Officers

President

Melissa Martyr Wagner
Director of Operations, NewStudio Architecture

Bio

Melissa Martyr-Wagner’s education includes a BA in Journalism, Advertising and an MS in Higher Education. In 2011, after having worked for Iowa State University and the University of Minnesota, she and her husband, Sean Wagner, left their jobs to launch together NewStudio Architecture, where she is the Director of Operations. Free time?  Not only does she work with her husband, she sails with him on White Bear Lake. She also enjoy waves and water most anywhere from the Midwest to the Caribbean, as well as yoga and barre classes…and, she’s trying to get better at tennis and cross-country skiing. Melissa is one of the founders of Lakes International Language Academy (LILA), K-12 in Forest Lake. She went on to serve, as well as lead, this highly successful charter school’s board of directors, and later its foundation.  Founded in 2014 and starting with 174 students, the school’s enrollment is now over 1,300 in updated facilities on two campuses in Forest Lake.

She loves supporting her community – and organizations like the White Bear Center for the Arts, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Solid Ground,  White Bear Lake Area Historical Society, and, of course, Century College.

“Century College truly is one of the most remarkable assets of our community and I’m very proud to serve on its Foundation. I am always happy to proselytize with friends, or when I’m networking, of the many successes, stories, and results of Century,” explains Melissa, “My son is just finishing in the paramedic program-so I learn a lot about his experience. And, when I’m on campus I always run into high school and college students I know from the White Bear Lake and Forest Lake schools. I love, as a Foundation member, knowing about the data-informed results and the community impact of Century– but, it is the students who move me. Knowing about their academic stories and journeys always moves me to want to do more.”

Treasurer

Russ Fleming
Partner, Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP

Bio

Bio coming soon.

 

Vice President

Barbara Sheldon
Relationship Manager, Alerus Financial

Bio

Bio coming soon.

Secretary

John Channon
FocalPoint Business Coaching & Training

Bio

John Channon owns and operates a FocalPoint Business Coaching and Training franchise. He has 25 years of experience in business leadership, business development, sales, marketing, people development and profitability management. He currently serves as a Rotarian and a St. Paul SCORE mentor. Otherwise, you can find him reading, skiing, golfing and gardening depending on the season. John holds a BA in Chemistry and an MBA in General Management. During school, Century College becomes one of the most diverse locations in the Twin Cities, he finds that inspiring.

Directors

Kay Baker
Director, Community Relations, Health East (retired)

Bio

Kay retired from HealthEast (now M Health Fairview) as Director, Community Relations. She and her husband have 3 children and six grandchildren and spend some of their time at their home in Duluth on Lake Superior or in Florida. Kay has always been passionate about lifelong learning, and continues to take classes at a senior program at the University of St Thomas. She would love to start something similar at Century. She attended the University of Minnesota.

Kim Bowman
Director of Major and Planned Giving, Way to Grow

Bio

Kim Bowman serves as Director of Major and Planned Giving for Way to Grow, an early childhood education organization in Minneapolis. She has 25 years of experience in major gift development, planned giving, endowment building and capital campaigns. Outside of work, Kim loves spending time at the cabin and singing with Magnum Chorum, a Twin Cities choral ensemble. She holds a BA in Political Science and an MBA with a finance concentration. Kim believes education is the key that unlocks each person’s potential to learn, grow, thrive and contribute to the community.

Kate Christopher
Artist

Bio

Bio coming soon.

Jewelie Grape
Attorney, J. Grape Law, PLLC

Bio

Jewelie Grape provides legal advice to companies and non-profit organizations on matters related to employee benefits, human resources and other important business issues.

Jewelie has several decades of experience in legal, corporate and non-profit matters. She has worked in large law firms, advising corporate and non-profit clients on ERISA, employee benefits, board governance, and general corporate issues, and also has experience as in-house counsel for a non-profit benefits board in which she provided day-to-day legal counsel on a variety of issues. Additionally, Jewelie spent nine years in human resources at several Fortune 100 companies, counseling management on all aspects of day-to-day human resource activities.

When not advising clients, Jewelie spends time reading, traveling, baking, and spending time with family and friends.

Jewelie believes education is the key to unlocking a person’s future, and is excited to be a part of the Century College Foundation Board.

Laura Keithahn
Vice President Hospital Operations, St. John’s Hospital

Bio

Laura Keithahn serves as the Vice President Hospital Operations for St. John’s Hospital, M Health Fairview located in Maplewood, MN. 

In her role, Laura has responsibility for the operations and management of the hospital campus, engaging daily and ensuring optimal quality and experience for patients and their family members.

A highly skilled operations leader with more than 30 years of experience, she is committed to improving how health care is delivered and consistently driving for results.  Laura’s expertise is in hospital strategy, operational innovation and efficiency, financial management and leadership development.  She is a passionate mentor and widely respected for her ability to coach and motivate people.

Laura currently serves as a board member to the Century College Foundation. She also enjoys partnering with other local organizations and government agencies to support the health and well-being of our communities.

A graduate of Radiologic Technology in Dubuque, Iowa, Laura went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Science from Cardinal Stritch University and a master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is also certified in Lean.

Laura believes education is instrumental to grow and develop personally and professionally as individuals.  It opens us to a world of knowledge and equips us with the expertise that is needed to realize our career goals and cultivates us into mature individual capable of planning for the future and making the right decisions in life.

Liz Moscatelli
Executive Director of Vadnais Heights Economic Development Corporation and Program Consultant for Lead4Change

Bio

Liz Moscatelli is currently the Executive Director of Vadnais Heights Economic Development Corporation and Program Consultant for Lead4Change, a privately-funded student leadership program. Previously, spent over 30 years in publishing with USA TODAY/Gannett as General Manager and Regional Director. I was the board chair of the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center facilitating the merger into the National Child Protection Training Center.

When Liz is not working, she loves being on the lake. When she is home, she is on a boat or pontoon, paddleboard, kayak or canoe. When at the cabin, she’s fishing or waterskiing. In the winter, she enjoys snowshoeing, x-c or downhill skiing and she also  enjoys golf and tennis.  Liz holds a BA in Communications and Business. She believes education gives us opportunity to grow and develop beyond what we think we can. She values Century because “Century College's reputation is stellar, and gives options to students whether in high school or beyond.”

Elizabeth Murry
Academic Coordinator for the Student Support Services TRIO Program

Bio

Elizabeth Murry is the Academic Coordinator for the Student Support Services TRIO Program where she works to support college students who are first-generation, low income and/or have disabilities. She holds an MBA from Augsburg University. When she is not working, Elizabeth loves spending time being creative, enjoying nature and learning a range of topics. A first-generation college student herself, Elizabeth finds immense joy in helping other first generationstudents navigate their college journeys, knowing the empowerment, pride and rich value education brings.

Steve Schad
Founder, Optima Advisory

Bio

Steve Schad is the founder of Optima Advisory, a firm that places part-time contract HR executives and administrative support in small and mid-sized companies. He has more than two decades of HR executive and organizational development experience working across sectors and industries to help organizations get better results through people. Steve has dealt directly with many workforce issues that are or can be solved through the community and technical college system and joined the board to help advance the mission of Century College and the Foundation in serving our communities and businesses. He received a Bachelor’s Degree, majoring in political science and Russian area studies, from the University of Minnesota. As a small business owner, he doesn’t have a lot of spare time, but when he does, he loves travelling and spending time with his wife of 24 years and two teenage daughters.

Shari Wilson
Executive Director, White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce

Bio

Bio coming soon.

Portrait of Julie Barton.

Julie Barton
Project Manager, Medtronic

Bio

Julie Barton works at Medtronic and is a Community Impact Champion. In that role she supports employee-led volunteer and fundraising activities through Medtronic Foundation’s matched giving program. She is a current Ph.D. candidate in management and public service at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota . She holds a Master of Public Affairs degree from the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota and a Master of Liberal Studies degree from Metropolitan State University in St. Paul with a concentration in gender studies, sociology, and cultural anthropology. Her Bachelor of Science degree also came from Metropolitan State, in Business Administration. She is most proud of graduating with an AA degree from Century College which laid the foundation for her future educational goals. Julie is most proud of graduating with an AA degree from Century College which laid the foundation for her future educational goals.

Julie is passionate about education, corporate social responsibility, and conservation issues. She also serves on the board of directors for Renewing the Countryside, a Twin Cities-based nonprofit dedicated to conservation and farming issues. In her free time, you can find her happily digging in one of her gardens or planning the next one. Her motto is “Be kind, fight injustice, and use education to build your world.”

Richard Brainerd
Retired HR Consultant, Mahtomedi City Councilperson

Bio

Richard Brainerd served as a Human Resources Director, Consultant and Educator where he dedicated his talents for over 40 years.

When Richard is not traveling, cycling and birdwatching with his wife Mary, he is serving on many community boards, as a City Council member and spending time with his grandchildren.

Richard holds a degree in Business & Economics from the University of Wisconsin. He is a graduate of the Center for Creative Leadership Greensboro, NC.

Richard believes that education is essential to the wellbeing of our society, and that Century College is committed to transforming lives through an innovative, and compassionate approach to education.

Portrait of Kevin Donovan.

Kevin Donovan
Mahtomedi and Northeast Metro 916 School Board Director

Bio

Kevin Donovan is a longtime community member, business leader, civic leader and education advocate. A graduate of Macalester College, he directed Festival Foods from 1990 to 2015. He has served on the Mahtomedi School Board since 2005 and also is a member of the 916 School Board, the former director of development for the Mahtomedi Area Educational Foundation, and chair of the Minnesota School Boards Association Insurance Trust. Kevin previously has served with the National School Boards Association, the Minnesota School Boards Association, the Century College Foundation, East Metro Integration District ISD 6067, and as board chair for the White Bear Area Food shelf.

A member of the White Bear Rotary Club (team co-chair for equity and inclusion, and public image), and the Lake Links Trail Board of Directors, Kevin lives in Grant with his wife, Molly. When he’s not working tirelessly to make the Northeast Metro and the world a more visionary, well-educated, resourceful, and resilient place. 

Portrait of Sarah Johnson.

Sarah Johnson
COO & Investment Advisor, YES Wealth Management

Bio

Sarah Johnson is the Chief Operating Officer, and an Investment Advisor with YES Wealth Management in downtown Mahtomedi. Sarah is also a Registered Dietitian, which she uses to bring a unique perspective to the world of advising by changing and expanding what it means to help a client plan for their future by advising not only on wealth, but health as well. She believes that in order to truly help someone, you must treat the whole person.

Sarah holds a B.A. from the College of St. Benedict, an M.S from The University of Wisconsin Stout, and is a Certified Financial Planner™.

Sarah lives in Mahtomedi with her husband and 3 children. She is a current board member for the Mahtomedi Area Educational Foundation where she leads Student Scholarships and Investments and serves on the Finance Committee for the Century College Foundation. Sarah grew up in this community and feels joy in being able to give back to a community that always put education as a top priority, and provided her with such wonderful educational opportunities.

Mary MacCarthy
Venture Center Program Manager, University of Minnesota

Bio

Mary MacCarthy is a Venture Center Program Manager in the University of Minnesota Technology Commercialization. She facilitates healthcare company launches based on Regent-owned intellectual property and manages the university's seed fund. I am able to serve as a connection for Century College to the University of Minnesota system. Besides supporting her daughters' advanced education, she is renovating her house and enjoys attending art events. Mary holds a BA degree from UW-Eau Claire in Psychology and a Masters of Business Administration degree from the University of St. Thomas. Mary believes "education provided me with context, critical thinking skills, confidence and credentials to pursue all my dreams and support my passions."

Greg Mueller
H.B. Fuller, Director Global SAP

Bio

Greg Mueller serves as the Director, Global SAP at H.B. Fuller. In his role, he is responsible for leading the global SAP rollout program for the Company.  When Greg is not working, he enjoys spending time with his family.  He is also enjoys hunting and fishing.  Greg holds a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota and a MBA from the University of Portland (OR).  Greg strongly believes that an education is the bridge to a successful future.

Steve Ritt
Vice President, North Star Banks

Bio

Steve Ritt is the Chief Financial Officer and Co Chief Executive Officer of North Star Bank, which is a fourth generation family owned and operated community bank located in White Bear Lake and Roseville, MN.

Ritt, 46, as Co-CEO is responsible for providing an acceptable return for its shareholders while also protecting its depositor’s interests, along with overseeing a management team and developing departmental objectives and corporate goals. As CFO he is part of the asset liability management team and is responsible for the financial, capital, and strategic planning of the Bank, along with investing the excess liquidity of the institution.

Ritt has extensive operational and financial experience within North Star Bank and has served on its Board of directors since 2004, and currently serves on all 12 Board appointed committees. He is active in the commercial lending space, a position he has held since 2002, and enjoys helping businesses start, grow, and prosper.

He is an active supporter in the community and serves as Board Member for the Ritt Family Foundation, the Century College Foundation, Mahtomedi Area Educational Foundation, Lakeshore Players, and serves on the finance committee of the Greater White Bear Lake Area Community Foundation.

Portrait of Josie Trobec.

Josie Trobec
PIT Program Manager, Retired

Bio

Josie is a retired IT Program Manager with over 25 years of experience in technology, strategy and large-scale enterprise software implementation project management and training. Throughout her career, she also worked as a business analyst, IT auditor, technical support trainer and customer service representative.

In retirement, Josie has found enjoyment serving as a volunteer lay minister, spending time with people looking for companionship. She is also a yoga instructor, actively learning from leading yogis weekly, and enjoys golfing, quilting, hiking, kayaking, paddle boarding, and pickleball.

Josie holds a BA in Communications in Business from the University of Minnesota – Duluth.

2020-21 Board of Directors Meeting Schedule

Meeting times (unless otherwise noted): 8:30 - 10:30 am

  • Thursday, September 17, Zoom Meeting
  • Thursday, November 19, Zoom Meeting
  • Thursday, January 28, Zoom Meeting
  • Thursday, March 18, Planning Retreat: 8:30am - 1:30pm, Location TBD
  • Thursday, June 17, Location TBD

2020-21 Finance & Executive Committee Meeting Schedule

Executive Committee: Melissa Martyr Wagner, Chair; Barb Sheldon, Vice Chair; Russ Flemming, Treasurer; John Channon, Secretary
Finance Committee: Russ Flemming, Chair; Greg Mueller, Ken Baltzer, Sarah Johnson

Meeting times: Finance 8:30 am, Executive 9:30 am

  • Thursday, August 27
  • Thursday, October 29
  • Thursday, December 17
  • Thursday, February 25
  • Thursday, May 20

2020-21 Development & Outreach Committee Meeting Schedule

Development Committee: Steve Schad, Chair; Kim Bowman, Julie Barton, Kate Christopher, Jewelie Grape
Outreach Committee: Liz Moscatelli, Chair; Melissa Martyr Wagner, Shari Wilson, Kay Baker, Mitchell LeGrand

Meeting times: Development 8:30 am, Outreach 9:30 am

  • Thursday, October 1
  • Thursday, December 3
  • Thursday, February 4
  • Thursday, April 1

2020-21 Scholarship Committee Meeting Schedule

Scholarship Committee: Kate Christopher, Chair; Elizabeth Murray, Laura Keithahn, Rebecca Shavlik, Kevin Donovan, Tou Her, Michele Jersak

Meeting times: 4:00 - 5:00 pm

  • Thursday, November 5
  • Thursday, January 7
  • Thursday, May 6