Lake Zurich, IL
Lou Malnati’s Pizza
How did you come to be in Beloit?
I accepted the role of Executive Director at the Janesville Performing Arts Center in 2011, coming from a career in non-profit management in the Chicago area. I’ve lived and worked in Rock County ever since, in both Beloit and Janesville.
How long have you lived in the community?
My husband and I moved to Rock County in early 2012; 8 years in April.
What is your career background?
Believe it or not, I was a flute performance major at Northwestern University and was convinced I was going to be a studio musician in either Los Angeles or New York once I graduated. Like all good parents, my parents encouraged me to look into the business side of entertainment. I found a love in non-profit management, fundraising and marketing through this pivot to the business side of the entertainment industry.
After college, I spent the early part of my career in venue management at Ravinia, working in operations and production, while also maintaining freelance grant writing and fundraising clients. From there, I came to the Janesville Performing Arts Center as Executive Director, managing volunteers, operations, box office sales, fundraising, and everything under the sun! After having my daughter, the hours required at JPAC were not manageable with a young family, so I took a position at Blackhawk Technical College leading the foundation, marketing and public relations teams.
While at BTC, I was introduced to many leaders at Kerry, through both BTC’s culinary program as well as manufacturing training programs — and eventually, Kerry was able to recruit me into their marketing function. I’ve spend the last 4 1/2 years at Kerry, moving up the organization, now leading 40 marketers across a $4B business in North America.
Why did you accept the GBCC Board of Directors position?
I accepted the position for both personal and professional reasons. Personally, I had to step away from community service and involvement for the last 4 1/2 years while I built my career at Kerry and raised two young children. Now that I’ve acclimated in both areas — it’s now a great time to get back to giving back. Professionally, Kerry needs to be a pillar in the community.
Recently, our employee engagement survey results have told us our employees would like to see more out of Kerry in terms of our community involvement. I hope that my role on the GBCC Board can identify ways to show our employees how Kerry can be a bigger player in the Beloit community.
What special strengths do you bring to the Board?
I’m a jack-of-all-trades kind of person! Given my career has spanned both profit and non-profit industries, I have a mixed bag of tricks across volunteer management, governance, marketing and more. I’m confident that one of my tools in my tool box can help along the way — and maybe even teach me a new tool for my own development.
What goals do you hope to achieve during your term?
My goals are simple: ensure Kerry can play a role in the future success of Beloit; and to support GBCC pivot into a “new normal” in a post-COVID environment.
Which GBCC committee do you plan to serve on?
Marketing & Membership
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
I will work for food! — Nothing motivates me more than a good meal.