Meet the Community Foundation Board Board members link community understanding with local charitable


Last week we introduced you to our 2018 Board Officers including Steve who understands local business, Kelly who is involved with youth sports and healthcare, and Rhett from Remer, who was a small business owner and oversees operations at a local telephone (utility) company.

This week, we introduce you to four more board members: Dennis Anderson, Kathy Dodge, Jim Lamke and Julie Wilcox. Dennis lives in Deer River and is a very active member of Rotary; Jim runs a local radio station and is passionate about the Hill City area; Kathy brings experience in education and the arts; and Julie has passion and experience in marketing, a vast knowledge of food health and banking experience.

“We are very fortunate to have active Community Foundation Board members that bring their knowledge of community and local needs to the table,” says Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation Board Chair Kelly Kirwin. “It is our job to ensure our communities receive the most benefit from the Foundation’s charitable contributions.”

The Community Foundation currently has 15 Board Members. Each Board member is nominated due to the community perspective he or she brings to the Foundation. Their unique viewpoints allow the Foundation to understand the Greater Itasca Area in both micro and macro ways – big picture and specifics.

We hope that getting to know the Community Foundation Board and Staff will provide you with a better idea of what the Community Foundation is all about – joining charitable intentions with community need.

Meet the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation’s Board Members

Dennis Anderson

Dennis Anderson joined the Community Foundation Board in 2013

Dennis is a graduate of Indus High School, Indus, MN; Rainy River Community College, International Falls, MN; and Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, MN with a degree in Economics and Political Science. He joined Burlington Northern Railroad in their Transportation Department after college as a Management Trainee, rising to the executive level in Operations. In 1996 Dennis left Burlington Northern and developed, built and owned Super 8, Sleep Inn and Best Western Hotels in the Western U.S. He continues to be active in real estate development and investment. He and his wife Betty have two grown children and have retired to Deer Lake in rural Grand Rapids.

Dennis is a 24-year member of Rotary International serving in various leadership positions including President of the Grand Rapids Rotary in 2014-2015. He has taken numerous trips abroad on Rotary International Community Service Projects volunteering in Mexico, Nicaragua and Ecuador. He served as the Alternate Leader for a Group Study Exchange to Finland in 2013.

Dennis has served on the Boards of various non-profits including Voyageurs Lutheran Ministry where he was President for a three year term. As an avid waterfowl hunter he has also served on the International Board of Directors of the Delta Waterfowl Foundation.

Dennis considers serving on the Board of Directors an honor and privilege and looks forward to community involvement with the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation.

Kathy Dodge

Kathy Dodge joined the Community Foundation Board in 2017

Kathy Dodge was Executive Director of the Itasca Orchestra and Strings Program and also taught English at Grand Rapids High School for most of her career. She served on the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, and was co-founder of Grand Rapids Arts. Currently, she is on the board of Minnesota Citizens for the Arts and is a commissioner with the Grand Rapids Arts and Culture Commission. Her education includes a BA from St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY and an MA from Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY.

Jim Lamke

Jim Lamke joined the Community Foundation Board in 2017

Jim Lamke lives in Hill City and is the current owner and general manager of Lamke Broadcasting (KOZY/KMFY/J105) in Grand Rapids. Jim is active in a number of nonprofit and community causes including serving as past president of the Hill City Lions Club, past member of the Itasca Community College Foundation Board and has been very active with the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce serving as a committee chair. Jim is currently the President of the Haypoint Jackpine Snowmobile Club and also serves on the Fund Advisory Committee for the Hill City Area Community Fund.

Julie Wilcox

Julie Wilcox joined the Community Foundation Board in 2017

Julie Wilcox joined the board of the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation in the spring of 2017 and is the Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Grand Rapids State Bank.

Julie grew up in West Central Minnesota and after attending college and living out of state for several years, returned to her home state in 2013 and has resided in Grand Rapids ever since. She holds an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Coe College and an MBA in Marketing from the University of Iowa.

Julie loves being involved in the community and is proud to serve the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation. She has also been a passionate advocate for people with food allergies for several years. Julie’s oldest daughter has several life-threatening food allergies. Julie has served on the national board of FARE (Food Allergy Research and Education) out of Washington, DC since 2009. Julie chaired the Walk for Food Allergy in Boston for eight years before moving back to Minnesota and also served as a member of the Massachusetts General Hospital Food Allergy Center’s Parent Advisory Committee in Boston. Prior to Grand Rapids State Bank, Julie spent the bulk of her career working in media and account service at various advertising agencies.

Julie and her husband, Noah, have five daughters. They love spending time on the lake, traveling, cooking, skiing and are both passionate advocates for the community banking industry.


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