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United Way Board Spotlight: John Stemper

United Way Board member, John Stemper (right) stands with United Way Ex-Offico, Ken Kinsey at the 2015 Lumberjack Pancake Kick-off.

I work for MDI as the Director of Product Development and New Ventures and am married with two adult children. We have enjoyed all aspects of Itasca County and Northern Minnesota including the rich natural resources, friendly people, and the great variety of community activities, restaurants and arts.

What inspired you to be involved with United Way? 
United Way of 1000 Lakes is actively involved in supporting so many of the critical social services that our community requires, and as a result, touches the lives of individuals every day. This type of support is what makes a necessary difference in our community. 

What is the most rewarding thing you have taken from this experience? 
Knowing that the grants United Way makes within our community truly make a difference in the quality of life for so many individuals and families.

What is one word you would use to sum up United Way’s work? 
Life-changing

What impresses you most about Itasca? 
Itasca County has a rich mix of employers and hard-working employees who are proud of their community, located in a beautiful part of the state. The county also has many services to support our citizens in all aspects of their daily lives. We have many of the benefits and services of a larger city, but with the charm and cohesiveness that small towns and rural areas offer.

What is one thing about United Way that you think most people don’t know? 
That the United Way is made up of individuals from the local community and that in turn, all of the dollars raised from the community are invested back in our community.

What advice would you give to a potential donor who is considering investing in United Way? 
A donation to the United Way of 1000 Lakes is an investment in our local community to help address the education, income/basic needs, and the health of our residents.