In the News

FY2023 Community Champions Awards

The MENTOR Network Charitable Foundation is pleased to announce its Community Champions for its second quarter of FY23. These employees were nominated by their colleagues and are being recognized for their work with local nonprofit organizations, where they dedicate their time and talents to improve quality of life for their communities. The Champions’ chosen nonprofits received a $2500 grant from the Foundation.

Linda Torkelson, Talent Acquisition Administrator, CSS MA
Windom Area Youth Hockey Association, on behalf of the Jamie Torkelson Fallen Biker Memorial Run

Linda Torkelson has worked for Sevita for over 40 years. When Linda’s son was killed on his motorcycle in 2005, she and her family and friends began organizing and hosting a memorial motorcycle ride annually in honor of her son. He memorial ride supports the Windom Area Youth Hockey Association. Over the last 18 years the event has donated over $180,000 to the organization.

Linda Hanson, DSP, CSS MN
Adaptive Recreational Services New Ulm, MN

Linda Hanson was nominated by multiple colleagues for her dedication to her community and to Adaptive Recreational Services. She dedicates time to give individuals an opportunity to do many fun activities offered by the nonprofit organization.

Laura Swedzinski, Regional Director, CSS MN
Minneota First Responders Group Inc

About 15 years ago Minneota, MN was looking for people to become EMTs and Laura volunteered. In 2019, the municipality decided to no longer have a staffed ambulance. The city, another local EMT, and Laura created the Minneota First Responders service. This volunteer group became certified, and now work with the local hospital to run a successful First Responder group. Laura acts as Co-Director.

Danielle Washburn, Program Director, CSS MN
Southeast Minnesota Toys for Tots

Danielle travels, promotes, collects, and distributes toys to families that are not fortunate to be able to provide around the holidays every year. She works throughout the year to collect and promote the program.

Melissa Allen, Billing Authorization and Administration Associate, CFS MA
Elks Lodge in Plymouth, MA

Melissa is a member of her local Elks Lodge. Recently, Melissa began organizing regular trivia nights to raise money for the club, which is donated back to the community through events and scholarships.

Maxcine Keller, Area Director, CSS IA
Christian Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church

Maxcine is an active volunteer and member of Christian Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church. She has serves as the president of the Usher Board and volunteers in the kitchen for the holidays and funerals, and at its food pantry.

John Erickson, Maintenance Associate, CSS MN
Elks Lodge #1166 in Faribault MN

John volunteers with his local Elks Lodge to support the community including fundraising for children to attend camp for free; planning Christmas parties for kids in need; picking up trash off the highway; assisting Veterans’ events and hospital visitations, and leading events for people with disabilities.

Wesley Bush, Family-Based Program Supervisor, CFS PA
Lehigh Valley Phantoms Charities

Wesley and his wife Renee dedicate hours of their time in their roles of coach and equipment managers of the Lehigh Valley Phantoms special needs and sled hockey teams. These teams afford children with developmental and physical disabilities the chance to play hockey in a safe and rewarding environment.