LTC Graduate Cory Jobe Appointed as Director of the Illinois Office of Tourism
Lincoln Trail College alumnus Cory Jobe says he got his start in politics while he was at LTC. “I might have cut my teeth in politics being student government president. It helped prepare me as I’ve gone on to play a pretty active role in local and state politics.”
Governor Bruce Rauner appointed Jobe as the Director of the Illinois Office of Tourism in January. He also serves on the Springfield City Council as the alderman of the city’s 6th Ward.
Looking back, Jobe believes that his time at LTC really helped prepare him for his future. “I think that’s where I found a lot of my leadership qualities. I learned a lot about myself during those two years. I think it did prepare me to move to that next step, to broaden my outreach in terms of friendships and building more character qualities about myself.”
Jobe says after growing up in Oblong, Ill., he wanted to stay close to home. At the time, he didn’t feel he was ready to move. He came to Lincoln Trail College on a golf scholarship and remains an avid golfer.
Jobe got his start in state politics working with Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka in 1997. He served as the Director of Economic Development in the Treasurer’s Office from 1997 to 2006. While at the treasurer’s office, he was instrumental in developing Experience Illinois, a first-of-its-kind low interest loan program, which funded more than $35 million in various state projects over three years, such as the revitalization of downtown business districts, restoring historical buildings and lodging facilities, establishing sporting venues, and developing wineries and orchards.
From 2006 to 2010, Jobe served as leader of the Peoples Economic Development Corporation. Jobe was reunited with Topinka in 2011 when he became the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Illinois Office of the Comptroller, where he served until he was appointed as the Director of the Illinois Office of Tourism.
Jobe is now responsible for leading the state’s tourism industry marketing and development efforts.
“I’m excited to lead an industry that’s an economic engine all across the state. It’s an exciting time to be in Illinois. We’re setting record numbers in terms of domestic visitors and international guests to our state. Our hotel-motel tax numbers are up for the eighth straight quarter across the state, so it’s really exciting to lead an industry that is vitally important to the state’s overall economy.”
Jobe does look back fondly at his experience at Lincoln Trail College and sees the importance of the community college system.
“It was just a unique, tremendous learning opportunity. I’ve always said this about community colleges; I think they’re really the backbone of our education system. I think it’s a quality education system that’s needed and helps students prepare themselves for the future and that’s what Lincoln Trail did for me.”