Speaker Date Topic
Julie James Aug 11, 2020
Best Christmas Ever
Best Christmas Ever

Hello, my name is Julie James. I was born and raised in Edina and currently reside there with my family. I have been married to my high school sweetheart for 26 years and we have three sons, ages: 23, 21 and 16. My former roles include being a Kindergarten teacher in Eagan and Edina for several years, a full-time mom, and the Director of Operations for the Edina High School Football Team. I have also served as a volunteer Captain for Best Christmas Ever (BCE), past PTA Co-President at Creek Valley Elementary, as well as serving previously on the Boards of: Connecting With Kids, Edina Chemical Health Partners, Edina Boosters, and a former Council Member on the Parent Leadership Council Superintendent’s Forum.

I am absolutely thrilled to be working for the amazing nonprofit, Best Christmas Ever, as Director of Captain Success. Established in Cloquet, MN in 2011, BCE, www.bcemovement.org, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to making a long-lasting impact on families that have fallen on hard times (i.e. major illness, accident, job loss, death, house fire, etc.), due to no-fault of their own, by having volunteer Captains and their teams bless nominated families with a SURPRISE Best Christmas Ever. Families are nominated by people in their community (friends, relatives, co-workers) and then are chosen by a Captain and sponsored by local businesses and community members in support of Best Christmas Ever. Both monetary donations and individual gifts for each family member are collected for the family. This is ALL a surprise to the family when the Captain and team arrive at the family's doorstep and present the gifts at the “Drop Event” the week prior to Christmas. In addition, after the “Drop Event”, families have the opportunity to take a 9-week Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University Course and upon completion, they receive $1,000 from BCE to pay down a debt AND families also have the opportunity to take an 8-week online Health Program and upon completion, BCE will send them $1,000 in gift cards to an approved grocery store for healthy food. Last year, over 1,500 families were nominated in the US and Canada and BCE blessed 126 families, however we need more Captains to bless many more families in the future. This video highlights the Founding Story of BCE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oz8IXqWzKeA

In my role as Director of Captain Success, I have the privilege of walking alongside BCE’S Rockstar Captains to support and lead them along the way to success, as well as building community together. Additionally, there is a strong focus in my role to recruit and build the Captain Family to propel BCE to new heights. This is accomplished by sharing BCE’s story with several individuals, businesses, organizations, churches, etc. I am extremely passionate about what I believe in and I love to share that story with others! I personally experienced last year, as a Volunteer Captain, how much the Captain journey becomes an avenue to lead others to be generous with their time, gifts, and talents and how joy-filled and rewarding it is for everyone involved in the journey. In my role at BCE, I am simply sharing my story and inviting others to the generosity table to bless more families and show love in its purest form! What a complete honor it is to do exactly that each day while recruiting and supporting Captains…I absolutely love my job!

 

 

Vladimir Makatsaria and Avrum Spira Aug 18, 2020
Ethicon and BUSM
 
 
Laura Boyd Sep 01, 2020
Leadership Delta
Leadership Delta

Laura Boyd has over 25 years of experience working with organizations to help them develop sustainable growth as organizations and the people within. She has been a leader on executive teams for large companies, emerging companies and non-profits, as well as, a business owner. She believes Leadership is the ultimate Delta for change, strategy and growth in an organization. She is now taking her years of experience helping businesses become high performance organizations.

Laura has her Masters in Organizational Leadership and certification in change management. Along with her years of communications and sales success, she is perfectly suited to help any organization assess, strategize, and develop both leaders and teams for growth.

When Laura is not working with her clients, she enjoys spending time with her busy family, coaching volleyball, working out at the gym and walking her dog. One day, she will master (well, maybe not master) the piano.

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