Meet the Trustees

Board of Trustees members serve on a volunteer basis and are appointed by the Governor. The board includes a trustee from each of the state’s eight congressional districts, four trustees from the state at-large, and a student trustee from state university, community college, and technical college. Trustee appointments are for a six-year term, except for student trustees, whose terms are for two years. Membership of the board is defined in Minn. Stat. §136F.02, subdivision 1.

Comments can be submitted through the Office of the Board of Trustees or to trustees individually. If contacting individual trustees, please copy the Office of the Board of Trustees at:

Kari Campbell
Office of the Board of Trustees
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Kari.Campbell@minnstate.edu

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Micah Coatie
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Micah.Coatie@minnstate.edu

Technical College Student
Term ends June 30, 2025

 

 

Micah Coatie (he/him), Saint Paul, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2023. He is a student at Saint Paul College pursuing an accounting associate degree and plans to earn a bachelor's degree in Accounting. Coatie works in the non-profit sector as a homeless shelter program supervisor.

Governor Tim Walz appointed Coatie to the Board of Trustees on September 16, 2023. His term ends on June 30, 2025.

 

Jay Cowles

Jay Cowles
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Jay.Cowles@minnstate.edu

Congressional District 4
Term ends June 30, 2026

 

Jay Cowles, St. Paul, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2014. He is managing director of Lawrence Creek LLC, a private family investment company. Previously, he held several positions with Cowles Media Company, former owners of the Star Tribune newspaper, concluding as chairman of the Board of Directors. Cowles also served as chairman and president of the Women’s Pro Softball League, a startup sports enterprise.

He is a founding and active member of the Itasca Project since 2004, and currently serves as a board member of the Minneapolis Downtown Council and of Green Cities Accord.  He has held advisory roles at the University of Minnesota with the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs and the Center for Transportation Studies. He has also served a number of civic and arts organizations including the Saint Paul Foundation, the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, the Guthrie Theater, The Friends of the Saint Paul Library, and the Mississippi Park Connection. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

 

Governor Tim Walz reappointed Cowles to the Board of Trustees in 2020. His terms ends June 30, 2026. 

Dawn Erlandson

Dawn Erlandson
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Dawn.Erlandson@minnstate.edu

At-large
Term ends June 30, 2024

 

Dawn Erlandson, Minneapolis, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2012. Erlandson is the president of Aurora Strategic Advisors, Inc., where she leads public affairs and marketing communications efforts for local, state, and national clients.

She served as chair of the Board of Directors of the Association of Community College Trustees from 2019-2020. Erlandson is also the board chair of UPSTREAM, a national environmental organization. She previously served as board president of the Minneapolis Community and Technical College Foundation.

Governor Mark Dayton reappointed Erlandson to the Board of Trustees in 2018. Her term ends June 30, 2024

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Jim Grabowska 
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Jim.Grabowska@minnstate.edu

At-large
Term ends June 30, 2028

 

Jim Grabowska, St. Clair, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2022. He has been active in different fields of education during most of his professional career. He taught a variety of subjects in high schools here and abroad before moving into higher education, teaching at Gustavus Adolphus College, St. John’s University/College of St. Benedict, the state university of Cuenca, Ecuador and 23 years teaching at Minnesota State University, Mankato. While at MSU, Mankato, he taught Spanish and world language education courses. He retired from teaching in 2021. Jim served in a variety of roles within the faculty union while at MSU: as local association president for 3 years and then as president of the Inter Faculty Organization from 2014-2018.

Jim has represented education interests on a variety of boards including the ISD 75 School Board, Minnesota Board of Teaching (now PELSB), Region 9 Development Commission, South Central Service Cooperative and the Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration.

He received his B.S. from Northern State University, M.A. from the University of Oklahoma and Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.

Governor Tim Walz appointed Grabowska to the Board of Trustees in 2022. His terms ends on June 30, 2028.

Photo of Tim Huebsch

Tim Huebsch
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Timothy.Huebsch@minnstate.edu

Congressional District 3
Term ends June 30, 2028

 

Tim Huebsch, Maple Grove, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2022. He leads Tech Innovation for General Mills and has been with the company for over 20 years.  During that time, he had held leadership roles in Information Technology, Supply Chain Logistics and Digital Marketing.  He earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science –Management Information Systems from Minnesota State University, Mankato and a MBA from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.

Huebsch is actively involved in the community through board service and with the startup community where he is an angel investor and mentor. He currently serves on the Guthrie Theater Board, Mankato Area Foundation, and Minneapolis Club Board of Governors.  He is a past chair of both the Foundation Board and Alumni Association at Minnesota State University, Mankato and the Carlson School of Management Alumni Board.

Governor Tim Walz appointed Huebsch to the Board of Trustees in 2022.  His term ends on June 30, 2028.

Photo of Idman Ibrahim

Idman Ibrahim
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Idman.Ibrahim@minnstate.edu

State University Student
Term ends June 30, 2025

 

Idman Ibrahim, St. Paul, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2023. Ibrahim graduated from Minnesota State University, Mankato with a bachelor's degree in social work and gender and women’s studies. She served as the Student Body Vice President at Minnesota State University, Mankato where she advocated for students' voices and pushed for a more equitable campus and space inclusivity, and also worked with Library and Learning to extend the writing and tutoring center hours for students who have a language barrier. She worked as a community leader fellow for Students United and has been appointed to the St. Paul Recovery Act Community Reparation Commission.

Governor Walz appointed Ibrahim to the Board of Trustees in 2023. Her term ends on June 30, 2025.

Photo of Jerry Janezich

Jerry Janezich
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Jerry.Janezich@minnstate.edu

Congressional District 8
Term ends June 30, 2028

 

Jerry Janezich, Side Lake, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2016. He is a partner of a small business, Jerry & Tom’s Inc., a bar and restaurant in Chisholm. He attended Hibbing Community College and graduated from St. Cloud State University with a bachelor of science degree in speech. Janezich served on the Minnesota State government relations team for thirteen years. Prior to that, he served in the Minnesota House of Representatives from 1989-1992 representing District 5B and the Minnesota Senate from 1993-2000 representing District 5. He was Saint Louis county commissioner for 5 years.

Governor Tim Walz reappointed Janezich to the Board of Trustees in 2022. His term ends on June 30, 2028.

Photo of Roger Moe

Roger Moe
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Roger.Moe@minnstate.edu

Congressional District 7
Term ends June 30, 2026

 

Roger Moe, Erskine, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2014. He is the current president of National Strategies, Inc. He served 32 years in the Minnesota Legislature, including 22 years as Senate Majority Leader. His legislative accomplishments include the creation of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, the Minnesota Job Skills Partnership, the Midwest Higher Education Commission, and the Environmental Trust Fund. He has also served as the Vice President of Coleman/Christison, Inc., and as a mathematics teacher and coach at Ada High School.

Moe is a former member of the Policy Consensus Initiative Board of Directors, Debate Minnesota, the Minnesota Twins Community Fund Governance Committee, and the Minnesota Job Skills Partnership Board. Senator Moe earned his B.S. from Mayville State University and an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree from the University of Minnesota for his years of public service.

Governor Tim Walz reappointed Moe to the Board of Trustees in 2020. His term ends on June 30, 2026. 

Javier Morillo

 

Javier Morillo
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
MorilloJavi@gmail.com

Congressional District 4
Term ends June 30, 2026

 

 

Javier Morillo, St. Paul, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2020. He is a research fellow with the Center for Innovation in Worker Organization at Rutgers University. He is also an adjunct faculty member at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, where he co-teaches a course on crisis communications with former Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch. He previously served for 14 years as president of SEIU Local 26 and taught history and anthropology as a predoctoral fellow at Carleton College.

Morillo was an adjunct faculty at Macalester College. He is the creator and co-host of "Wrong About Everything," the only Minnesota bipartisan political commentary podcast.

Governor Tim Walz appointed Javier Morillo to the Board of Trustees in 2020. His term ends on June 30, 2026.

Photo of April Nishimura

April Nishimura
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
April.Nishimura@minnstate.edu

Congressional District 2
Term ends June 30, 2024

 

April Nishimura, Apple Valley, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2018. She is vice president and head of global customer experience at global semiconductor powerhouse, Infineon Technologies AG. Previously, she served as head of Customer Experience at Onsemi Semiconductor and held multiple executive leadership roles at Ecolab in Finance, Sales, Marketing, and Product Development. Prior to that, she led sales transformation at GTE and Verizon Communications in its Hawaii, West Coast, Southwest, and New England markets.

Nishimura served as an Ecolab Executive Mentor and previously served on the Dallas Asian Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. She is a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt in Process Improvement and a Certified Scrum Product Owner. She earned a bachelor of arts from the University of Hawaii and her MBA from Pepperdine University’s George L. Graziadio school of Business.

Governor Mark Dayton appointed Nishimura to the Board of Trustees in 2018. Her term ends on June 30, 2024.

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Christopher Richter
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Christopher.Richter@minnstate.edu

Community College Student
Term ends June 30, 2025

 

Christopher Richter, Owatonna, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2023. Chris attends South Central College and plans to earn an Associate of Arts and then continue his studies as an engineering major. He served as the Student Senate President at South Central College, where he advocated for students' basic needs at the state and federal level. Chris also has experience working with student life to connect with students and help provide a comforting atmosphere for all students.

Governor Tim Walz appointed Richter to the Board of Trustees on September 16, 2023. His term ends on June 30, 2025.

 

Kathy Sheran

Kathleen Sheran
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Kathleen.Sheran@minnstate.edu

Congressional District 1
Term ends June 30, 2026

 

 

Kathleen Sheran, Mankato, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2020. She served three terms in the Minnesota Senate representing District 23 and 19.  While in the Senate she served as a Majority Whip, Vice Chair for Higher Education, and Chair of Health, Human Services and Housing. Prior to serving in the Senate, Sheran was on the faculty at Minnesota State University, Mankato teaching in the School of Nursing. Additionally, she was an equity partner in SMR, a real estate development and management company.  Sheran has a long history of service, including sixteen years as president of the Mankato City Council and past service on the Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board, the Governor's Commission on Judicial Selection, and past chair of the Minnesota Health Insurance Exchange (MNsure). 

Governor Tim Walz appointed Sheran to the Board of Trustees in 2020. Her terms ends on June 30, 2026.

Photo of George Soule

George Soule
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
651-201-1705
George.Soule@minnstate.edu

At-large
Term ends June 30, 2024

 

George Soule, Minneapolis, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2017. He is a Member of the White Earth Nation and a judge of the White Earth Tribal Court of Appeals. George is a founding partner of Soule & Stull LLC, where he is a civil trial lawyer. He earned his B.A. from Minnesota State University Moorhead and his J.D. from Harvard Law School.

George serves on the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board and is a past chair of the Minnesota Commission on Judicial Selection. He has served as a board member of the Division of Indian Work in Minneapolis and the Minnesota State University Moorhead Foundation.

Governor Mark Dayton reappointed Soule to the Board of Trustees in 2018. His term ends on June 30, 2024.

 

Photo of Cheryl Tefer

Cheryl Tefer
30 7th Street East, Suite 350
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: 651-201-1705
Cheryl.Tefer@MinnState.edu

Congressional District 6
Term ends June 30, 2028

 

Cheryl Tefer, Andover, has served on the Board of Trustees since 2016. She previously was a faculty member at Anoka-Ramsey Community College, where she taught nursing for 26 years. She earned a bachelor of science degree in nursing from the University of Iowa, a master of science degree in nursing from the University of Minnesota, and did post-graduate work at the University of Minnesota. Tefer served on a strategic planning committee for Anoka-Ramsey Community College and Anoka Technical College, as well as the academic affairs and standards council at Anoka-Ramsey Community College. She was named Minnesota State Board of Trustees Educator of the Year in 2014.

Governor Tim Walz reappointed Tefer to the Board of Trustees in 2022. Her term ends June 30, 2028.

Kari Campbell
Executive Director
Phone: 651-201-1705
Kari.Campbell@minnstate.edu

Amanda Muenzner
Board Office Coordinator
Phone: 651-201-1706
Amanda.Muenzner@minnstate.edu