Board members are visible and vocal ambassadors. The most effective ones demonstrate a commitment to the organization and to its overall goals, which in our case include environmental stewardship, promoting park-friendly policies, preserving open spaces in our urban community and providing a vehicle for citizen engagement.
That’s why we are turning to you — our members — to help us find potential board members for Friends of the Parks and Trails or to step forward yourself.
- Have ideas for people who would add depth and diversity to the board — in age, gender identity, ethnicity, skill set, geographic location in the city or county?
- Would you like to talk over what the position entails?
- Contact Amy Gage, executive director, at 612-381-4110 (mobile) or email@example.com.
We have added five board members to our small but growing roster since fall 2022. We are pleased and proud to introduce:
- Reier Erickson, a native of International Falls and the newly elected vice president of our board, left Minnesota for adventures in Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Monrovia, Liberia. He and his wife and two children recently moved to the Payne-Phalen neighborhood of St. Paul from Saint Albans, Vermont, where Reier served as a school board director and a justice of the peace and was on several nonprofit boards.
- Clara James, a resident of Highland Park, enjoys riding a fat-tire bike and is a maps and data enthusiast. She is an instructor of information technology at Minneapolis College and already has shown herself to be a valuable advisor in bringing our website up to date.
- Kathy Sidles is a master naturalist and a retired electrical engineer who lives near Lake Phalen. Keeping our parks free of trash and invasive species, documenting the wildlife and beauty of the neglected Pig’s Eye Regional Park and advocating to keep the Metro Transit Purple Line off the Bruce Vento Regional Trail are her particular passions. Saint Paul Parks Conservancy featured Kathy in a “Volunteer Spotlight” in March 2022.
- Leslie Tunstall, our newest board member, moved to the east side of St. Paul in 2016 after spending most of her life on the East Coast. A graduate of Grinnell College, she had a 22-year career in the former Bell System, principally in installation, management of regulatory affairs, filing tariff changes, service costs analysis and market research. She was an avid hiker and trail walker during those years and a supporter of the New York/New Jersey Appalachian Trail Conference. Leslie volunteers as a literacy tutor at Dayton’s Bluff Elementary School.
- Ashley Ward, who also lives near Battle Creek, moved to Minnesota from North Carolina in 2018. She teaches blind and visually impaired children from birth up to age 21 in the Saint Paul Public Schools and aims to plan more activities for young people in the parks. She and her husband, Saint Paul School Board member Uriah Ward, recently had their first child, Orren.
Please be in touch if you have ideas for additional board members or would like to discuss a position for yourself. We welcome the conversation!