey of discovery about his father, James R. Burgess, pictured, Champaign County's first African American State's Attorney. Steve learned about his father's role in World War II after his father died. James Burgess was a first lieutenant commanding one of six African American tank companies in the famous 761st Tank Battalion that served under General George Patton, including at the Battle of the Bulge.

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WILL - Illinois Pioneers - November 14, 2013 ~ Comment (0)

Renowned baritone Nathan Gunn

7:30 pm Thursday, Nov. 14, on WILL-TV
Nathan Gunn

Host David Inge interviews renowned baritone and University of Illinois professor Nathan Gunn, who discusses how he decided to be a professional singer, revealing that he first considered a career in the Air Force. He also talks about how he became known for taking off his shirt, and why he is able to sing both opera and musical theater, when few singers can do both.

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