Staff Changes at the Turner Center

Staff Changes at the Turner Center

By Jim Foley, Director, Turner Center Operations, Illinois SBDC International Trade Center


There have been some significant staff changes recently. Ken Klotz, previously Director of Programs, continues at Bradley University, but recently transitioned to a teaching position with the Foster College of Business where he will teach entrepreneurship and business courses.  He continues to serve as Managing Director of the Turner School of Entrepreneurship and Innovation.  Ken was with the Turner Center for over fifteen years and was an outstanding advocate for the center in the wider Peoria community.  We are glad he’s only one building away and will continue working with our clients through our student projects.

Greg Faulkner, previously Director of the Procurement and Technical Assistance Center (PTAC), left November 30th as his family is moving back to the East Coast.  Greg was with the PTAC program for over two years and took the program to even greater success.  He helped many companies receive their first government contract and others to get certified as a woman-, minority-, veteran-, or disabled-owned company.  We wish Greg the best on his next adventure!

Jennie Hale has been at Bradley for almost 35 years, and with the Turner Center for 25 of those years.  So it was a logical step to promote her to the position of Director of Programs and Budget.  She will continue to manage the overall office operations but will have an increased role in marketing, promotion, training events, student projects, and grant administration.  Jennie is well known to many of our clients, Bradley University faculty and staff, and community leaders.  Her years of experience will greatly support the Turner Center and our mission.  Jennie can be contacted at or (309) 677-4321.

Elizabeth Ahern was recently named Director of the Peoria U.S. Export Assistance Center with the U.S. Department of Commerce. Though not an employee of the Turner Center, we host the Export Assistance Center in our offices.  Elizabeth replaces Shari Stout who was promoted to the U.S. Foreign Commercial Service and will soon assume a position in Ankara, Turkey.  Elizabeth brings with her many years of private international trade experience.


As Director, Elizabeth is the primary point of contact for implementing the programs and policies of the U.S. Commercial Service for Central and Southern Illinois. The Commercial Service, as part of the International Trade Administration and the U.S. Department of Commerce, offers export help and global assistance through trade counseling, business matchmaking, market intelligence and commercial diplomacy. The Turner Center staff had previously worked with Elizabeth as she was with the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in the International Trade Center in Central IL since 2011.  Elizabeth has over 20 years of international experience, spanning the private sector, academia, and public service.  She has extensive private sector experience working as an international sales development manager, account executive, and international credit manager. She can be contacted at (309) 671-7815 or