Meet the Board

 

Mike Kaiser

I have lived in Forest Lake for 21 years.  I’m married to Sonja, and together we have 5 children.  My oldest  is off to college at UMD. 

My professional  occupation is that of a branch manager, and financial advisor with Raymond James Financial Inc., for the past 16 years.  I have been an advisor for 31 years total. 

President and Co-Founder of the Forest Lake Area Good Samaritans along with my wife, Sonja.

Had the inspiration for founding Good Samaritans while out training for a marathon.  A storm had gone through Forest Lake the night before, and thought it would be fun to just show up and help out a random neighbor who may need some help.  Sonja encouraged me to see if anyone else in the area would be interested in doing the same, and the rest is history. 

I have been a football and baseball coach in Forest Lake for the last 14 years, and have loved every minute of it. 

I have run 52 marathons, in 8 states and two countries, and am working on a goal of running one in every state. 

I have a Border Collie named Bear who almost always accompanies me on my runs!

President

Melissa Lundmark

Forest Lake area resident for over 20 years.  It has always felt right to help others. Raking leaves for elderly neighbors in my teens, holding the door, and the occasional purchase of the car behind me in a drive thru are a few of the good deeds that make my day brighter and hopefully those on the receiving end as well. I believe in the saying, “If you want better, do better.” And I want people to know there is good in this world, so I go forward, 1 good deed at a time.

Vice President

Sonja Kaiser

My name is Sonja Kaiser and I am the lucky woman married to our founder and current president, Mike Kaiser!  I moved to Forest Lake from Peterson, MN, in 2010 when Mike and I “blended” our families.  We have been very happy and have always felt welcome in the community.  When Mike first told me about his vision, I was inspired by how excited and passionate he was to get a group going.  I have always felt that it is important for our kids to have gratitude and a spirit of compassion…the first step in achieving this is to lead by example! 

I work as the branch manager for a local credit union and have been there for 6 years.  Banking and finance was never my chosen career, rather, it chose ME!  I enjoy my position because I get to help people with all sorts of financial needs and seeing them financially healthy and prosperous is the reward I crave! 

In my very limited free time, I love exposing my children to the music and culture of the 80’s, cooking, running and a secret addiction to Pinterest!

For most of my life, my family has moved frequently!  I grew up in Minnesota and I attended 8 different public schools from K-12. After college, I lived in 4 other states and 1 other country before finally taking “root” in Forest Lake!  I am content to call this community my home town and love this group because it helps me to meet others with different likes, backgrounds, ideas, etc, but all with one thing in common…the desire to make a difference!

Social Media/Website

Jackie Loose

My husband and I have four kids: Jacob (8), Aleiah (6), Lydia (3.5), Stella (2)

I work as an Accountant full time; Travel Agent and Pure Romance Consultant on the side

I/we love to travel, outdoor/nature, games, movies, theater/arts, pets, kids, volunteering and spending time with family and friends.

Why I became involved with FLAGS (I love this acronym) - that seems like it should be an easy question to answer, but why isn't it? First and foremost helping and supporting others. Not sure why this is so important to me, but it always has been. My Mom had a big heart and was always helping others in various ways and my late dad was very accepting of others, had a huge heart and felt everything personally. Must have picked up these traits and amplified them a little bit. At Hosanna they did a presentation with jellybeans (or something) in a jar, then sorted them out trying to demonstrate how much time you spend in life doing different things (working, sleeping, cooking, cleaning, etc.) and asked in the end what will you do with your remaining time? This is something that resonates with Jonathan and I, and probably one of the reasons why we live such a "busy" life. Anyway, in our opinion there should always be time to help others, because really in doing so it's a win-win for everyone involved and the positive vibes spread sometimes infinitely. There is so much to be said for community and we believe humans are not meant to live life sedentary and/or alone. The idea of going to meeting with a group of random strangers makes me very nervous, but because we wanted to help and to be a part of something so great we showed up and it's been a fun adventure thus far. Something about breaking through your comfort zone once in awhile is also rewarding. There are so many little reasons why I became involved with FLAGS, another one is that you're all very nice people and I feel welcomed around the group and love the mission. Our family motto is, "Excuses don't make Memories".

Treasurer

Elena Pleitez

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Youth Abassador

Fred Lehman

Born 1953. Married. My wife’s name is Cindy. Have three boys, all married, and I have 5 grandchildren. Worked for Graco 32 years. Retired April 7, 2016. Moved to Forest Lake May 1, 2016. I like to fish, boat, and travel.

Project Manager

Kathy Garry

I've been in Forest Lake for over 35 years, raised 2 boys with my husband, Tim, and taught 36 years in Forest Lake Area Schools. We have been fortunate in living in a neighborhood where neighbors have always stepped in to help one another whenever a need arose - meals when someone was ill or laid up from a surgery, tools shared with a helping hand when something needed fixing or repaired in the home. tree cutting wood splitting, gardens tilled, produce shared. When Mike first proposed the idea of making all Forest Lake more connected and neighborly, as my own single neighborhood already was, I was all for it. I love being able to give back in a way that puts a smile on someone's face or lifts their spirit. The idea of "paying it forward" is a way to be the stone dropped in the pond that starts an ever-widening ripple across the entire pond! The thought that one small simple generous act I may do can create such a tremendous impact touches my heart. Who wouldn't want to spread the joy!?! 

Secretary

Peggy Duffy

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Advisor at Large

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