The Five Wings Art Council Board consists of an eleven-member panel with representation from each of the five counties served. The function of the FWAC Board is to serve as a panel of professionals that review grant applications while facilitating arts development in the Five Wings region. Criteira for board consideration is:
- FWAC recruits board members through an open nomination process.
- Council must reside within one of the five counties in the Five Wings Region: Todd, Wadena, Morrison, Cass and Crow Wing Counties.
- FWAC board members are chosen for their knowledge, expertise, and participation in the arts.
For more information about how you can become a member of the FWAC board, email Mark Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org or Vicki Chepulis at email@example.com
Cass County representatives
Fred brings over 40 years of arts experience to Five Wings Arts Council board. After a life time working in various theatre venues he now serves as artistic director of the Minnesota Folklore Theater in Walker, MN. Fred spent 30 years designing all over the country and was the lead costumer for Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede in Orlando, Florida. He taught costume design for two years at North Hennepin Community College and 10 years at the University of Central Florida. He has directed shows for the past 20 years, spending three years with Burt Reynold's Dinner Theater in Jupiter, Florida. Fred's work has appeared on HBO and the Lifetime Channel.
Michael Sander | Pine River
Michael Sander has a BS in theater from Syracuse University. He has had a long career as an actor (member of the Screen Actors Guild and Actors Equity Association), a college textbook editor, and theater critic in New York and Minneapolis/St. Paul. He currently lives in Pine River where he has directed plays for the Pequot Lakes Community Theater and the Greater Lakes Area Performing Arts (GLAPA). He serves as a member of the GLAPA board.
Crow Wing County representatives
Millie Engisch | Brainerd
With a degree in fine art, commercial art and advertising, Millie Engisch has served in a variety of graphic design and marketing positions, most recently as a marketing specialist at Essentia Health and Crow Wing Energized. As the former artistic director at The Crossing Arts Alliance in Brainerd, she led the local non-profit arts organization for four years. During this time, she worked with the board of directors and various committees to fulfill their mission (to promote and enhance arts opportunities), and connected and communicated with the membership and the broader community.
Lauren Nickisch | Brainerd
Lauren Nickisch is a professional actress, playwright, and retired music educator from the Brainerd Lakes area. Since 1975, she taught classroom and vocal music to students of all ages. She has been highly active in the theatrical venue as well, participating in more than 70 community theater productions as director, vocal director, choreographer, pianist, flutist, and actress. She completed a national tour of Mr. Pickwick's Stories for a Christmas Evening with Troupe America and performed in the Brainerd area with the Impart Players in Reunion Revenge and Variety of Victims, murder mystery-dinner theater productions she co-authored. Performing her one-woman play, Hephzibeth, Woman of Iron, has taken her across the state of Minnesota. Lauren, a certified music educator, worked with the Brainerd Public Schools and was named 1994 Brainerd Teacher of the Year and Minnesota Honor Roll Teacher. For two decades, she taught movement, vocal, visual and theatrical arts to children through the Arts Alive and Window programs which she conceived and developed. Lauren holds a Master's Degree in the Performing Arts from Goddard College.
With a background in music and theater, Sue Johnson works as a substitute teacher in Brainerd elementary schools and is the grant writer for Lakes Area Music Festival and Heartland Symphony Orchestra and a member of the orchestra. In the past she has served as the Executive Director of Lakes Area Music Festival, was a board member of Minnesota Elementary Music Educators, founding member and board member of the Legacy Chorale of Greater Minnesota, church choir director and a director of her church’s Board of Worship. She has also acted in many productions of both the Central Lakes College and Greater Lakes Area Performing Arts.
Morrison County representatives
Cathy Hartle | Little Falls
Cathy holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from St. Mary’s University. Employed by the Initiative Foundation full-time for nine years, she is currently on half-time basis as lead staff on special organizational development projects. Her past experience includes ten years in nonprofit management, training and program development; extensive experience serving with and consulting with a variety of nonprofit boards; 15 years in tax and general accounting as company owner. Cathy volunteers with a variety of organizations locally, recently in leadership roles with the Morrison County Health Communities Collaborative, the Center for Nonprofit Excellence and Social Innovation, and with her church. She has served on both local and statewide boards and is involved in community development, social justice, arts, and civic engagement efforts. She says, "My husband and I have a strong interest in most things musical; I am a quilter and also work with yarn; he is a wood carver, and we are avid readers. We appreciate visual arts (especially pottery, wood arts, and painting), attend art crawls, and often visit art galleries and centers when we travel. We attend many performing arts events, particularly concerts and theater."
Brigid Fitzgerald | Little Falls
Brigid is a partner in the Rosenmeier Law Office in Little Falls. She has served as a board member for the St. Francis Music Center where her three sons took music lessons. She and her husband and sons have been frequent attendees at the events and activities of Great River Arts and are great art supporters.
Todd County representatives
With a Masters of Education from the University of Minnesota Duluth, Dawn is the Regional Development Planner and Communications Manager for the Region Five Development Commission. She has volunteered with the Five Wings Arts Council and the Browerville Food Shelf.
Wadena County representatives
A retired social worker for Wadena County Social Services, Allan had various responsibilities with adult mental health, vulnerable adults, developmental disabilities, and management of client personal funds. He volunteers with Knute Nelson Hospice, which includes visiting and companionship as well as building ramps, installing grab bars, or building special equipment. He is a court-appointed guardian for a person with dementia and another with traumatic brain injury. Active in his church and community, his art interests have been fueled by the Madhatter Community Theatre for which he has directed. He has also volunteered with the Wadena Area Concert Association, selling memberships and choosing programs.