206-2017 MVMC Board of Directors
Our Board includes members at large from the chorale and from the community. Each Board member is elected by the membership of MVMC at our annual Membership Meeting the Monday following our final spring concert, 7:00PM at Grace Lutheran Church in Apple Valley, MN. We encourage all members, donors, and any interested parties to attend the meeting.
Minutes from all Board meetings are available, upon request, through the secretary of the Board of Directors. Each Board member serves a three year term and is eligible to serve as many terms as they are re-elected for. The executive seats are elected by the Board on an annual basis at the first Board meeting following the membership meeting. The artistic director of The Minnesota Valley Men's Chorale serves as an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors.
Garret Pratt, President
Garret Pratt is a founding member of the Minnesota Valley Men’s Chorale, has served on the MVMC Board of Directors as President and Vice President, is a member of the Tenor II section and has been Section Leader of the Tenor sections. Garret began singing with Judy Sagen in 1977 and started singing with Steve Boehlke as a sophomore in the Rosemount Concert and Chamber choirs in 1981. Garret worked towards a Music Education – Vocal degree at UW-Eau Claire where he sang with the Statesmen and at the U of M where he sang with Kathy Romey and the U of M Concert Choir. Garret also is a member of the Canticle Choir, Praise Team and Bells of Joy bell choir at St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Eden Prairie. Garret spent six years in the United States Marine Corps as Military Police and as a Marksmanship Instructor. Garret now works for Makita Power Tools as the Market Service Manager for the state of Minnesota. A great joy of Garret’s is singing with his son Josh Pratt as part of MVMC!
Andy Cossette, VICE PRESIDENT
Andy Cossette is a founding member of the Minnesota Valley Men’s Chorale, serves on the MVMC Board of Directors, and takes pride in singing the lowest notes in the choir in the Bass II Section. Andy began singing at church during middle and high school and joined Mr. B’s Concert Choir his Junior and Senior years. In college Andy sung in two ensembles while at UW-Eau Claire, Concert Choir and the Singing Statesmen. He toured Italy and Austria with the Singing Statesmen, singing in the Vatican, Salzburg, and Vienna. Andy works for the Hartford as a Commercial Lines Underwriter specializing in Technology and Life Science. In his spare time Andy is often found on the golf course or on his deck grilling up something delicious.
BILL STEPHENSON, Treasurer
Bill is a founding member of MVMC and of the Board of Directors. A lifelong choir singer, he has had the good fortune of singing under the direction of some of the best: Jon Peterson, Dale Warland, Dr. William Wyman, and Steve Boehlke. Bill works at Sierra Bravo Corporation and lives in Apple Valley.
JAY REDING, Secretary
Jay Reding is the only non-singing member of the MVMC Board. While possessing a singing voice that could be declared as a weapon of mass destruction, Jay is delighted to be able to work with a group that encourages life-long singing. Jay was a violinist for the Gustavus Adolphus College Symphony Orchestra, the Sioux Falls Washington Symphony Orchestra, and the Des Moines Youth Orchestra. Jay currently practices as a litigation attorney with the Larkin Hoffman law firm.
Mike Champ is also a founding member of the Minnesota Valley Men’s Chorale, has served on the MVMC Board of Directors, and is one of the founding members of the Tenor 1 section. Mike began singing when he was 6 years old and started singing with Steve Boehlke as a junior, the year Steve came to Rosemount High School. Mike sang with Judy Sagan in the summer of 1977 in the musical The Wizard of Oz and in 1978 in the Music Man. Mike studied opera after high school before he went on to tech school to become Computer Field Engineer. Mike is currently a Senior Systems Engineer with General Dynamics in Bloomington. Mike is also one of the founding members of the NOW music team at Rosemount United Methodist Church which will be starting its’ 19th year this fall. In his spare time you can find Mike on the golf course or, in the fall,at Gopher football games.
I first began singing in grade school when our choir director twisted my arm to join her choir. I decided I liked it and it has been a part of my life ever since. I have sung in school choirs and church choirs. I joined MVMC in the fall of 2011. I enjoy singing with a group of men. I feel it has a very rich sound.
I currently work at R.E. Purvis & Associate’s, an industrial seal distributor, as the head of Inside Sales and Customer Service. We provide hydraulic and pneumatic seals in the recreational vehicle market, commercial lawn care, and light construction equipment markets.
Jerry Ewing is a founding member of the MVMC and currently serves on the Board of Directors. He started singing in the church choir shortly after his voice changed, at about age 35. When he changed churches a few years later, Mr. Boehlke was directing the church choir, and after that his three children had “Mr. B” leading their choirs at Rosemount High School. Since retiring from a career in Information Systems Project Management, he spends his time planning vacations, tending his collection of 130,000 photos, reading and writing, with a particular fondness for things like bylaws, policies and procedures, and grant applications. Now, if he just knew one note from another…
Bob Allen has been in MVMC for 3 years, and has sung in the senior choir and played handbells at Grace Lutheran Church with Steve Boehlke for over 25 years. A member of the Bass II section, Bob enjoys music with tight vocal harmonies. In High School he sang in several mixed choruses and ensembles including a barbershop quartet, and performed with a select group from four high schools at Orchestra Hall in Chicago under the direction of Margaret Hillis. Prior to MVMC, Bob spent over ten years with Exultate, a professional chamber chorus with orchestra in the Twin Cities. Bob and his wife Jane, who sings with MVWC, have three daughters, all of whom have sung in District 196 with Steve Boehlke and Judy Sagen. Bob recently retired from the pharmaceutical industry, and looks forward to traveling and spending more time with his six grandchildren.
Eric Ebert joined MVMC in 2010 after returning to Minnesota following four years on the frozen tundra of Green Bay. Eric graduated in 2006 with a degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. He sang in the River Falls concert choir for three years, where he met director Stephen Boehlke and fellow MVMC founding member Kris Kulsrud. Eric currently works in risk and compliance at U.S. Bank in Minneapolis and lives in Lakeville with his wife and two children
For the biography of our artistic director, Steven Boehlke, please visit our staff page.