Carl Adamek graduated from the University of North Dakota with a degree in mathematics. Over the years Carl has held a number of leadership roles in insurance companies and brokers/third party administrators supporting member benefit programs for national associations. He is currently senior vice president of account management for AGIA Affinity, a Santa Barbara, CA-based broker/administrator.
Carl has enjoyed supporting the Minnetonka community through his past engagements as a member of the Minnetonka Police Advisory Committee and the Minnetonka Public Schools Foundation board of trustees. He enjoys golf and travel.
Jeff Buchanan has been an entrepreneur, CEO, and board member with a career in retail, consumer products, and government industries. Jeff founded J.L. Buchanan in 1986, growing his sales, marketing, and business consulting business over the years. Jeff is passionate about being in tune with the customer and demonstrating empathy to ensure not only that their needs be met, but that expectations are exceeded.
Jeff loves learning. He holds an MS in counseling from the University of Tennessee, a BS in psychology from St. Olaf College, and he is enrolled in the Master's in Leadership Program at Augsburg University. He currently serves as chair of the planning commission for the City of Wayzata and has 10 years of experience on the board of the Minneapolis Golf Club.
Anne Colombo spent 30 years in the human resources field, most recently serving as senior HR director for talent management for Medtronic Corporation. In this role, Anne led talent management practices, with a focus on advancing diversity and organizational health. She focused on building strong pipelines of diverse global talent and integrating diversity across all talent practices.
Anne has an MA degree in industrial relations and a BS in business administration, both from the University of Minnesota.
Mary Deschamp was born and raised in South Dakota and taught In Rapid City for seven years.
For the past 39 years, she has lived and worked overseas for the Department of Defense Educational Activity. She taught US military-connected K-12 students on bases in Korea, Germany, Portugal, Italy, Cuba, and Japan, teaching K-6 classroom curriculum, K-12 art, K-12 gifted/talented, and serving as K-12 teacher-librarian.
Mary attended Black Hills State University, where she participated in The Northern Plains Indian Teacher Corps Program and received both her BS and MS degrees in elementary education. Throughout her career, Mary has earned graduate credits from several colleges. She earned a BS in art education at the University of Minnesota.
Susan Gretz has been an attorney since 2002 for The Nature Conservancy, where she manages litigation and real estate transactions for a large conservation organization. Prior to that, she worked for the Minnesota Supreme Court and the Minnesota Attorney General’s office. She attended the University of Minnesota (political science) and University of California at Berkeley (law).
Susan lives in St. Paul with her husband Mike and three cats. Outside of work, she enjoys getting outside, playing some tennis or cross-country skiing, and plant-based food.
Diane Hageman has more than 30 years of experience working in communications, marketing, and project management. For the past three years, she has been serving as a communications consultant. Her client list also includes health care organizations, schools, foundations, and social service agencies in central Minnesota. Previous roles include serving in a variety of communications/marketing positions for the College of Saint Benedict, CentraCare Health, and as an independent consultant for small businesses and nonprofits.
Diane has extensive experience on many local and regional boards including the Central Minnesota United Way Board of Directors, St. Benedict’s Senior Community, St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce, and the YMCA. Currently, she is a member of the Rotary Club and the Chamber of Commerce.
She has been married to John Stemper for more than 34 years and has two adult children and one grandson.
Lizz Levang is a native Minnesotan born and raised in International Falls. Lizz has worked in all sectors of the economy, including 25 years as a small business owner. She is the author of several books on grief and multiple journal articles on perinatal loss. Lizz holds a PhD in the behavioral sciences and is grateful for the transformational impact that graduate school provided.
Volunteerism has great meaning for Lizz as “building community” was a value she learned from the many examples of her immigrant grandparents and parents.
Elizabeth Lorentz is a brand management specialist. She has worked for Midwest-CBK, a wholesale gift and home décor company, for the past 34 years. As the VP of brand and product development, she directs the Midwest Gift brand and the team’s new product development, international sourcing, and marketing activities. Elizabeth graduated from St. Catherine’s University with a BA in communications and an MA in organizational leadership.
Elizabeth and her husband live in Saint Paul, Minnesota. They enjoy a variety of volunteer and cultural activities. She is an Emmaus listening minster, participates in the Families Moving Forward program, and she and her husband are marriage mentors for the Basilica. They have two adult children. Their son graduated from Augsburg College and works in the financial services industry in Minneapolis. Their daughter is finishing her PhD in biomedical engineering at the University of Pittsburgh. Their family loves traveling, biking, hiking, and music.
Lisa A. Mattson
Lisa A. Mattson has been a part of the University of Minnesota community for more than 30 years. Her daughter graduated from the Carlson School of Business and her son is currently a student in the College of Science and Engineering. She spent time on campus as an undergraduate student focused on business and marketing education. Lisa and her husband live in Shoreview, MN.
Since 1997, she has managed the business operations at Ofstead & Associates, Inc., a medical research company. During that time, she has been instrumental in both increasing the size of the business and diversifying the client base, which now includes a variety of healthcare providers, medical device manufacturers, and pharmaceutical companies. She earned her MBA in marketing management at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.
In addition, Lisa is one of the founding partners of The Power of 100 Women Who Care – Twin Cities chapter which is a grassroots philanthropy organization. She has also served on a variety of community and nonprofit boards.
Sarah Meek, born and raised in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, migrated to the Twin Cities following graduation from St. Olaf College and never looked back. She eventually met her husband and had two children, settling north of Stillwater in rural May Township, later moving to Mahtomedi.
After St. Olaf, Sarah attended the University of Minnesota for summer school, exploring business, eventually landing a technical sales position with 3M. She attained her MBA in marketing from the University of St. Thomas while working full time. She held a variety of sales and marketing leadership positions with 3M, Imation and Anderson Windows – all in B-to-B industrial markets. After a 30-year career, Sarah chose to stay home during her children’s teenage years, pouring energy into family, aging parents, gardening and extensive volunteer roles, while serving on three different nonprofit boards.
Karla Myres lives near Clear Lake, Minnesota with her husband Brian. They have three sons. Grant (23) is pursuing a PhD in chemistry at University of Utah, Kevin (20) is in a post-high school transition program, and David (17) is starting his junior year in high school. Karla was born the youngest of 8 and raised on a farm near Carlos, Minnesota. She earned a BS degree in personnel services - administration and an MS degree in guidance and counseling from Minnesota State University-Moorhead. Her higher education career specialized in leadership development with student activities and student union administration.
Karla has served with non-profit organizations as a small group facilitator, mentor, leader, and board of director member. She is active in her faith community and volunteers time to those in need of support. In her leisure she enjoys, travel, hiking, bicycling, yoga, reading, baking (bread, pie and Scandinavian treats) and being at their cabin on Leech Lake.
Sheila Peyraud recently retired from Donaldson Company (NYSE: DCI) where she spent her entire professional career. Her last role at Donaldson was that of vice president & chief technical officer. In this role, she led the global research and development function including global test laboratory management; modeling, simulation, and CAE development; and advanced product/technology development; including the process development related to new technology.
Prior to the CTO role, Sheila held various global general management roles. The most recent of these roles was that of the global aerospace and defense general manager, with accountability for businesses located in Paris; St. Louis, MO; Valencia, CA; and Minneapolis.
She attended the University of New Mexico as an undergraduate and the University of St. Thomas for grad school.
Janet Kidd Stewart
Janet Kidd Stewart is a veteran business journalist and storyteller. She writes a long-running, nationally syndicated retirement column, The Journey, for Tribune Content Agency. Her two children are attending the University of Minnesota and the University of Indiana, and she is relocating from Wisconsin to downtown Minneapolis to begin this new chapter. She is writing a personal finance book with a current working title "Rich & Strange: Finding Work and Wealth After Sudden Loss."
In addition to her journalism career, she has actively volunteered with several organizations, including co-chairing an $11+ million capital campaign to expand a local YMCA.
Andy Taylor wound up a medical career in July 2018. He practiced radiology in an academic setting at several institutions, with the last 5 years at UMN. In this academic career, he had the honor of providing medical care to people, but also teaching and being taught by residents, medical students, fellows, and other faculty. These components of practice led to the joy of watching people grow and develop, the satisfaction of doing research, and the pleasure of writing/reviewing manuscripts. Andy has an MD degree from Northwestern University and a BA degree from Cornell College.
Vanessa Tennyson left her position of 32 years as chief operating officer of a large consulting engineering firm to start her own firm, Operations Expertise & Management, where she consults about the most difficult aspect to any business environment: the human condition.
Vanessa’s tagline is “Capitalize Your Humanity.” Her experience reaffirms that people have very different needs, talents, and aspirations, and harnessing human capital by treating employees as people first and employees second is the key to success.
As a transgender woman, Vanessa experienced a rare perspective, having been an employee, a manager, an executive and an owner in both male and female gender roles. Understanding that this would be a difficult experience, her transition energized her in a manner that was completely unexpected. She now views commerce, whether academic, public or private, as the greatest opportunity today to make a positive impact on society, leading the way in human relations. As a certified domestic and sexual violence advocate, she has seen the most vulnerable side of people, and after every advocacy interaction, she feels even more grateful.
Bill Warner found a home in small-town Wisconsin following life and work stints in New York, Columbus, Chicago, Seattle, and Minneapolis. He has lived in River Falls for the past 29 years, assisting business development projects for economic development and construction employers, and spending the past four years as a stay-at-home dad.
Bill continues to search for balance between business progress, social justice, interpersonal relations, and public management, building on degrees from Oberlin College and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, with additional work experience in the legislative, Federal agency, and small business finance arenas.