Friends of
Hunt Hill Audubon Sanctuary
(FOHHAS)

The Friends of Hunt Hill Audubon Sanctuary (FOHHAS), following the wishes of donor Frances Andrews, manages the operations and facilities of Hunt Hill.

PAUL CHASE, BOARD PRESIDENT

Growing up in Ashland, I lived on the outskirts of town, an easy walk to farms, creeks, woods, and vales. Winter and summer, my friends and I would go up to the “crick” to explore, sled, ski, snowshoe, and play. Once we played junior engineers and dammed up the creek. The farmer who owned the property at that point admonished us not to do it again–but he never told us not to play there.

I see Hunt Hill as a sort of adult version of that young person’s paradise. A place to encounter the natural world and learn its secrets and enjoy its wonders. As a lifelong educator, I am looking forward to working with the Hunt Hill board and staff as they strive to preserve and enhance this remarkable oasis as a site for engaging young and old with the science and beauty of nature.

BOB PAPENDIECK, VICE PRESIDENT

Bob is a 20+ year resident of Birchwood, WI and has been a long-time volunteer at Hunt Hill, serving many roles such as trail guardian, event helper, tent erector, educator, and program
attendee.

He retired from Andersen Windows in 2016 following a 40+ year career in management in the areas of Manufacturing, Logistics, and Health Care. Bob is the father of 3 daughters and has 4 grandchildren.

He recently completed his second term as the Church Council President at Long Lake Lutheran Church in Sarona and is honored to represent both Hunt Hill and the Board of Directors at many events – Beasts and Beer, Pints on the Prairie, Winter Solstice Luminary hikes, the Golf Scramble, and others. Bob also serves on the Membership and Facilities Committees at Hunt Hill.

CRAIG FOWLER, TREASURER & FINANCE CHAIR

I grew up in northern Illinois and at an early age loved heading to Wisconsin for the outdoors. These adventures included attending a YMCA camp in East Troy for five summers, family vacations to Lac du Flambeau, and visiting my best friend’s cabin in Hayward.

In 1998 my wife and I decided to move our family to Rice Lake to work and live in this wonderful community.

I retired in 2020 from Northwood Technical College (WITC) as a vice president where I wore several hats, including being the executive director of the college’s foundation for several years.

Hunt Hill is a very unique place. I love hiking and snowshoeing the trails, and look forward to attending many of the educational opportunities that are offered. I’ve been on several boards within our community, but Hunt Hill’s is special.

PAULA KODESH, SECRETARY

I am a resident of Rice Lake and am married to Ray Kodesh. I am the mother of three children and grandmother to ten.

I am licensed as an RN and retired in 2019 after working 40 years in the area, the last 24 years as a school nurse. I am also a small business owner, managing Southside Laundry in Rice Lake since 1984.

I have a personal connection to Hunt Hill in that Frances Andrews was a family friend of my grandmother. I appreciate the legacy and want to see its success continue to grow.

I joined the Board in 2020. I am the Secretary on the Executive Committee and am on the Fundraising Committee, but enjoy helping out with other needs as well.

I have a cabin on Long Lake and enjoy the silent sports, especially my kayak and SUP. My other hobbies include hiking, camping, biking, cross-country skiing, cooking and reading.

ROB BUEHLER

Rob and his wife have been married and lived in Rice Lake for 36 years. They have three grown children and four grandchildren.

He was with Northwest Builders Inc. a local commercial construction company for 28 years and served as owner for 19 of those years until he retired eight years ago.

He is an avid outdoorsman and loves to share it with youth. He belongs to a number of other boards as well as mentors youth in learning to hunt and learn to shoot events.

He is looking forward to helping out at Hunt Hill using his experience in construction and business as well as volunteering to work with youth and learn about the outdoors.

CAROLYN CLEVELAND, FUNDRAISING CHAIR

Carolyn moved to Madge with her husband, Dave, in 2002.

She quickly became involved with Hunt Hill, joining the Board of Directors in 2006. Over her many years of involvement, she has served as Secretary, Fundraising Chair, Program Chair, Vice Chair and President. She currently serves as the Fundraising Chair. 

She is retired from a career in interior design and has put her talents to work serving on the Building Committee and the remodeling of the cabins. In 2017, she and Dave offered the Million Dollar Match and in 2019 we successfully established an endowment thanks to their efforts and support. After a mandatory year off the board (board members can serve 2 consecutive terms of 3-years and then must be off for at least one year), she rejoined in 2021, stating “A year off the Board is too long.”

GARY ERICKSON, FACILITIES CHAIR

My wife Cathie and I became Stone Lake residents in 2005 after 25 years of cabin ownership in western Washburn County. Cathie and I love the outdoors and have dedicated much of our retirement years to volunteering for environmental causes.

I am a retired Civil Engineer who worked across the discipline, from design to construction and administration, and in both the private and public sectors.

I served on the FOHHAS board for 6 years prior to 2019 and I chaired the Facilities Committee for 5 of those years. I will continue as chair of Facilities during my current Board term and volunteer where needed.

 Hunt Hill is a gem that I have been honored to be associated with and I look forward to their continued success and growth.

THOM GERST

I spent the bulk of my years in the Twin Cities going to school, getting a degree in biology, finishing med school and working as a family medicine physician in the same clinic for 32 years before retiring at the end of 2016.

Since I was five years old I’ve enjoyed NW Wisconsin as “the fun place” where weekends were spent at a cabin near the Namekagon River just south of Cable. Fortunately, we had the outdoors in which to entertain ourselves without any competition from the internet and TV programming was so meager that it could be exhausted quickly.

After retiring, my wife (Cindy) and I moved eight miles west of Spooner on the Yellow River. I have traveled extensively and enjoyed photography, hiking and mountaineering on six continents. I love the Boundary Waters and have skied the Birkie 24 times. More recently, I was excited to take one of the Wisconsin Master Naturalist Volunteer Training week-long classes and look forward to taking advanced classes and continuing my education.

I’m excited to be a part of Hunt Hill’s board and am committed to its mission.

JANICE HOVEY

Janice's family has been in the area for almost 5 generations and she has been spending summers at the south end of Long Lake all of her life.  She spent three of those summers working at Hunt Hill, in the bookstore and as the waterfront instructor. Those summers had an impact and left her with many new connections to the community and an enduring appreciation for learning about and protecting our beautiful Northwoods and waters. She is a long time supporter of Hunt Hill and she and her children enjoyed participating in many of the programs while spending summers at the lake.

She is an artist and recently retired visual arts educator for grades K – 8 and a former graphic designer.  She is an active cyclist, swimmer and cross-country skier and loves spending time kayaking and walking in the woods.

She is hoping to introduce more arts programming to Hunt Hill for both kids and adults and is looking forward to serving and meeting new people.

JOHNIECE JOHNSON, PROGRAM CHAIR

Ten years ago Johniece hiked Hunt Hill while camping in the area. She was impressed by the primitive state of the woods and immediately became a member.

She and her husband changed their retirement plans and moved to Sarona to be closer to family and Hunt Hill!

She enjoys working as an Environmental Educator and sharing her enthusiasm for preserving nature with school children, volunteering and attending many of the programs. If you’ve attended events in the past 4 years, you’ve likely seen her in the audience or helping out.

SUE LUEDTKE

Sue is a retired RN and a resident of Long Lake with her husband, Jim.

Her experiences at Hunt Hill began 25+ years ago as she brought her young kids to a wonderful variety of activities, programs, day camps, scouting events, etc. They continue to enjoy Hunt Hill’s events, programs and trails.

Sue says, “It truly has been exciting to see the growth and success of Hunt Hill over the years and I am eager to have the opportunity to help out and give back!”

TOM NELSON

Visits to Washburn County began for me thirty-seven years ago when my family and I bought a lake home on Long Lake. The first view of the lake after we make the three-hour drive from our home in Medina, Minnesota continues to thrill us after all these years.

As a board member for Hunt Hill, I bring over 45 years of business experience to the table. I started in the manufacturer’s rep business in 1972, and in 1980, started my own firm. Retirement allows me to pursue other areas of interest, including spending more time with my wife Deb, our three children who live near and far, and with our five grandchildren, each of whom love our lake home paradise as much as we do.

Having attended Cakes at the Lake with our kids and grandkids over the years, being on the board with Hunt Hill seems like the perfect opportunity to get involved and help make a difference to our beautiful summer community.

SUSAN RITCHIE

Susan is a retired CPA and resident of Bear Lake (Barron County), currently serving on the Finance Committee for Hunt Hill.

She has experience serving on other non-profit Boards, including a camp/conference center in MN where she also served as Treasurer. Currently she serves as Treasurer for her church; served in the past as Treasurer and Board member for the Bear Lake Association, and is currently a member (past Treasurer) of the Rice Lake Rotary Club.

She enjoys being outdoors, especially hiking, biking, water sports, gardening, skiing and snow-shoeing.

WILLIAM STEWART, MEMBERSHIP CHAIR

Bill is a life-long resident of Spooner with experience in printing, publishing, IT (before it was called IT), HR and marketing. His wife Katherine served as president in the 90’s and has provided pro bono legal services. Their sons Rob and Will were both campers and educators at Hunt Hill.

He served on the board 2008-14 and 2016-22 during which he served two years as president focusing on strengthening the committee system in use, and as secretary structuring board communication with agendas and minutes. He sees term limits and rotation of leadership as important factors in Hunt Hill’s success.

“Coupled with its superb staff and a vital mission, Hunt Hill is a great experience for campers and volunteers alike.”