To bring life and learning opportunities to Edina Public Schools students who are economically disadvantaged.
As a mission-aligned partner with Edina Public Schools, we are uniquely positioned to unlock opportunities in academics, arts, and athletics for students who have financial need.
Why We Exist
In any given year, 8-10% of Edina students live at or near the poverty line. Financial concerns often prevent them from getting involved in the many activities and clubs which make an Edina education great. While there are several local non-profits which help with basic needs, Edina Give and Go is the only organization to concentrate on breaking down barriers to participation in the arts, academics, and athletics.
09.01.2017 Edina Give and Go is featured in Edina Magazine http://edinamag.com/edina-charity-give-and-go-assists-educational-and-extra-curricular-programs
03.09.2017 Edina Give and Go receives 2017 Edina Rotary Grant – as mentioned in Community Notes in Sun Current on March 9, 2017
07.25.2014 Nonprofit helps hundres of Edina students
Edina Give and Go is a 501(c)(3) organization. Our work to bring life and learning opportunities to Edina Public Schools students who are economically disadvantaged would be impossible without the commitment and generous support of donors. All gifts are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. We are committed to stewarding these funds to make the greatest impact possible in our community. Our Employer Identification Number (EIN) is 47-5031672.
Edina Give and Go Financial Reports
Board Co- Chair
Cathy provides the Edina Give and Go Board a unique level of experience with Edina Public Schools. Cathy served on the Edina School Board for 8 years and has been actively involved in school district activities for over 25 years. In addition to her work with Give and Go, she works with 4th grade math students at Cornelia, helps coach the Valley View Mock Trial team and works with students at the high school through the Access program. In March 2016 Cathy was recognized by the Edina Community Foundation and Connecting with Kids as a recipient of a Community Leadership Award for her volunteer work with Edina youth. Cathy is the mother of 4 grown children who all attended Edina public schools and lives in Edina with her husband, John Ellingboe.
Board Co- Chair
Ann Schulze is an active volunteer in the community and is honored to be a part of Edina Give and Go. She has been active in the STRIVE (Students Taking a Renewed Interest in the Value of Education) and Access programs at Edina High School over the last four years and was a founder and former Board Chair of the Jabbok Foundation in Minneapolis. In February 2013, Ann was recognized by the Edina Community Foundation and Connecting with Kids as a recipient of a Community Leadership Award for her volunteer work with Edina youth. She also served as a member of the District Equity Advisory Committee. Ann has 3 daughters who graduated from Edina High School. Ann is hoping to bring equitable experiences to all Edina School students. She currently lives in Edina with her husband, Mark.
Julie serves on the Greater Twin Cities United Way (GTCUW) Board of Directors, chairing its Community Impact Committee and sitting on its Executive Committee. She serves on the Board of Directors for Way to Grow, an agency that works to ensure that young children in Minneapolis’ most isolated families are healthy and ready for school. She also serves as an Access volunteer at Edina High School.
“Edina has been a wonderful place for our children to grow up. But as a volunteer in the schools, I have seen the difficulties children from low-income families face as they try to take advantage of the opportunities Edina and our schools have to offer. Fees, transportation, and access to technology can be real barriers. Edina Give and Go makes it easy for each of us to reach out and help these children in small but meaningful ways. I am excited to be part of an organization that is pioneering a new way for Edina to help all its children succeed.”
Julie is married with three grown children, all of whom attended Edina schools.
S. Michael Briggs
Michael Briggs believes that impactful education is the foundation and driver of a strong society; and as such, every child is entitled to an educational experience that brings out the best in them. Michael volunteers his time tutoring math and occasionally working as the Thanksgiving Day cameraman at Sharing and Caring Hands, located in Minneapolis. With a background in economics and mathematics, he has pursued a career in corporate finance within the healthcare industry, working to make the healthcare system work better for everyone.
Jon is an alumnus of Edina-West High School and has lived in Edina for a total of twenty years. He and his wife Peggy have two college-age daughters, both of whom received their entire K-12 education in the Edina Public School system. Jon currently serves with International Justice Mission, a global humanitarian organization that seeks to protect the poor from violence in the developing world. Jon formerly served with Habitat for Humanity, World Vision, and was an associate pastor at Christ Presbyterian Church in Edina. He has volunteered extensively in Edina as a guest speaker in the public schools, a coach for girls’ athletics, and as a board member of Edina Athletic Boosters and Edina Basketball Association. He also volunteers as Edina’s Fire Chaplain. Jon serves as a Board member because he strongly believes in Edina Give and Go’s mission of allowing every child in Edina an opportunity to thrive. He also believes that Edina Give and Go is uniquely positioned to help Edina residents share their time, talents, and treasure in ways that can be life-changing – not only for students and their families, but also for those who take the time to invest themselves in the lives of our community’s students.
Afira has lived in Edina with her husband and two children for 5 years and has been involved with the community in many ways. She has served as president and treasurer of the Creek Valley PTO, was a liaison for the gifted District Advisory Council, and is currently on the board for the Edina Ed Fund. She values education and believes that everyone should have the ability to succeed, regardless of their background. She earned her Optometry degree from University of Houston.
Carolyn has a passion for non-profits and enjoys getting involved in smaller organizations where she can have an impact Her volunteer roles in the community include: Board member of Wooddale Community Nursery school, volunteer at Concord Elementary, Chair of The Blake Middle School Parent Association, and Volunteer with The United Way Women’s Council. She and her husband Bruce have lived in the community for over 20 years and have three children.
Gerry has been entrenched in Edina since moving to the community in 1977 to raiser her family in a community that values exceptional educational opportunities. In addition to raising two children and participating in the community for 37 years Gerry taught French at Blake before becoming a French Immersion teacher at Normandale Elementary in 1995. She began her career in administration as Dean of Students at Valley View Middle School in 2002. From there she became principal of a K-8 French immersion school in Kansas City, MO. She returned to the community to become principal of Park Spanish Immersion in St. Louis Park and finally cap her career as principal of Normandale Elementary School in July 2014.
Maggie McCracken is passionate about propelling mission-minded organizations. As the founder of McCracken, a marketing and communications company, Maggie brings a toolbox of marketing expertise to help turn non-profit ambitions into action. A previous Target Marketing leader, she worked for over a decade on strategic planning efforts across all of Target’s business units. Originally from Indianapolis, Maggie graduated from Indiana University with a B.A. in Journalism. Maggie, and her husband Rich, have two girls and live in the Edina community.
Kathleen’s motivation for volunteering at Edina Give and Go is based on many years of involvement with the STRIVE and Access programs at Edina High School. She observed a significant population of student son the sidelines, unable to participate in the academics, arts and athletic enriching experiences. She also serves as a board member or trustee for Trinity College; Hartford, Connecticut, College Possible Twin Cities,; Twin Cities Rise and Minneapolis Foundation, Donor Advised Fund Advisory Committee. Kathleen has been honored by the Edina Community Foundation and Connecting with Kids with a Community Leadership Award for her volunteer work with Edina Youth. She obtained her B.A. from Amherst College and her J.D. from Loyola University of Chicago School of Law.
Mary is the Director of Equity and Enrollment for Edina Public Schools. As such, she oversees the District Achievement and Integration Plan, is the district AVID director, and oversees the Title I and II programs and budget. She has been working for the district since 1987, and has held many positions during her tenure including Physical Education Teacher, Assistant Principal of Edina High School, and various positions in district administration. Mary holds her bachelor’s degree in Physical Education and Coaching from the University of Minnesota. She received her master’s in Athletic Administration from St. Thomas College, and her Educational Specialist Elementary and Secondary Principal Licensure from the University of St. Thomas. Mary is the proud mother of two girls, one who has graduated and one still attending Edina Public Schools. Mary’s contribution to the Edina Give and Go Board is critical as she is the primary liaison to the Edina Public School District, helping to ensure collaboration and alignment between both organizations.
Janet joined Edina Give and Go as the interim Treasurer in Oct. 2016. She is passionate about raising kids and ensuring access to all educational and extracurricular aspects of a students’ life. She has served in numerous capacities within the Edina Public Schools including as a PTO member at Concord Elementary and on the Board of Edina Education Fund both as Treasurer and Co-Chair. Janet and her husband, David, have lived in the community for over 15 years and has two teenage boys (one in college and one in Edina High School).
Jane is active community volunteer who currently volunteers as a mentor in the EHS Access Program and loves working with students on post-secondary planning. Prior to Edina Give and Go, Jane served as an advisor and consultant to a variety of not-for-profit organizations, advising these organization on their strategic vision and mission, organization design and fundraising strategies. Jane is interested in assisting organizations whose missions focus on serving under-resourced youth and families in the community. In addition to her work with Give and Go, Jane currently co-chairs the Middlebury College Parents Committee and is a participant in the President’s Leadership Summit. Jane graduated from Georgetown University and remains active with Georgetown as an alumni interviewer. She and her husband have three grown sons and reside in Edina.
Meg’s passion for education initiatives and community development has led her to hold several positions at various school and community organizations. Meg currently serves on the College Possible Twin Cities Board while also having previously served as Co-Chair of the Board of the Edina Education Fund. Prior to her work as a Community Volunteer, Meg worked at IBM Corporation as a Marketing Representative and Coordinator of Multi-Media Sales. Originally from Westfield, New Jersey, Meg earned a B.A in Economics and Business from Lafayette College where she still serves as an Alumni Admissions Representative. Meg and her husband, Tony, have four children and live in Edina, MN.
John was a partner with Accenture in the Communications, Media & Technology industry group working with both start-ups and Fortune 100 companies. He retired in 2010 and has spent the past five years supporting various charities and consulting in the communications industry. He graduated from Syracuse University with a B.S. in Marketing and Logistics Management, and an M.B.A. His wife, Donna, and their three children live in Edina.
Jennifer Samuel strongly believes every child deserves a good education. Previously she volunteered as a hockey coach and ESL tutor in North Minneapolis, and was the social media lead for the Beat the Odds gala. Now serves on the Morningside Neighborhood Association Steering Committee and is a host family for Edina A Better Chance. As a writer, she frequently contributes to national publications and is the author of 52 Fights.
Teri Velner stays busy raising her four children all of whom attend Edina Public Schools. She is very active within the school district and the array of activities in which her children are involved. Teri has an extensive background in public affairs and public policy at the local, state and federal levels. Teri enjoys the outdoors with her husband and children and two dogs as much as she can.
Passionate about Give and Go’s mission, Teri believes all students should have the opportunity and access to the incredible academic and enrichment experiences Edina Public Schools offers. It’s a reflection of a strong community.
Jack’s interest in Edina Give and Go stems from the belief that every child should have access to quality education as well as the ability to participate in athletics and the arts. In addition to Edina Give and Go, Jack is involved with CommonBond Communities, the Midwest’s largest provider of affordable housing, as a Study Buddy tutor, and in various leadership positions. Jack is also a junior partner with Social Venture Partners, an organization that approaches philanthropy through a venture capital model. Professionally, Jack works on a team that manages finances for intergenerational families and institutions at Merrill Lynch. After graduating from Edina High School, Jack studied at the University of Wisconsin – Madison where he earned a degree in economics. Jack serves on the Finance Committee for Edina Give and Go.
Now “retired” from the agency world of advertising and marketing,” Julie puts her passion to work through myriad volunteer positions. As an advocate for educational access and excellence, she most recently assisted Edina Give and Go with development of its strategic plan and annual community fundraiser. She also has served on the board of the Edina Education Fund and chaired the Edina Public School District’s Communications Advisory Council and Normandale Elementary’s Leadership Team. Julie also has been instrumental in creating and hosting the Vintner Ball—an annual fundraiser to benefit Second Harvest Heartland. She and her husband have two boys currently enrolled in Edina Public Schools.
Andy is presently the Platform Specialist at Push Interactive. He serves on the Frey Foundation Board as a Director. Andy graduated from EHS in 2008. Social justice has always been his passion and he wants to work to make sure that all students have the same kind of rewarding experience that he enjoyed at Edina Public Schools
Abigail has served as Edina Give and Go Executive Director since June of 2015, bringing a great deal of experience in business and education to the position. She earned her Bachelor of Arts: mass Communications Major with an emphasis on Advertising at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire, and spent a few years in advertising sales. She then found that her true passion was working with youth, so she returned to school to earn her Masters of Education: Business and Industry Education: Business and Marketing Education at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She’s taught business classes in both Minnesota and Mexico. Currently, in addition to her responsibilities as Executive Director, she serves as the Access Coordinator at Edina High School. She is passionate about helping Edina students who are economically disadvantaged.
Communications And Program Assistant
Julie Swoap has been an active volunteer in Edina Public Schools for the last 15 years serving in many capacities including PTO Co-President at Normandale Elementary School and Parent Volunteer Coordinator for Valley View Middle School Theater. She is the proud mother of 3 girls who have all attended Edina Public Schools (two have moved on to college and the other is at the high school). Julie enjoys working for Edina Give and Go behind the scenes to help all Edina students enjoy the life and learning opportunities the district offers.