Jess lives outside Minneapolis in Anoka, Halloween Capital of the World and closest she could come to her small-town upbringing in rural North Dakota. Growing up, Jess participated in every sport, extracurricular activity, and academic endeavor she could get her hands on and was proud to represent her home state as 1994 Miss Teen of North Dakota. With a passion for leading, developing and inspiring young women to do big things, Jess later spent 4.5 years volunteering with the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization. It’s no mistake on the part of the universe that Jess now has 3 daughters of her own to raise; Ainsley, Kenna, and Bailey would tell you their favorite thing to do with their mom is “adventure” through the “big, big world."
Jess works in an executive leadership position in the field of HR and technology. She’s in her happy place when she’s kickboxing or running obstacle courses, and she has already introduced her young girls to the thrill of mental tenacity, physical fitness, competition, and the outdoors that comes with terrain racing. Very comfortable pushing herself outside her comfort zone, she believes young girls and women of all ages thrive when we empower each other, defy expectations, surprise even ourselves, and try big things.
Our country, the organizations in which we work and volunteer, the communities we live in are hungry for strong leadership and real change. Women have so much to offer but are still underrepresented – in executive and organizational leadership positions, in many professional fields, in our government, in thought leadership and positions of influence. We can change that – each of us. It starts within, then with those you positively influence, then with those you lead and empower.