2017 Minnesota Bonsai Society Board of Directors
President - Sue Krueger
Sue was introduced to bonsai by her husband, Dale. After years of checking out the bonsai at Como, the Minnesota State Fair and Spring Home and Garden Show, she wasn't convinced it was a good idea. Bonsai seemed like plant torture to the life-long gardener. It wasn't until she saw a wonderful collection of trees in White Bear Lake that she began to see bonsai in a new way. It seemed a natural extension to her gardens and now she's a firm believer. Since becoming a member of the society in 2000, Sue served as Newsletter editor for 4 years and as a committee member for the Mother's Day Show, Members' Tour and Picnic, General Meetings and State Fair Show. In addition to bonsai, she also enjoys gardening, cooking for large groups, camping with her nieces, kayaking, hunting for stones and collecting Ponderosa pines in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
First Vice President - Dale Krueger, General Meetings
Interested in bonsai for many years, Dale took every opportunity he could to learn more. After becoming a MBS member is 2000 he served on the board for 8 years as Mother's Day Show, Winter Banquet, Members' Tour and Picnic Chairs and 1st Vice President. He also served on the 30th Anniversary committee. Currently in his third year of study at Bonsai Mirai, he's excited to share what he's learned. When he isn't working on trees, Dale also enjoys house improvement projects, camping, kayaking, collecting trees and stones in South Dakota and Northern Minnesota, a good single malt scotch and is in the process of renewing his interest in ceramics.
2nd Vice President - Tim McCarthy
After taking the Novice Workshop in September 2011, Tim became a member of MBS. He's quite happy that his first tree is still alive and well. He's also jumped right in by volunteering and many events and is serving for a second year on the board. A software engineer manager by trade, Tim's other interests include reading, hiking, camping and anything else that gets him outdoor. In the future, he would like to help novice enthusiasts to keep their trees alive so they stay active in bonsai.
Treasurer - Eric Lampland
Owner of Lookout Point Communications, Eric became a member of MBS in In Zen practice there is a mediation practice called "art practice." Two of the areas that were of particular interest to him were bonsai and calligraphy. In the late 1990's he facilitated a meditation practice class around bonsai. Although he had no knowledge of the art, much less the meditative practice, he came to find that he was taken with bonsai. After experiencing the initial frustration of ignorance, he found quiet and lately, he has seen beauty emerge from his experiences. He has many other interests which include technology, Japanese gardening, philosophy, physics and the behaviors of people in politics and life. He finds that the society is oriented around bonsai display, or the external aspects of bonsai. His focus is more internal. It is the connection with nature and the quiet, meditative state of mind that attends working with the trees. He's not sure how MBS could bring that to others, but is sure that each of us has had that meditative experience.
Secretary - Dick Miller
Retired from the U of M Dining Services, Dick as been a member since 2003.One of his sons saw the Bonsai exhibit at the State Fair and talked him about it. After attending the Novice Workshop a few weeks later, they joined as a family. Dick is an active member on his church's council for 38 years, serving on several committees. He would like to see the reputation of the Minnesota Bonsai society grow to the point that our Master Artists are the ones who are invited to other parts of the country to give Workshops.
Director - Scott Vanderlinde, Library
Scott Vanderlinde has been working in the engineering field for 25 years. In 2011 he joined the Minnesota Bonsai Society because he likes to plant trees and watch them grow. Having held multiple leadership positions in the Boys Scouts of America, he plans to encourage more members to get involved by volunteering. His interests include Z scale model trains, reading, hiking and backpacking.
Director - Greg Mevissen, Special Projects
Greg Mevissen has been a physician at North Memorial Hospital since 1990. Having participated in leadership positions in the medical field, he feels drawn to work for a not-for-profit organization where everyone is happily pursuing their interests. He was inspired to pursue bonsai by the State Fair exhibit and found the challenging mix of art and horticulture attractive. Greg enjoys his family and his work, he studies Zen and appreciates good guacamole, vegetarian cooking – especially in cast iron skillets. Having participated in a collecting trip (which he hosted), a study group, Novice workshop, Bonsai Basics and Intermediate class he’s ready to learn more about the art and horticulture techniques needed to create great trees. He’s also looking forward to developing good friendships with the fascinating people who are interested in bonsai.
Director - Kevin Myers, Social Events
A member since 2012, Kevin first saw bonsai at the local Buddhist Temple where he grew up. He became more interested during high school after looking through a book on bonsai. He styled his first tree in 1985 and worked with different species from the Pacific Northwest, namely, Douglas Fir, Red Alder, Western Hemlock and Western Red Cedar. He worked for Patio Town in North St. Paul as their "Bonsai Technician" when they were experimenting with retail bonsai in 1992 and 1993. He is most interested in working with North American tree species as bonsai, and feels that many native species have good potential as bonsai. A mail service specialist with DTI, Inc., Kevin is also interested in Historical re-enactments, foreign languages, linguistics and botany.
Director - John Falenschek
John has been interested in the Japanese culture, architecture, and architectural landscaping since his 20's. Having had just a couple of Bonsai over the course of some time, with poor results, he eventually took a beginners course that enriched his knowledge and experience. Just becoming a member in 2016 he is looking forward to serving on the board. He is excited to continue with Bonsai as a way to enrich his and others everyday lives.
Director - Joyce Nelson Shellhart
Joyce first became interested in bonsai in high school when she began working for a florist and saw her first "tiny tree" and continued to work at a greenhouse throughout college. Joyce was a high school art teacher until MS forced early retirement, but continued to teach and keep involved with art. Like everyone, life has led her down roads she didn't always expect; social entrepreneur, author, professional speaker and a family caregiver. Recently, Joyce realized that if she ever wanted to explore bonsai she better get started-the trees will only be reaching their peak before her! Joyce enjoys working with this living art form immensely it allows her to relax and spend hours working with her trees. She is delighted to find so many wonderful people that are willing to share their ideas and knowledge with novices.
Director - Bill Maher
Bill first experienced bonsai after attending an adult education course on the Art of Bonsai. As part of the course you were able to create your own bonsai and take it home. I was hooked. Joined MBS in 2002 to continue learning and developing the skills needed to create quality bonsai trees. Retired from Scherer Brothers Lumber, working in management. Enjoy golf, fishing, hiking, most all outdoor activities, reading, bonsai and spending time with my grandchildren. Look forward to serving on the board.
Director - Celina Blandford
A member since 2015, Celina discovered Bonsai first-hand upon visiting the International Buddhist Temple near Vancouver, Canada. She's been hooked ever since. Working as Senior Designer for a local Minneapolis company, Celina was drawn at first to the design-side of bonsai. However, soon after joining MBS, she’s really come to appreciate and enjoy the techniques horticultural knowledge she’s learned from others. Celina hopes to improve her abilities and help MBS continue as a valuable resource for beginners and enthusiasts alike.