Norris University Center
Thomas brings skills
Richard R. (Rick) Thomas is the new director of Norris University Center.
Richard R. Thomas
Thomas, who had served as director of student centers at DePaul University since
2001, began his duties Aug. 18. He succeeds William Johnston who retired after
nine years as director.
He will be responsible for leadership and general management of the center’s
functions, services and programs, including event planning and production; student
activities; facility services and management; marketing; financial management;
information technology; food services, bookstores and other contracted services;
and human resources management.
Thomas will be a member of the senior leadership team of the Division of Student
At DePaul, Thomas was responsible for four student center/conference facilities
that accommodated more than 4,000 events and programs annually. He managed contracted
food service vendors on three campuses and oversaw beverage and snack vending
services for six DePaul campuses.
He also managed a residential meal plan program for 2,500 campus residents, had
responsibility for Barat campus food operations and oversaw the opening of the
Lincoln Park Student Center.
Prior to DePaul, Thomas had served as director of the Hermann Union and student
activities at Illinois Institute of Technology since 1996. He was responsible
for a union facility that accommodates events and houses an information desk,
convenience store, recreation center with bowling alley, food court, faculty
club, campus pub, meeting rooms and an auditorium. He also was responsible for
contracted food service vendors, maintenance staff, private vendors and custodial