Growing up on a ranch in Montana, I learned the value of hard work at an early age. After high school, I attended Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota and earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations with Minors in Russian Studies and Business Administration.
After college, I taught English in Russia and started assisting American families with adopting Russian orphans. It was an honor to work with many amazing families and help them navigate the emotional process of completing an adoption. This process taught me compassion and determination. Each adoption was as unique as the families I worked to create. Family is important to me – I am married with two sons. Parenting has broadened my perspective and focused my energy on the next generation. It is imperative that we educate and prepare our children for an ever-changing world.
From 2014 to 2023, I served on a Board of Directors for a local swim team that has a similar governance model to the Minnetonka School District. Having prior experience on a Board has taught me that one vote can only go so far; it is important to utilize collaboration and compromise to make progress on decisions. I cultivated rapport and respect with a broad range of people and was able to help guide the organization through some challenging times.
In the last 2 years, I have attended approximately 90% of the Minnetonka School Board meetings, including study sessions, goal setting sessions, School Board vacancy interviews, and the Superintendent search. Observing first hand the workings of the Board I have learned about the policies, procedures and goals set for our District. At times I was the only non-Administration member in the audience. To better understand the issues facing education in general, I also attended School Board Meetings in some surrounding Districts.
I have volunteered in the District with the MMW PTO, Minnetonka High School Booster Store, the Minnetonka District Teaching and Learning Advisory Committee, and CASE (Community Action for Student Education). Volunteering has provided a great opportunity to get to know other parents, teachers, and administrators.