Eastwood retires after 30 years of service at college
Candy Eastwood, the director of the Illinois Small Business Development Center at Shawnee Community College near Ullin, has retired after 30 years of service.
Eastwood, of Pulaski, is a graduate of Shawnee Community College and Southern Illinois University. She graduated from SIU with magna cum laude honors.
Shawnee Community College officials noted that Eastwood has dedicated her career to serving the people of Southern Illinois. During her career in the Small Business Development Office over the past 30 years, Eastwood has served in several positions and was named director of the program in 2017.
Under Eastwood’s leadership, the program has served more than 2,500 clients, assisted with 436 business startups in the local community, helped with 100 business expansions, assisted in retaining or creating approximately 1,155 and assisted with procuring over $4 million for the funding of small business development in the area.
The success that Eastwood has seen in small business development has led to her being recognized among her peers as an outstanding achiever in her field.
Most recently, Eastwood was nominated and selected as the 2017 Illinois State Star Award winner.
The award is given annually by the American Small Business Center to SBDC employees who exhibit exemplary performance in their field.
During a recent retirement event, Eastwood spoke fondly of the time she has spent at Shawnee Community College.
She gave special thanks to her staff, coworkers, former president of Shawnee Dr. Jack Hill and current president Dr. Peggy Bradford for their support.
Eastwood said she is looking forward to having time to spend with her husband and family including her daughter Ashley Dexter and her grandchildren Addison, 5, and Easton, 8 months.
In speaking about Ms. Eastwood’s retirement Shawnee Community College president Dr. Peggy Bradford said: “We are so appreciative of the excellence with which Candy has served our community and our college for the past 30 years.
“The diligence with which she has served has left a lasting impression on us all and certainly left big shoes to fill.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to have worked with her and wish her well in her retirement.”
Shawnee Community College faculty and staff members have voiced their heartfelt gratitude to Eastwood for her 30 years of service.