Board of Trustees
Alicia and her husband are long time residents of Shoreview. They have four daughters, one of whom is a Mounds View High School graduate, while the other three currently attend Mounds View Schools. Alicia is the owner of Wow Factor Exceptional Events which specializes in working with nonprofit organizations. Her special event and marketing expertise is a welcome addition to the MVSEF.
Heidi and her husband are long time residents of the Mounds View School District. They have three children, one of whom is an Irondale High School graduate, while the other two currently attend Mounds View Schools - Edgewood and Irondale. Heidi has served in a variety of volunteer and leadership roles within the schools, including Pinewood, Sunnyside and currently Edgewood Middle School. Heidi is also on staff at the Pike Lake Education Center where she works part time supporting the Early Childhood and Family Education program.
Kirsten is a retired Mounds View High School English teacher and licensed drug counselor who continues to work part time as a trainer at St. Mary's University. She has volunteered on various boards and is a member of her church council. Kirsten and her husband, along with their two children, are alumni of Mounds View High School. Kirsten and her husband live in Arden Hills. Kirsten serves as Secretary of the Foundation Board.
Jim DeMay is Director of State Government Relations in the Midwest for Pfizer Inc. Jim joined Pfizer after previously serving as Vice President for State Government Relations at U.S. Bank and Citigroup. He is an alumnus of Mounds View High School Class of 1983 where he was active in Boy’s Tennis, Student Government and Quiz Bowl. DeMay holds a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.A. from Hamline University. He is presently an Adjunct Professor at the Graduate School of Business at Hamline University. He and his wife, Channing Riggs, have two children who attend Mounds View Schools.
Shelley St. Marie Diffley
Shelley and her husband, Jim, have a long history and anticipate a positive future with the Mounds View School District. Both are proud graduates - Shelley from Mounds View High School and Jim from Irondale High School. Additionally, their three daughters currently attend Turtle Lake Elementary. As a real estate professional with Edina Realty, Shelley recognizes that families choose to reside and often purchase homes in the Mounds View School District due to the district’s exceptional reputation. Shelley’s personal commitment and professional experiences will strengthen the Foundation’s effort to educate and inspire our community about the value of our work.
Mindy is Director of Community Partnerships with Mounds View Schools. She has more than 20 years of experience working in the areas of community relations and public affairs. She has expertise in building strong partnerships and relationships between corporate and nonprofit organizations. Mindy and her husband live in Shoreview and have one daughter who graduated from Mounds View High School and twin boys still attending Mounds View.
Darin is the principal of Turtle Lake Elementary School. He began his career teaching at Snail Lake Elementary nearly 18 years ago then moved into administration, where for the past 4 years he has served as principal of Turtle Lake School. Darin has a deep understanding of the value and importance of philanthropy as he recently helped facilitate a successful capital campaign at Turtle Lake. As an administrator, Darin will bring an important perspective to the Foundation. He resides with his wife and two sons in Oakdale.
Michael is a financial consultant at Thrivent Financial. Prior to his career transition, he was a respected teacher at Mounds View High School who deeply valued his 10 years of teaching in the social studies department. Michael is a graduate of Gustavus Adolphus with a B.A. degree in Organizational Management and a Master’s degree in Education from the University of St. Thomas. He and his wife Katy live in Shoreview with their daughter Hattie.
Ruth joined the Board of Trustees upon completing her five-year tenure with the Mounds View Basketball Association during which she served as President. Ruth and her husband Scott are long time residents of the district, and have four children. Two of their children are Mounds View High School graduates, while the other two currently attend Mounds View High School.
Joann recently retired after a long and distinguished career in the education field. As the former Area Superintendent for St. Paul Public Schools and most recently the Executive Director of the Minnesota Association of Secondary Principals, Joann will bring a valuable perspective to the MVSEF. Joann has and continues to serve on a variety of nonprofit and civic boards. She and her husband Dan are long time New Brighton residents and have two children that graduated from Irondale High School.
Sanjay is the owner of SK & Associates, a management consulting firm started in 2013. He was the co-owner of GCI Systems in Shoreview and GNet Group in Roseville, both IT services companies that were acquired in the last 4 years. Sanjay served on the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors from 2007 - 2013 and chaired the Chamber's Education and Workforce Development Policy Committee from 2013 - 2014. Sanjay has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and an MBA, both from the University of Minnesota. Sanjay is a Mounds View HS alum and he and his wife Tricia live in North Oaks and have two boys, one of whom is a 10th grader at Mounds View.
Jen is an Associate Principal at Irondale High School. Jen has served in a variety of roles within the Mounds View School District over a 7 year period, including the position of Dean of the Area Learning Center. Notably, Jen’s recent involvement with the Early College Program at Irondale demonstrates her on-going commitment for positioning students in our district for post-secondary success. Jen will provide the Board of Trustees with a unique perspective as an administrator and former dean. Jen currently resides in Braham, MN and spends much of her free time renovating her 1910 farmstead.
Joanne and her husband, Chris, are both Mounds View High School graduates, as are all of their children. Their daughter has just moved back into the district with her husband and baby – MV Class of 2034 perhaps? Joanne was very involved in the schools her children attended, including a year as PTA President and Co-Chair of the Senior All-Night Party. She is a graduate of Bowdoin College and has run a home business for 25 years. She is currently the owner of Best Day Ever! Weddings + Events.
John’s connection to the Mounds View School district includes both his own experience and that of his family. John and his three siblings are all graduates of the district and he has four children who have attended and since graduated from Mounds View schools. John served as booster president of the Irondale High School Marching Band Program while his son Sam was a member. Interestingly, Sam’s love for music has been extended beyond high school as he is now in the Marine Corps Band while stationed in San Diego. As a local real estate agent, John recognizes that a strong public school system is critical to strengthening communities. John looks forward to serving as a Foundation Trustee and contributing to our work supporting the kids in our district. John and his wife Nancy reside in Arden Hills.
Erik Rasmussen is Senior Vice President responsible for Employee Benefits Underwriting for Voya Financial. He is also an Associate of the Society of Actuaries. Erik graduated from Mounds View High School in 1983 where he was the editor of the school newspaper, was a member of the National Honor Society and participated on the Boy’s Hockey, Tennis and Soccer teams. He holds a B.A. from the University of Minnesota in Mathematics with an Economics minor. He and his wife, Janelle, have two children, one who graduated in 2012 from Mounds View High School and one who will graduate from Mounds View High School in 2016.
Dave and his family each possess unique connections to the Mounds View School District. Dave and his two children are Mounds View High School graduates. Dave’s wife Marsha, a recent Mounds View School District retiree, began her career in 1990 as a paraprofessional and concluded her work in the district as a health specialist in early 2016. Dave’s service to the District included multiple terms on the Mounds View School Board as well as 621 Foundation, now known as the Mounds View Schools Education Foundation. Dave and Marsha currently reside in Vadnais Heights.
Jonathan is President of the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce. He serves as an Economic Development Commissioner in the City of Shoreview, is a founding Board Trustee of Partners for Classroom Technology and is engaged in various other non-profit board and committee roles. Jonathan is a 2012 graduate of Leadership Saint Paul and was recently selected as a 2013-14 Policy Fellow at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs. Jonathan earned his MBA and bachelor's degree from Bethel University. Jonathan and his wife Nicki, both Mounds View High School graduates, reside in Shoreview with their four boys; Jacob (Turtle Lake), Bradley (Turtle Lake), Joshua (Turtle Lake) and Steven. Jonathan serves as president of the Foundation Board.
Steve is an attorney with Felhaber Larson. He represents individuals and entities in complex business corporate and litigation matters, and has served on various nonprofit and professional boards. Steve brings a fresh perspective to the Board of Trustees and has high expectations for enhancing opportunities for students throughout the district. Steve grew up in the area and went to Snail Lake School. He and his wife Andrea reside in North Oaks and have two sons - who attended Mounds View High School. In his free time, Steve is an award winning historical fiction author: www.becominggeorgewashington.com
Superintendent, Mounds View Public Schools
Chris Lennox began his tenure as superintendent of Mounds View Public Schools in July of 2016. Lennox has been with the District since July 2015, serving as the assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction. He came to Mounds View from Bloomington Public Schools where he was assistant superintendent for three years. Lennox previously served Stillwater Public Schools as assistant superintendent of learning and instruction for four years and as the high school principal for five years. Prior to joining Stillwater, he was with South St. Paul Public Schools for eight years in various capacities.
Mounds View Public Schools School Board Liaison to the Foundation
Bob Helgeson is a Language Arts teacher in ISD 196 at Apple Valley High School. He has taught at Apple Valley High School for 24 years. His teaching experience includes Hastings High School, Marist Sisters' College-Woolwich, Sydney, NSW Australia, and the University of Iowa. Bob received his undergraduate degree from Wartburg College, Waverly, Iowa, a master's degree from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, and a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, Iowa City. Bob is committed to forging a close and meaningful link between the Mounds View Schools Education Foundation and the School District, one through which the Foundation is best able to apply its resources strategically in concert with District efforts to serve the needs of all learners.
Heather is an experienced development professional with twelve years of work in the philanthropic sector. Her experience includes the management of a corporate giving program, including both annual giving and capital campaigns, as well as working with major gift donors. In addition, her work has included facilitating board recruitment and development. Heather and her husband live in North Oaks and have a daughter that attends Chippewa Middle School.
Eric is an Irondale graduate (Sunnyside & Highview as well). In addition to his role with the Foundation, Eric is a Communications Technology Specialist for the Mounds View School District.