Susan Lynch has lived and worked in the Grand Rapids area all of her adult life, and recognizes that our region is a fabulous place to raise a family. She’s long been an advocate of the Community Foundation’s constructive work in the community and believes philanthropy and volunteerism are the life blood of our region. She is proud to be a part of fostering the vitality of our area as the Community Foundation continues to join charitable intentions with community needs. Susan most recently served as the director of the ICC Foundation where she enjoyed working with student scholarships and spearheading a $4.9 million capital campaign.
Susan has been an active member of the Grand Rapids area for many years, and has served on the board of the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, Itasca County Habitat for Humanity, the Grand Rapids Economic Development Authority, the Grand Rapids Planning and Zoning Commission, and the Governor’s Fishing Opener.
Susan holds an Associate of Arts degree from Itasca Community College, and a Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Behavior from the College of St. Scholastica. She and her husband Chris relish spending time with their young grandchildren and appreciate living and working in Grand Rapids.
Chief Development Officer
Mindy grew up in Grand Rapids, returned to the area to raise her family and believes that was one of the best decisions she’s ever made. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Minnesota-Duluth and Masters in Communication from Bethel University. She most recently served as the Executive Director of River Grand Senior Living and prior to that was the Community Development Coordinator at ElderCircle, a nonprofit serving seniors. For the past ten years she has also taught Communication classes as an adjunct instructor at Itasca Community College.
A dedicated community member, she has been, and is, active with many area projects, boards and committees such as the Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce Board, School District 318 Board, the Elementary Facilities Taskforce, the Noble Hall Field Turf Project, as well as serving on the ISD 318 Endowment Fund Board. In her role as Chief Development Officer, one of her responsibilities will be to increase awareness of the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation’s role in the community and how it can join charitable intentions with community needs.
Mindy lives in Grand Rapids with her husband and three daughters and enjoys live music and all outside activities that Northern Minnesota has to offer.
Interim Director of Operations
Sarah Copeland has been with the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation for almost two decades. Sarah is currently serving as the Interim Director of Operations, insuring the Foundation continues to engage in and support individual and community needs of support and giving. She holds a BA in Management from the College of St. Scholastica and serves on various committees and boards throughout the community from workforce development to housing and education issues.
Prior to the Community Foundation, Sarah spent more than 15 years involved in the military community, domestically and over-seas. Throughout those years, she was involved with the first Army Family Action Plan (AFAP) Conference at Ft. Campbell, KY, the initiation of Family Support Groups (now FRGs), spouse development and other community and leadership roles.
Brianna joined the team at the Community Foundation in 2014. As the Foundation's Program Administrator, Brianna handles all crisis grants, and conducts most of the day-to-day activities involved in the scholarship program and Annual Grant Cycle.
Brianna graduated from Itasca Community College in 2003 with her AAS in Business Management. Born and raised in Deer River, she is honored to serve the Greater Itasca Area in a variety of ways. Brianna lives in Cohasset with her husband and their two children. She and her family love to spend time outdoors on their Mississippi River property and play outside throughout Northern Minnesota.
Cathy joined the staff at the Community Foundation in the fall of 2017. As Administrative Assistant, she provides support to the rest of the staff to help keep things rolling smoothly. Cathy’s the first friendly face you’ll see when you come through our door and she looks forward to welcoming you!
Although comparatively new to the Foundation, she is not new to the community. Cathy, her husband, and their young family moved to Grand Rapids over 30 years ago from Maine to purchase and manage Itasca Greenhouse, Inc. in Cohasset. In addition to assisting with the day-to-day management and administration of the greenhouse, Cathy was active in the community as a soccer mom, Volunteer Coordinator at Murphy Elementary School and assisted with the Boy Scouts for their three sons. She obtained her BS degree in Communication Disorders from the University of New Hampshire and her MA in Audiology from the University of Connecticut. Cathy lives in Arbo with her husband, where she enjoys long walks and gardening