Mapping Your Retirement

Contributor’s Bios


Mark Skeie worked for 3M Company for more than 34 years, where he held a variety of management positions. He left 3M with a broad range of skills and the desire to contribute to the community. Since completing the Advocacy Leadership for Vital Aging certificate sponsored by the Vital Aging Network (VAN) in 2004, he has focused his energy on developing tools to help people enjoy fulfilling and purposeful lives in retirement. Skeie is currently chair of VAN’s leadership group. He also is on the board of the Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging. He and Janet Skeie founded MYR, Inc., a nonprofit organization with the mission of helping individuals and organizations prepare for active, healthy, and productive retirement. Skeie earned a BA from the University of Minnesota in industrial psychology.

Janet Skeie retired from General Reinsurance in 2003 after a long career with several different companies. She became interested in the subject of retirement planning after experiencing the transition herself. She encourages others to think about meaning and purpose during the retirement phase of life, as well as the legacy they want to leave for their children and community. She completed the Advocacy Leadership for Vital Aging certificate sponsored by the Vital Aging Network (VAN) in 2006. Skeie is cofounder of MYR, Inc. She earned a BA from the University of Minnesota in psychology.

Julie Roles is the principal of J Roles & Associates. She is co-author of Civic Organizing 101 with Peg Michels, and has written and designed publications for the University of Minnesota, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, 3M, Trane, and others. She serves on the board of MYR, Inc. and Civic Organizing Foundation. Roles operates a full-service communications company and provides services to a broad range of businesses and nonprofit organizations. Roles has a BS in business administration and an MA in visual communications/applied design from the University of Minnesota.


Carol Daly was state director for Minnesota Elderhostel at the University of Minnesota’s College of Continuing Education for 23 years. During her tenure, Daly served on the International Elderhostel Board of Directors and on the National Steering Committee of Elderhostel State Directors. She has spoken at numerous national and local conferences and has written dozens of articles for Minnesota publications. She serves on the board of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and was a member of the first leadership group of the Vital Aging Network, both at the University of Minnesota. Daly received a BA in English from Cornell University and an MA in adult education from the University of Minnesota.

Trish Herbert, a retired psychologist, is the author of The Vintage Journey: A Guide to Artful Aging. During her career, she created and led a program for community elderly that specialized in issues of aging, caregiving, self-care, grief, and adult children’s concerns about their aging parents. She also cofounded a small company, Journeywell, and presently works as a counselor, volunteer, support group leader, and workshop facilitator. Herbert has a PhD in psychology and gerontology.

Jan Hively is a senior fellow in the College of Continuing Education at the University of Minnesota. She is the founder of and senior advisor for the Vital Aging Network (VAN), a statewide network shaping a multigenerational, strengths-based vision of aging. Hively teaches courses at the University of Minnesota on lifework after retirement and education for midlife and beyond. She earned a BA from Harvard University and an MA and a PhD from the University of Minnesota.

Helen Kivnick is a professor of social work at the University of Minnesota. She was trained as a clinical psychologist and has focused on healthy life cycle development and intercultural relations. In Vital Involvement in Old Age, Kivnick collaborated with developmentalist Erik Erikson to adapt his theory of psychosocial development to be more useful in promoting psychosocial health and strength for people at each stage of the life cycle. Kivnick has spearheaded the development of Vital Involvement Practice (VIP) as a way to improve elders’ personal vitality and community engagement, despite physical frailties and needs for assistance. She is the founder and executive director of CitySongs, an after-school program for urban youth that combines strength-based social work and music participation activities to promote children’s health and community vitality. Kivnick has an MA and a PhD from the University of Michigan.

Sue Meyers spent more than 30 years as a family sociologist with the University of Minnesota Extension Service. She is an active member of the Minnesota Council of Family Relations and the National Council of Family Relations. She is past president of the Minnesota Council. Meyers has an MS from Iowa State University. She has been a member of the Minnesota Gerontological Society from its inception and a longtime member of the Gerontological Society of America and the American Society on Aging.


Susan Bradley is a freelance writer with a research background in health care delivery. She directed a two-year study for InterStudy on rural health care delivery in Minnesota and Oregon and participated in research on HMOs and outcomes management. She worked for Health Partners, a start-up HMO serving rural Minnesota through local providers and the University of Minnesota. Her publications include journal articles and several book chapters on the topic of rural health care. Bradley has a BS and an MS from Cornell University.

Luke Carlson is an American College of Sports Medicine–certified health and fitness instructor and the CEO of Discover Strength Personal Fitness Center, Inc. He coauthored The Female Athlete: Train for Success and is the founder and director of the National Strength and Science Seminar. Carlson received a BS in kinesiology from the University of Minnesota, where he is currently a graduate student in exercise physiology. He has served as the strength and conditioning assistant with the Minnesota Vikings.

Catherine Johnson is a licensed psychologist who provides services to older-adult health care providers through the Associated Clinic of Psychology and the Dementia Identification Project, a grant project administered by the Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging. Johnson has more than 30 years of health care experience, serving in administrative positions in private and public health care centers. She has served on state and national committees to create and improve health care delivery systems. Johnson received a PsyD from St. Thomas University specializing in older-adult development and completed a long-term care administration licensure program at the University of Minnesota.

Mary Jo Kreitzer is the founder and director of the Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of Minnesota, where she conducts NIH-funded research and teaches graduate courses in complementary therapies and healing practices. She is an associate professor in the University’s School of Nursing and the author of numerous publications for health professionals and consumers. She speaks nationally and internationally on topics related to health and well-being. Kreitzer earned a BA and an MA in nursing and a PhD in health services research. She is vice-chair of the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine, an association of 36 medical schools in North America.

Arthur Leon is the Henry L. Taylor Professor of Exercise Science, director of the Laboratory of Physiological Hygiene and Exercise Science, and director of graduate studies in the University of Minnesota’s School of Kinesiology. He teaches graduate courses on nutrition and exercise and holds joint academic appointments in the School of Public Health, the Medical School, and in Food Science and Nutrition. For 40 years, Leon’s research has focused on the effects of physical activity, diet, prescription drugs, and heredity on cardiovascular health. He earned a BS in chemistry from the University of Florida, and MS and MD degrees from the University of Wisconsin. He is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine, the American College of Cardiology, and the American Society for Nutritional Sciences. Leon is a retired colonel in the Medical Corps of the United States Army Reserve.


Mark Fischer, a Certified Financial Planner, is president of Fischer on Finance, a fee-based financial planning firm. He has taught at universities in Minnesota, Massachusetts, and California, and has presented seminars with numerous organizations and associations. Fischer has an MBA and a PhD in chemistry. He is a registered principal of Multi-Financial Securities Corporation (MFSC) and a member of NASD/SIPC. MFSC is not affiliated with Fischer on Finance.

Karen Hansen is an attorney with Felhaber Larson Fenlon & Vogt, in St. Paul, Minnesota. For more than 20 years, she has focused her legal career in the areas of estate planning and probate and trust administration. She is chair of the firm’s estate planning and probate section. Hansen has worked with thousands of individuals, families, and businesses in planning their estates and implementing the estate plan after the death of a client, and she teaches advanced estate planning to financial professionals. Hansen earned a BA and a JD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Other Contributors

Sharon Roe Anderson is a consultant and serves as a strategist and coach in the areas of leadership, strategic change, facilitation, and community and organizational development. Anderson has 29 years of experience developing programs for people at all levels in the educational, political, community, and business arenas. Her background includes extensive public affairs work in executive and professional development, international and intercultural relationships, and leadership education. She is coauthor of Leadership for the Common Good Fieldbook: Tools for Working in a Shared-Power World (2003) and Facilitation Resources (1999). Anderson developed and taught in the Advocacy Leadership for Vital Aging Certificate Program at the University of Minnesota. She has served as principal and cofounder of Aurora Consulting; director of Professional Development Programs, the Reflective Leadership Center, and the International Fellows Programs at the Humphrey Institute, University of Minnesota. Anderson earned a BA from St. Olaf College and an MA from the University of Minnesota.

Karen Bowen worked with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources for 20 years, eight as assistant commissioner. Bowen retired in 2000 after nine years as director of operations with the Suburban Hennepin Regional Park District. She is past president of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute of the University of Minnesota.

Karen Greer has over 20 years of experience engaging individuals and groups as they create a compelling lifestyle for their future and view their “retirement as opportunity.” She has been featured on cable television and in a Women’s Business MN magazine article about meaningful retirement issues. She teaches retirement-related coursework through community education programs and the University of Minnesota College of Continuing Education. Greer’s credentials include certifications in Empowerment Life Coaching and the Too Young to Retire concept, training by the Purpose Project, as well as an MA in adult education.

Judy Schuck is the retired Dean of Students at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. Since retiring, she has worked part time as an educational consultant most recently for the General College at the University of Minnesota. Schuck earned her PhD in educational psychology from the University of Minnesota. She currently serves as the chair of the curriculum committee for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Minnesota.


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“An indispensable planning tool to help navigate the second half of your life. This easy-to-use workbook will help ensure a happy, healthy, and wise retirement.”

—Jan Cullinane, author of The New Retirement: The Ultimate Guide to the Rest of Your Life

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