Board Members

MAGGIE SMITH – BOARD PRESIDENT

Maggie Smith has been a La Crescent resident since 2009, and shares her home her husband, three sons and several furry family members. As a public health educator in neighboring La Crosse County, Maggie is passionate about creating a strong, healthy community through public health policy, system and environmental changes as well as ensuring equity and accessibility of services both in La Crescent and in the surrounding region. In her spare time, Maggie is a novice gardener, aspiring yogi and enjoys hiking, biking, reading and running. Contact Maggie via email at: maggie.smith@lacrescenthcp.com.

LINDA LARSON – PAST PRESIDENT and PROGRAM MANAGER, LA CRESCENT COMMUNITY BIKE SHOPPE

Linda has been a resident of La Crescent for 25 years, raising two children here. She came to Healthy Community Partnership in 2007 as a representative for Gundersen Health System where she worked as an clinical exercise physiologist and wellness educator. She is now enjoying retirement. Linda has served as Secretary and President of HCP and is currently the program manager for the La Crescent Community Bike Shoppe. She is passionate about helping La Crescent be a safe, active community with opportunities for everyone to live a healthy life. Linda enjoys the beauty of our area by walking and biking in our neighborhoods, hiking in the bluffs and gardening in her own backyard. You can email Linda at ljlarson55@msn.com.

DIANE PALM – BOARD SECRETARY and PROGRAM MANAGER, LA CRESCENT COMMUNITY GARDEN

Diane and her husband Dave moved to La Crescent in 2017 from rural Winona. She is a retired Nurse Practitioner and has worked with both Gundersen and Mayo Health Systems. She was the director of Student Health services at Winona State University and very involved with Healthy Campus initiatives during those years. Since moving to LaCrescent she has enjoyed volunteering with the Community Garden and the LaCrescent Food shelf. Her hobbies include golfing, gardening, hiking and biking. Contact Diane at: diane.palm@LaCrescentHCP.org.

JEN ETRHEIM – FINANCIAL MANAGER

Jen joined the HCP board in February of 2017. She spent her early childhood in La Crescent and finished high school in Saint Charles, MN and came back to La Crescent after graduating from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse in the spring of 2008. The beauty of the bluffs, strong families ties and the sense of community pride have always made La Crescent feel like home. Jen is also a member of the La Crescent Lions Club. Jen works at La Crosse Sign in the accounting department. In her free time she enjoys spending time with friends and family, walking her dog Gus around town, and crocheting. You can contact Jen by email at jetrheim@gmail.com.

KASEY BURG – BOARD MEMBER

Kasey Burg has called La Crescent home since 2002, and created a permanent residence with her husband and fur baby in 2019. As an employee and active member on the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee for La Crosse County, Kasey is passionate about creating opportunities for equality and inclusion in her community. In her free time Kasey runs a digital creation business, goes on walks with her dog, spends time with family and enjoys going for 4-wheeler rides through the woods. You can contact Kasey at kaseyburg@gmail.com

BOB PITEL – BOARD TREASURER and PROGRAM MANAGER, APPLESEED COMMUNITY THEATRE

Bob Pitel and his wife Jackie have been La Crescent residents since 1980. They raised four children in La Crescent and now have six grandsons. Bob taught math, computer programming, and physics at La Crescent High School for 29 years before retiring. He is currently teaching math at Globe University. Bob was one of the founding members of Appleseed Community Theatre in 2002 and is currently ACT’s president. He joined the HCP board when Appleseed became a program of HCP and is currently serving as treasurer for HCP. Bob can be contacted at bobpitel@gmail.com.

JEFF ERICKSON – BOARD MEMBER

Jeff Erickson has lived in the La Crescent community for the past 30 years and has been married to his wonderful wife Cathy for the past 29 years. Together they have raised 3 great children who are now grown. Jeff has a Graphics Design and Printing and a skilled public relations, image management and media publications background. In his free time, he creates hand-crafted recycled bird houses and bird feeders. He also enjoys going for weekend drives, taking nature pictures and going to movies with his wife. You can contact Jeff by email at: jeffo@acegroup.cc.

SHELLEY ELLINGSON – PROGRAM MANAGER, TOUCHING MOMENTS and WINDY RIDGE RANCH THERAPEUTIC CENTER

Shelley Ellingson lives in rural Hokah with her husband, cats and horses. Her hobbies include reading, scrapbooking, horseback riding, and traveling with her family. She enjoys living in the La Crescent area and has served the community through her church and youth organizations, including Girl Scouts and 4-H. As an HCP Board member, she has learned more about the wonderful services the La Crescent area has to offer and with her dedicated volunteers, she has made the Touching Moments Animal Assisted Activities and Windy Ridge Ranch programs very successful. You can contact Shelley by email at windyrr@goacentek.net .

SANDY GRAVES – PROGRAM MANAGER, NEIGHBORS IN ACTION

Sandy Graves has been the Director of Neighbors in Action since the program began in 2007. She is passionate about providing the services our older neighbors need to stay safe and healthy. She and her husband Todd have been married for over 25 years. They have two children and one granddaughter. Sandy loves reading and spending time outdoors, especially on the river. Contact her at sandy@neighborsinaction.net.

SUSAN ODDSEN – PROGRAM MANAGER, LA CRESCENT FOOD SHELF

Susan moved to La Crescent with her husband Logan Colby and their two children in 2009, for his teaching position at the La Crescent Middle School. She joined the Healthy Community Partnership board in 2012, because she shares the vision of creating a healthy, thriving community in La Crescent. Her passion is growing and eating healthy foods, so she stepped up to help grow the Community Garden, and the La Crescent-Hokah Elementary School Garden. Having volunteered at the La Crescent Food Shelf for several years, she recently answered the call to help grow this program as it comes under HCP’s umbrella. Her other interests include hiking and camping, travel, music, theatre, and following her children’s activities. Contact Susan at: susan.oddsen@gmail.com.

BETSY KNOWLES – PROGRAM MANAGER, NEIGHBORS DAY

Betsy has been a resident of La Crescent since 1986. In 2005 she was involved in the Southern MN Initiative Town Hall Meetings where she and several others first proposed hosting an Annual Neighbors Day in La Crescent. Betsy has helped coordinate the day since 2006 – and through the tremendous support of the community, Neighbors Day has been a reality through rain, sun and even snow! Betsy is retired from the Economics Department at the University of Wisconsin La Crosse, and enjoys tai chi, long walks, camping, growing food and making lively music with her band. You can reach Betsy at 507-895-8866.

ERIC MINOR – BOARD MEMBER

Eric Minor moved to La Crescent in 2017 with his wife Amanda and their son. Both Eric and Amanda were raised in a small town in northern Wisconsin and are happy to be back in a small town with a strong community focus. As a Financial Advisor with Edward Jones Eric has always had a passion for helping others. Eric also serves on the ABLE board, and is a member of the Lions club. In his free time he enjoys traveling to sporting events with his family, playing volleyball, and snowmobiling. You can contact Eric at eric.minor@edwardjones.com.

EMILY RILEY – BOARD MEMBER

Emily has been a La Crescent resident her whole life, and is a recent graduate of Luther College in Decorah, IA. She is excited to serve on the HCP board and give back to the community where she grew up. Emily is the Library Assistant at the La Crescent Public Library, and is also an organist and pianist. She enjoys music, reading, and spending time outdoors. You can contact Emily at eriley@selco.info.