New Board Members

The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library Confirms Eight New Board Members for 2023 

SAINT PAUL, MN, January 11, 2023 —The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library has elected eight new trustees to its board of directors, effective January 1, 2023. The new members bring a wide range of experience to the organization, including finance, government relations, and human resources. 

The trustees begin their tenure as The Friends prepares to support Saint Paul Public Library’s vision to transform three library branches and make substantial improvements systemwide.  

The new members are Joel Pierre (JP) Bond, Laura Harris, Greg Johnson, Christine Kain, Beth McCray, Mario Paez, Chris Rider, and Andrea Zimmerman. 

Joel Pierre (JP) Bond is currently Project Manager in Strategy and Growth at General Mills, where he is also very active in the Betty’s Family (LGTBQ+), Black Champions (African heritage), and LatinX employee resource groups. Since moving to Minnesota from Chicago in 2014, he has worked for Braun Intertec, Tesla and currently at General Mills in various leadership and project management roles.  

Laura Harris is Founder and Principal at Fusion Consulting LLC, a boutique consulting firm she founded in 2022. She has 25+ years of experience in city and state government relations, state government administration, public affairs, and association management. She is active in her community, including volunteering with several youth development programs and supporting Serving Our Troops as a co-founder, board member, and volunteer.  

Greg Johnson, he/him/his, is the Senior Director of Human Resources, Talent & Strategy at Children’s Minnesota, and a member of the PRIDE employee resource group leadership team. Prior to Children’s, Greg has led highly engaged teams in small to large organizations in multiple industries spanning the U.S. and two Canadian provinces. Greg was recognized as Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal’s Business of Pride Honoree (2020) and honored with the Ogletree Deakins and Twin Cities Society Human Resource Management (TCSHRM) HR Professional of the Year award (2018).  

Christine Kain is a partner in the Minneapolis office of Faegre Drinker, a product liability and mass tort lawyer. A former teacher, she focuses her pro bono efforts to helping children in foster care and immigration asylum work. She previously was a board member with Minnesota Justice Foundation and chair of Minnesota State Bar Association Food Drug & Device section, and she is wrapping up her year as Chair of the Minnesota Supreme Court Historical Society.   

Beth McCray is Nonprofit Strategies Manager with Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation. She previously served as Director of Gift Planning at the Blake School and gained financial experience at Thrivent Financial, Wells Fargo, and Morgan Stanley. She has served on the board of directors for the Annex Teen Clinic, the Bridge for Youth, and White Bear Center for the Arts. She has volunteered as a guide at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts for 20 years and is a frequent speaker on planned giving, endowments, and charitable planning.  

Mario Paez is National Cyber Risk Leader with Marsh McLellan Agency. He has served in related leadership positions at Wells Fargo Insurance Services (USI Insurance Services), Travelers Insurance and Chubb Insurance. Mario is also a board member of Saint Paul’s West Side Citizens Organization (WSCO) and has served on the St. Olaf Alumni Board Association.  

Chris Rider is Executive Associate and Board Liaison at Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity. Previously, she served for 35 years at the City of Saint Paul, in roles with the Mayor’s Office, City Council and Police Department, and officially retired from the City in early 2022.  

Andrea Zimmerman is the Vice President of Future of Work and HR Strategy at Target Corporation. She is responsible for leading the Future of Work strategy as the company reimagines how teams connect, work and collaborate to ensure Target remains a destination for top talent. Since 2007, she has held a variety of roles across HR (both in the US and India).  

Members are elected to a three-year term, which is renewable for up to three terms. The new members complete a board roster that includes leaders from throughout Saint Paul and the greater metro area.    

Outgoing members of the board include Donna Allan, Kathy Brown, Dana Bruce, Armando Camacho, Ted Davis, Kate Dienhart, Jill Droubie, Lohini Mayo, Marcus Pope, Dan Prokott, Tom Votel, and Chuck Wright