Carterville Chamber Spotlight of the week for January 22, 2024 - Jacob Rendleman


The Chamber Business Spotlight of the Week for Januar 22, 2024 is Jacob "Jake" Rendleman!


CARTERVILLE — There’s always been something special about Jacob “Jake” Rendleman. His peers say it’s something old-fashioned.

Nobody works harder than Jake Rendleman,” said Jeffrey Obrzut, past CEO of the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB). “If you want to know what makes Jake special it’s his old-fashioned dedication to hard work. No matter what he does, he puts his all into it.” 

Rendleman’s dedication and hard work has benefited a number of organizations including the ICCB, the John A. Logan College Board of Trustees, and the Carterville Chamber to name a few. 

When Rendleman stepped down from the ICCB after 12 years of service, it sent shockwaves throughout the state. 

“An ICCB without Jake Rendleman? He’s made such great contributions to the state for so long now, who could have imagined this?,” said Obrzut, who retired from the ICCB in 2013 after more than a decade as its CEO. “Jake was a major contributor, make no mistake about it. I can think of no board member who worked harder.” 

Obrzut added, “Jake represented the community college system well. When he was speaking, you knew he was speaking for the entire state, but you also knew he cared deeply for colleges in Southern Illinois and made a strong voice for those colleges to get their share of state resources.” 

The Illinois Community College Board consists of eleven members throughout the state appointed by the governor and confirmed by the senate for six-year terms. Rendleman served two terms.

During the holiday season, Obrzut noted, Rendleman brought peaches and apples from Southern Illinois to Springfield for ICCB employees. “No one is ever going to forget that,” Obrzut said. “That’s something you couldn’t wait for Jake to arrive with.”

Glenn Poshard now serves with Rendleman on the John A. Logan College Board of Trustees. Poshard, a retired congressman and state senator, knows the commitment it takes to serve on a statewide board.

“The miles you drive and the hours you spend — especially in Jake’s case where he served 12 years — it’s impossible to calculate all that goes into it,” Poshard said. “I don’t believe there is anyone in this state who doesn’t realize how great of a champion Jake has been for the community college system, how hard he has fought, and how much he has given.” 

Shannon Woodworth ran the PR and marketing department at John A. Logan College for a number of years while Rendleman was a member of the College’s board of trustees. “Jake never let up on how important it is to keep community colleges affordable,” Woodworth said. “He was always in the ears of those at the governor’s level to provide as much funding as possible to benefit students. People throughout this state know Jake Rendleman and they know what he has stood for. He stood for hard work and dedication to that of which he believed in so dearly.”

While Rendleman continues to serve on the John A. Logan College Board of Trustees he should also be recognized for being a past president of the Illinois Community College Trustees Association. He has also been presented with numerous awards for his service including the Ray Harstein Trustee Achievement Award, a major award within the Illinois community college system.

Beginning in 1966, Jake taught eighth-grade science for 28 years. He founded the school’s science fair which continues today. He was nominated for a national teaching award and was in the top 25 across the nation. He is loved and revered by thousands of his students who remember him as the kind and compassionate Mr. Rendleman.