Lee Strom, President & CEO
Lee assumed the role in October of 2017, following nearly a decade of service in Washington D.C., where he served as the CEO and Chairman of the Board of the Farm Credit Administration. FCA regulates the $250 billion national network of Farm Credit System institutions and Farmer Mac which provide credit and financial services to the nation’s agriculture and agribusiness sectors. He also served as chair of the $3.5 billion Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation. Lee has served as an agriculture advisor for the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s Advisory Board on Agriculture, Labor, and Small Business, and served in numerous other leadership capacities within the agriculture and finance sectors. In 2011, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Northern Illinois University for his efforts in protecting and managing the assets of the agriculture industry. Lee and his wife reside on a farm in Kane County, Illinois where his ancestors settled in the late
Todd Lowery, Program Director
In the position of P
Todd graduated from Illinois State University in 1992 with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Public Relations and a Minor in Political Science. He served as a Congressional Aide for Congressman Thomas Ewing for four years before starting a career in communications at radio stations in central Illinois. Prior to joining the IALF, Todd served as the Government and Public Affairs Manager with the McLean County Chamber of Commerce in Bloomington, Illinois
Debi Thurow, Development Director
As Development Director, Debi coordinates the fundraising and operational aspects of the IALF.
For more than 30 years prior to joining the IALF, Debi owned her own retail floral and gift shop. She has served on the board of the Illinois State Florist Association as President, Vice President, Treasurer, and financial manager. She was named to the Illinois State Florist Hall of Fame in 2005. She has served her community on the board of the Macomb Chamber of Commerce, Chamber Ambassador Committee, and as a member of the Western Illinois University Athletic board.
Nicole Solberg, Alumni Director
In the position of Administrative Assistant Nicole contributes to the development and execution of the foundation’s educational seminars, alumni relations, and the overall functions of the office.
Nicole came to Bloomington from Belvidere, IL in 2003 to attend Illinois State University. She received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in English in 2008 and a Master’s of Science degree in Professional Writing and Rhetoric in 2013. Prior to joining the IALF staff, Nicole spent seven years as a stay at home mom to her two young sons. Nicole is new to the agriculture industry, but her grandfather, father-in-law, and husband all have careers in ag. When she’s not working, Nicole loves spending time with her family, being outdoors, and cheering on the Cubs.