Our Mission & Leadership

SHIELD Illinois is a nonprofit unit of the University of Illinois System dedicated to deploying the U of I-developed saliva-based COVID-19 test across Illinois.​

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Ron Watkins

Managing Director

Rhiannon Clifton

Senior Director of Testing Operations and Client Integration

Leadership

Our

Andrew Greta

Senior Director of Finance and Strategy

Beth Heller

Senior Director of External Relations

Yoni Merid

Senior Director of Science

Len Musielak

Senior Director of Business Operations

Jacqueline Suriano

Director of Organizational Development

Matt Rivers

Director of Testing Operations and Client Integration

David Crow

Director of Supply Chain and Logistics

AJ Lavender

Director of Project Management

Jamie Fenbert

Director of Strategic Projects

Harendra Chahar

Director of Southern Illinois Laboratory Operations

Beth Gilmore

Director of External Relations

Natalie Lubbers

Associate Director of Northern Illinois Laboratory Operations

Todd Morrow

Associate Director of Support and Technology Integration

Ben Taylor

Associate Director of Marketing and Communications

Nate Guido

Assistant Director of Information Technology, Labs

Maria Messmacher

Assistant Director of Relationship Management

Beth Gilmore

Director of External Relations

Natalie Lubbers

Associate Director of Northern Laboratories

Todd Morrow

Associate Director of Northern Laboratories

Ben Taylor

Associate Director of Marketing and Communications

Frequently Asked Questions

About SHIELD Illinois

SHIELD Illinois is a COVID-19 screening testing program and infrastructure designed to help safely open schools, protect workplaces, and save lives. This specific test was designed by University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign researchers and was supported by the university’s leadership team. The testing and strategy created by these individuals was named SHIELD. Our mission as a land-grant institution is to use our capabilities and resources for the public good by deploying this method of targeting, testing, and informing beyond the U of I System to the entire state of Illinois.

The test is self-administered and non-invasive. After checking in with a collection site staff member, you will receive a vial to deposit a small amount of saliva into. Then, you place the vial in a collection rack and leave the collection site.

You should not eat, drink or put anything in your mouth one hour before taking the  salvia-based test. This includes smoking, drinking, chewing gum, using mouth wash, etc.

Results are known within 24 hours from the time a sample is received in one of our labs.

GET TESTED

Find a nearby testing location

Find a community testing site where anyone can get a free SHIELD Illinois COVID-19 test.

Contact Us

For more information, contact us at shieldillinois@uillinois.edu

shieldillinois@uillinois.edu