A billboard at 111th Street and Western Avenue gave Beverly resident and Resurrection University President Dr. Therese Scanlan quite a surprise on Aug. 13.
Located only blocks from her home, the billboard honored Scanlan and promoted the university’s “It’s Amazing to be Needed” marketing campaign, which has dozens of billboards featuring university students, staff and faculty placed throughout Chicago.
“I walked into O’Rourke’s Office for what I thought was just to meet a couple colleagues after work,” said Scanlan, “but it turned into a ton of my family and friends yelling ‘Surprise!’ They then led me outside for the unveiling, making it all the more special.”
Resurrection University is a private, Catholic university that offers a college of nursing and a college of health sciences.
Scanlan has two sons, both of whom attended Mt. Carmel High School and are now in college. She is the eldest of five children and has lived in the Beverly area since she was 3. Today, approximately 30 of her family members live in Beverly, and both of her parents work as educators in the area.
Scanlan described her billboard as larger than life.
“I was quite shocked,” she said. “People were texting me that night and posting comments on my Facebook page, and even just last night while out to dinner at Horse Thief Hollow, a woman came up to me and said she saw it.”
Scanlan earned her doctorate in higher education and organizational change from Benedictine University. She received a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from St. Xavier University.
Scanlan was initially hired as director of business and financial affairs at Resurrection University in 2006. She then was promoted to chief financial officer. On June 16, 2016, the Resurrection University Board of Directors appointed her as president.
In 2010, the university embarked upon a change-of-control process to become an independent organization from the non-profit parent health system: an involved, detailed and lengthy process. During this conversion, Scanlan was instrumental in leading the contractual, financial, governance and regulatory aspects of the process.
In addition, the university was also planning for construction and relocation from Oak Park to Chicago. Scanlan also led these initiatives.
In December 2012, the university moved to its new location ahead of schedule, where it continues to grow inside the walls of Presence St. Elizabeth Hospital, 1431 N. Claremont Ave., in Chicago.
Scanlan’s vision for the university continued into 2016 with the development of a new 14-room, state-of-the-art Inter-Professional Education Simulation Learning Center, which replaced the one-room center that was built in 2012. During Scanlan’s tenure as president, enrollment, operating budget and revenue have doubled at Resurrection University.
Scanlan expressed pride in Resurrection University and the billboard.
“I’m so proud to be part of our ‘It’s Amazing to be Needed’ marketing campaign, which features real students, faculty and alumni,” she said. “I knew that my photos were being used internally at Resurrection University, but I had no idea that my team was planning to put me on a billboard—and in my neighborhood!”