"I hired Dr. Thomas as a provost and vice president of academic affairs at Western Illinois University, where he brought outstanding programs such as nursing and engineering."

"As president, Dr. Thomas saw Western through its most difficult budgetary and enrollment times with almost no support from the state of Illinois. He kept the university strong and functioning even in the midst of these very difficult times."

"Dr. Jack Thomas is a leader who is not afraid to face challenges head on and has demonstrated grace under pressure in challenging times. I congratulate Central State University for recognizing the talent and leadership that Dr. Thomas can provide to lead their University.

Central State University is the recipient of one of the most respected and intelligent higher education leaders in the nation. Dr. Thomas' commitment and compassion to student success is second to none. I am excited for the Central State University community. With Dr. Thomas at the helm, the sky is the limit. From the bottom of my heart, congratulations to all!"

"Central State University is very fortunate to have attracted one of the most admired thought leaders in American Higher Education to become its next president. Over the past three decades, Dr. Thomas has demonstrated both his strong leadership skills and his commitment to supporting students. The board has made a wise decision, and the students will be the beneficiaries."