Andy hails from Decorah, and is happy to be back "home" with his family. He is a class of 87 DHS grad, and his college and graduate work focused on ecology and natural resources management. The past couple decades he has worked in sustainable agriculture and natural resources management, first in the Peace Corps in Guatemala, then with USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and most recently upon returning to the family farm near Decorah. His current passions of the Energy District and land-care farming are kept in perspective, and motivated by, his wife and three amazing daughters.
Communications and Engagement Specialist
Heidi is thrilled to be back in renewable energy work after taking some time to learn in the local foods world. Originally from the St. Paul suburbs, she currently lives in Spring Grove with her growing flock of Katahdin-Dorper sheep.
Paul joins Winneshiek Energy District with a background in teaching and carpentry. For the last seven years Paul was a high school industrial tech teacher in Lanesboro, MN. There he taught carpentry, cabinetmaking, electricity, engineering design, graphic design, CAD, entrepreneurship, and more generally, enjoyed helping youngsters grow into capable and confident young adults.
Prior to teaching, Paul spent several years as a carpenter disassembling and reconstructing 19th century Norwegian-built log buildings for clients. He also worked several seasons for HistoriCorps, a non-profit that pairs volunteers with hands-on historic preservation projects throughout the mountain west.
In his free time Paul enjoys making furniture, trail running with his dog Bobo, scheming backpacking trips out west, camping in his homemade teardrop camper, and rehabbing his 170 year old brick house.
Nina’s past business experiences include starting a local Visitor Center, a radio station and a diversity team and chairing an ethnic festival for 8 years. She has also served on the board for Winneshiek County Economic Development, Good Samaritan Center, Country Heritage Community and KPVL Radio, to name a few. Nina has also been inducted into the NICC Alumni Hall of Fame. With a love of helping others, Nina brings a vast amount of knowledge to help other’s business grow.
With a degree in accounting, continued Fast Trac training by the Kauffman Foundation of Kansas City, Mo., the SBDC and 27 years of work experience Nina provides knowledge on the importance of planning. As a Pro Advisor with Quick Books, accounting and payroll, services are provided as needed for individual businesses and nonprofits.
Board of Directors
Lyle retired from Northeast Iowa Community College's Computer Information Systems Director position in 2010 and from organic farming in 2017. He and his wife Susan live in Decorah. In addition to serving on the Winneshiek Energy District Board since 2014, his Board experience includes 12 years on the South Winneshiek Community School Board, 6 years on the Calmar Lutheran Church Council, 6 years on the Oneota Community Food Co-op Board, the Board of the Sustainable Iowa Land Trust since 2018, and as Assistant Winneshiek County Soil & Water Conservation Commissioner since 1980. Lyle and Susan do volunteer tax preparation through the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program, sponsored locally by NE Iowa RSVP.
In recent years, while living on Lyle's family farm, the Luzums installed geothermal and solar to reduce their energy use and carbon footprint. They donated their farm in 2017 to the Sustainable Iowa Land Trust.
Jim Martin-Schramm has been a member of the religion faculty at Luther College since 1993. He is the author or co-editor of several publications including Eco-Reformation: Grace and Hope for a Planet in Peril (Wipf & Stock, 2016), Earth Ethics: A Case Method Approach (Orbis Books, 2015), and Climate Justice: Ethics, Energy, and Climate Policy (Fortress Press, 2010). Jim served on the inaugural board of the Iowa Wind Energy Association and recently completed serving a term as chair of the board of Iowa Interfaith Power & Light. Jim directs energy and climate programming for Luther’s Center for Sustainable Communities and serves on the board of Luther College Wind Energy Project, LLC.
Wendy was a member of the Luther College Biology department for 42 years. Since her retirement in 2013, she has enjoyed more involvement with community organizations. Wendy is currently the chair fo the Winneshiek County Zoning Commission, enjoys helping folks complete their income tax returns as a Tax Aide for RSVP, volunteers weekly at the Oneota Food Co-op and is actively involved with Oneota Weavers Guild. As a member of the county's zoning commission, she was fortunate to be able to contribute to the Winneshiek County Comprehensive Smart PLan and to the current Winneshiek County Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision Regulations.
Larry served as President and Chairman of Decorah Bank & Trust Company for 30 years. He has been the owner and joint developer of a 900 KW wind turbine project and two solar projects totaling 1.1 MW and lives on a sustainable rotationally-grazed grass farm that uses wind, solar and geothermal energy. Larry has served on several community service boards and works to develop additional community-based clean energy and energy efficiency and local foods projects. He currently serves on boards of Seed Savers Exchange, Winneshiek Energy District, Oneota Film Festival and Decorah Power.
Kyra Bellrichard, a resident of Decorah, is Program Manager Lead for the Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) Business and Community Solutions team. She joined the Winneshiek Energy District (WED) board in March of 2015. However, Kyra’s relationship with WED began four years earlier when she started her career at NICC coordinating energy efficiency and renewable energy training programs with the Department of Labor ‘Green’ Grant, as well as the State of Iowa Energy Sector Partnership Grant. Both grants supported WED efforts with equipment and training, and trained many other area professionals. Kyra also manages Career Pathway Certificate programs and Trades & Industry Continuing Education classes at NICC. Outside of the college you will often find Kyra throwing pottery in her home studio or helping others experience the art of clay as a volunteer Studio Assistant at The Clay Studio.
Dave Carlson is president of Randd Properties and serves on the Winneshiek County Medical Center Foundation and Winneshiek Energy District boards in addition to the Luther College Regent Emeriti. Past distinctions and activities have included being a chairman for the National Asphalt Paving Association, past president of the Iowa Concrete Paving Association, past president of the Asphalt paving association of Iowa, board of directors for Associated General Contractors of Iowa, founding director of the Decorah Area Foundation, president for Winneshiek County Habitat for Humanity, and past president for Oneota Golf and Country Club. Dave is a graduate of Luther College (1963) and now resides in Decorah with his wife Brenda.
Kristine Kopperud Jepsen
Kristine Kopperud Jensen is a writer and editor with a background in magazine, small-business start-up, and marketing. For 15 years, she ran farm-based businesses in Allamakee County and comes to the WED board with interest in corporate and municipal energy policy, as well as adaptation of sustainable energy systems at the industrial level.
She also has experience writing and administering grants for both small business and non-profits (including WED) and looks forward to telling the broader story of where our energy comes from and how the industry works. She can be reached via www.kristinekopperud.com.
Zachary Fromm graduated from Coe College in 2004. He has been teaching social studies since 2012 at the secondary level. Fromm loves teaching through advocacy and has helped guide students to fund numerous wells in multiple countries throughout Africa. Fromm joins our board with excitement about the future of sustainable energy at the local level. In particular, he geeks the electric vehicle revolution and, as a quasi-early adopter, wants to share the experience and benefits of EVs. Fromm also sits on the Winneshiek County Historical Preservation Commission.
Mike is a Commercial Lender and Vice President at greenpenny, a division of Decorah Bank & Trust. Mike was an Ag and Commercial Lender for 10 years before transitioning to greenpenny full time in 2021. He has been financing solar and renewable energy projects for 8 years, most recently financing commercial and industrial, PPA, and Community Solar Garden projects. Mike lives in Decorah with his wife Carol and children Nora, Emily, and Sam.
An Iowa native, Megan has lived in Decorah for the last decade. She joined the Luther College Development team in 2018, and currently works as the Director of Annual Giving.
Megan’s background is in fundraising and community development. Before coming to Luther, she worked on sustainable agriculture and rural economic development initiatives in Iowa, Minnesota, and California. She serves on the City of Decorah Planning and Zoning Commission, and is active - literally and figuratively—in the community—co-coordinating the annual Fourth of July Pulpit to Pulpit 5K Fundraiser, and organizing an unofficial broomball league to make the most of the Iowa winters.
Green Iowa AmeriCorps
Maddison MacDonald, GIA Audit Coordinator
Maddison comes to the Winneshiek Energy District through Green Iowa AmeriCorps, making this her first step into her career. She is currently studying Environmental Science, and while she is relatively new to Decorah, she is passionate about this community and hopes to make a lasting and beneficial impact on Winneshiek county.
Phone: 563-382-4207 ext 2
Matt Novotny, GIA Education Coordinator
Matt Novotny is our new Education Coordinator. He is from Rochester Minnesota. Matt graduated from Luther College with a degree in Psychology. He love Decorah, Basketball, and being outside.