Prairie Creek's school board for 2015-16
Jodi Doeden (parent)
I am interested in serving on the board in order to take a more active role in the Prairie Creek Community School and surrounding community. My family includes myself, husband Jami along with two daughters, our 13 year old Labrador Sady, a PCCS auction rabbit named Midnight, hamster named Jill along with a number of fish. We moved to Northfield eight years ago in order to put down roots in a community and feel thankful we chose Northfield. We have two daughters currently enrolled in PCCS. Professionally my background is in human resources. Like most PCCS parents we feel fortunate our daughters have the opportunity to explore and grow within such a supportive environment. After recently attending the PCCS book launch I better appreciate the rich history of the school and its deep commitment to progressive education. If elected, I will welcome the opportunity to nurture its overall health as an organization and community.
Roz Eaton (community member)
I’m pleased with the school's approach to educating our two Prairie Creek students, and I'm warmed by the staff's thoughtfulness and engagement. My own career has been in higher education. I specifically studied college student development and institutional planning, policy, and leadership. My professional focus is on working with college students as they develop and grow through their college experiences, and I currently serve as an associate dean at St. Olaf College in Northfield. I have a lot to learn about administering K-12 education and am hopeful that my perspective will prove useful to the board. I’m also active with the Northfield Enterprise Center and Women In Action, and with planning the fall festival for Friends of Way Park in Northfield.
Kelsey Fitschen-Hemmah (teacher)
I came to Prairie Creek Community School in 2009 as a paraprofessional and am currently in the role of special education teacher. I received a B.S. in Political Science and International Studies for the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and will have completed a M.S. in Special Education in fall of 2012. I value the philosophy of Prairie Creek and the learning environment that allows all children to explore and learn through a variety of methods. I currently serves on the policy committee, where I assists in developing policies for the school. I looks forward to learning more about school governance and supporting the school by serving on the board.
Nancy Dennis (teacher)
I landed my first teaching job here at Prairie Creek when it became a public charter school in 2002. Ask me the story some time. I am thus “homegrown” to Prairie Creek’s progressive approach to education and credit my wonderful colleagues with continually challenging me to become a better teacher. I entered the profession as a second career after receiving my Masters in Education from UW- River Falls. I deeply love this school and am honored to serve as a board member once again.
I began as a K/1 teacher for 7 years and moved to teaching grades 2/3 when the school expanded in 2009. Prairie Creek has expanded my understanding and passion for the Arts in education and I currently lead the Arts Study Group. My husband and I live just outside Northfield and have two daughters, one grown and one almost there. Our younger daughter was fortunate to have the chance to attend Prairie Creek. The arboretum is my favorite place in Northfield as I enjoy walking, running and cross-country skiing. I am a big fan of board games and reading. Road trips and camping in the BWCA are always a part of my summers.
Lisa Percy (paremt)
I have two children at PCCS. I earned my degree in teaching secondary education (6-12) and spent 10 years teaching in rural, urban, public and private schools in a few different states. I place a high priority on education for children. I am a strong community organizer as witnessed in my work with the PCCS auction, as PCCS lunch volunteer coordinator and this current year as chair of a parent volunteer community known as Community Connections. I believe in strong communities, strong neighborhoods and strong schools. I have regularly attend PCCS school board meetings in order to have a better understanding of the school operations and communications.
Dan Rustad (parent)
My wife Anna Lisa and I are strong supporters of the progressive education model Prairie Creek offers. With one child just finishing his time at Prairie Creek, one in the middle of it, and one soon to begin, we appreciate how the Prairie Creek community has helped our kids grow creatively, intellectually, and socially.
I am a graduate of St. Olaf and have worked in external relations and development at Carleton College since 2002. Outside of work, I have been involved with St. Olaf in various volunteer roles and also co-founded and co-produce the 411 Concert Series at the Northfield Arts Guild. I grew up in Rochester, MN and have lived with my family in Northfield since 2004.
Bonnie Jean Flom (community member)
I'm honored to have the opportunity to serve as the community member on Prairie Creek’s board. My professional experience includes 14 years of teaching at the elementary level and 17 years in elementary school administration. For the past decade, I’ve worked as an independent educational consultant, primarily with charter schools. I had the privilege of working as a consultant with the Prairie Creek board as the transition from private school to public charter school was achieved in 2002. I also served as the Charter School Liaison for Hamline University in St. Paul for seven years. I’ve enjoyed a long and positive association with Prairie Creek and I am delighted to have the opportunity to serve on the board of this outstanding school.
Spike Willis (parent)
My name is Spike Willis. I'm a parent of 2 boys and one large dog. One of my sons currently attends PCCS. We are new to Northfield and Prairie Creek having recently moved from the Boston area. I grew up in Texas in a suburb of Dallas that my parents chose for its good schools. So four and a half years ago when we started looking at Boston schools trying to find one that would be a good place for our son I was shocked by the condition of the school facilities we visited and their lack of resources. Due to his inclusion in the Metco program that takes children of color from Boston into suburban schools. Our son ended up in a resource rich school that had very little diversity. I learned that as a white parent of a black boy it was critical that I use my voice to call out people on assumptions they made about my child and to insist that the school address issues that impacted his ability to learn and grow. I am currently working at Just Foods Co-op as a receiver and I'm something of a grocery geek and a foodie. I spent the two and a half years prior to moving to Northfield as a stay at home dad and student.
Ben Miller (parent)
I feel fortunate to participate in such a dynamic and progressive educational environment as is found at Prairie Creek. With one child enrolled and another that will be attending in several years. I value the openness and inclusiveness of the Prairie Creek community and will serve on the Board to help support the school's tradition of providing an excellent progressive education.
Professionally, I mange the Food Inspection Program at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, where I've worked since 2005. I have an undergraduate degree in biology from Macalester College and a Master's and PhD in Public Health from the University of Minnesota. I was born and raised in Minneapolis, but our family has lived in Northfield since 2008. In our free time we enjoy traveling, exploring the nooks and crannies of Minnesota, biking and spending time at our family cabin in the summer.
(Accountant/Chief Financial Officer: ex-officio member)
(Director: ex-officio member)