Anne Marie Gavel is retired from United HealthGroup – Optum where she worked as Senior Vice President. She feels extremely grateful for all that she has been given in life and is a member of VEAP’s board to serve others with the hopes they too can experience joy in their lives. Anne Marie enjoys spending time with loved ones, giving back to her community and facilitating groups to find solutions and effect change.
If given access to just one food on a desert island, Anne Marie would pick: peanut butter.
If Tom were stuck on a desert island with access to one food, he says he’d choose: “Sumo Oranges… never get tired of them!”
Becky Johnson works as a nonprofit financial consultant. She was compelled to serve on VEAP’s board to be connected to her community and contribute to a cause that she cares about. When not working, Becky finds joy in her family, friends and nature.
If she were stuck on a desert island with one food, Becky says: “It would be yogurt (with dark chocolate, granola, and blueberries!)”
Jennifer Siedow works at Yale Mechanical as the CFO. She joined VEAP’s board as a way to give back in a local organization. Jennifer’s children are older and she says she now has more time to pursue other interests. In her spare time, she enjoys golfing, reading and spending time on the river in her family’s boat.
If she were stuck on a desert island with unlimited access to one food, Jennifer would pick: “Nachos!!!”
If Ross were stuck on a desert island with access to one food, he says he’d pick: “Pizza… the food that works for breakfast, lunch and dinner!”
Brenda Bjorklund works at CenterPoint Energy as Associate General Counsel. She was drawn to VEAP because of its compelling and compassionate direct service in the community. She loves the partnership of hope and connectedness she sees in VEAP. In her personal life, Brenda says her family brings her great joy—every one of them!
If Brenda were stuck on a desert island with access to one food, she says she’d choose: “Watermelon!”
If he were stuck on a desert island with unlimited access to one food, Keith would choose: coffee.
Lisa Oster works as a Senior Internal Communications Leader at Jack Link’s, an American snack company. She was drawn to VEAP’s mission and the specific communities we benefit which compelled her to join our board. Lisa enjoys utilizing her talents as a communications professional to support the work VEAP advances. Lisa loves spending time with her husband and children who bring much joy to her life.
If stuck on a desert island with just one food choice, Lisa says: “There is never a day that pizza isn’t an amazing idea! I think if I were on a desert island and had pizza, it would make everything else about being on a desert island seem just a little more manageable!”
Bob Purvis is the retired owner of REPurvis and Associates. He joined VEAP’s board to become involved in helping keep our community strong. His involvement started with VEAP in 2008 working in the warehouse unloading trucks and stocking the pantry which he still does. He later became a member of the Board and eventually Board President during the process of determining to buy our current facility. He finds great joy in helping others improve their living conditions and lives. Bob believes education and a stable home life is critical not only for families but for communities as well.
If he had to choose one food on a desert island, Bob says: “It would probably have to be bananas.”
John Rimstad works for UnitedHealth Group, Population Health Solutions CFO (OptumHealth) as the Director of Finance. He serves on VEAP’s board as a way to have a direct impact in his own community. In his spare time, John enjoys fixing things that are not working properly, and bringing old items back to life.
If John were stuck on a desert island with access to one food, he says he’d choose: “Cereal and milk. Simple but hard to live without.”
Dane Taival is the Vice President, Digital & Energy Solutions at Trane. He joined VEAP’s board to make a difference in addressing access to food challenges in the community in which he works. He derives a great deal of joy in working toward what matters to him, which takes many forms in both his professional and personal life. Dane also enjoy sports as both a spectator and participant (“with limited capabilities!”).
If Dane were stuck on a desert island with unlimited access to one food, he says: “If forced to choose only one, it would be pizza.”
Amanda Wildeman works at Hennepin County as a Senior Social Worker. In the past, she had the privilege of working for VEAP as a Licensed Social Worker from 2009-2015, and was excited at the chance to reconnect with the agency and continue serving the community as a board member. She enjoys offering a Social Work and Social Justice perspective to the board to further its mission, vision, and commitment to serving this community. Amanda loves cooking, baking, and testing out new vegetarian recipes, visiting her family, and traveling to warm destinations. The favorite part of her day is when she gets to unwind with her husband and kitty at home.
If stuck on a desert island with unlimited access to one food, Amanda says she’s pick: “Thai red curry with tofu and lots of veggies! I would also happily eat a big bowl of spicy kimchi every day.”
Bree Williamson works with BMO Wealth Management as a Director | Private Wealth Advisor to families and organizations. She was compelled to join VEAP’s board for the ability to serve and make a meaningful difference in our community by providing for basic needs including food and housing. Bree’s passions include her husband and three children. She is also an avid runner.
If stuck on a desert island with just one food choice, Bree picks: yucca fries