Each year, 5 people are elected to 2-year terms on the CRC Board of Directors. Here are the candidates for the 2022 Annual Meeting:
Julie Printz (downtown resident)
I'm a lifelong fan and cheerleader of Downtown St. Paul. Currently renting in downtown, my husband and I are looking to buy property here. Since young adulthood, I've served on many boards of nonprofits for arts, educational, religious & professional organizations in roles including president, secretary, and treasurer. I've taken on many church leadership roles on committees and as council president. In 2005-2007 I was a member of a citizen action group lead by a professor of Family Social Science at the U of M working to strengthen parents and families. Throughout my daughters' education I participated in parent advisory groups for the St. Paul Public Schools. In 2021 I chaired the Pedro Park Workgroup and continue to be engaged with city leaders in that work. I'm currently working with Pedro Park volunteers and the St. Paul Parks Conservancy to establish the Friends of Pedro Park and I'm coordinating gardening activities this summer. I am a member of the Public Realm and the Downtown St. Paul: A Place to Call Home committees. I'm also in a group helping Council Member Noecker develop a new "Report Card for Ward 2." I work as a software developer for Thrivent Financial and hold a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership from St. Catherine University. My passion is to help foster a true neighborhood where residents feel connected, supported, and engaged. Other issues that concern me include addressing the physical & mental health, safety and dignity of all residents. This includes having access to public restrooms.
Jess Grams (downtown resident)
I have lived and worked in Downtown Saint Paul for 11 years, as a freelance artist and as Digital Content Coordinator for the Ordway. As a performer, director, and producer, I have worked on justice-centered film and theater projects for 20 years, focusing primarily on opera and documentary film. I led a team in Los Angeles as an assistant producer for the docuseries explore, and since 2015 have been creating docuseries Minnesota Next, examining the spectrum of displacement of marginalized peoples’ experience across the state. I have shown work most recently at Northern Spark, Off-leash Art Box in Minneapolis, and SPNN, and am currently the Artist in Residence at Luther Seminary, where I’m pursuing a Master’s in Innovation for Leadership in Ministry.
I would like to continue to explore the opportunities we have at CRC to support our evolving community in the most equitable way. I believe we can evaluate our resources and community action, resulting in the improvement and sustainability of quality of life for all of our residents.
Meredith Heneghan (downtown worker -- The M)
I’m finishing up a decade as a Saint Paul resident. As Mayor Carter will be quick to mention, Saint Paul is rich with residents who speak over 100 languages, residents dedicated to improving our city, and people who serve with humility and hope for the future. I am optimistic about what the next few years will bring to our city and happy to be working at an organization that prioritizes the immediate community in all its work. I think the CRC’s service to the community is incredibly valuable and generates well-rounded, thoughtful guidance for how we can move forward together.
Olga Nichols (downtown resident)
Olga has served as a board member for the CapitolRiver Council since 2020, and she is currently the Vice Chairwoman of the board. She has been serving in that role since 2021. Olga worked at Model Cities Safe Space shelter before she resigned in April 2022. However, Olga continues to interact with and advocate for the ever-growing unsheltered population in various communities. Subsequently, lending her listening skills and enterprising ingenuity to a diverse population by doing the action work to help rectify the numerous and complex issues that come with being unhoused. Furthermore, Olga is the Artist organizer for Central Village park. Olga’s work involves bringing people together through the Arts, food, performance, or temporary installation to build a sense of neighborliness and foster understanding of cultures and norms.
Rich Johnson (downtown worker -- Creators Space)
As a native of St Paul it’s very important to be as involved as possible in the Twin Cities. Volunteering in our community is something I’m very passionate about. I currently teach and am developing a podcast with students and staff at the High school for Recording Arts. I'm also the owner of Plug Family Management, an artist development and management business, and I'm a Creative Fellow at Creators Space.