Board of Directors

Eric Hesse is a Senior Associate at Terracon Consultants, Inc. and is the Environmental Department Manager for its White Bear Lake, Minnesota office.  Eric has approximately 28 years of experience in environmental consulting working on projects involving environmental due diligence, site investigation and cleanup, solid waste facility design and permitting, solid and hazardous waste management, storm water management, National Environmental Protection Act planning requirements, and general environmental compliance.  He manages a 15-person department and is responsible for individual group members as well as overall group performance and growth relative to product quality and financial and growth goals.  Eric has previously served for 8 years on the City of Mendota Heights, Minnesota Planning Commission and 9 years as a board member of Great River Greening.

Steve HeurungSteve Heurung is an Environmental Analyst in the Environmental, Energy and Land Use group at the law firm of Stoel Rives. He is based in the firm’s Minneapolis office and assists clients with brownfield redevelopment and on other environmental issues such as transactional due diligence, permitting and compliance. He has extensive experience with local and state brownfields funding, obtaining over $35 million in brownfields investigation, cleanup, and redevelopment grants supporting Minnesota municipalities and private entities with their brownfields redevelopment efforts. Steve also assists with the management of environmental investigation and cleanup projects and helps secure environmental liability protections for property acquisition, redevelopment, and use.

Margaret KnowltonMargaret Knowlton is the Director of Environmental Risk for The Opus Group.  She is responsible for development and administration of corporate environmental risk management programs, initiation of environmental policies and procedures, and management of environmental risk, issues, and due diligence.  Margaret has extensive experience with environmental due diligence, site remediation, risk analysis, and environmental insurance.  She has managed numerous brownfield redevelopment projects, established the Opus environmental insurance program, and has developed corporate best management practices, policies and procedures utilized nationwide.

Marcus Martin is the grant coordinator for a regional brownfield grant funding within the  Metropolitan Council’s Livable Communities programs with over 10 years of urban planning and economic /community development experience. He has a master’s degree in urban planning from the University of Minnesota. He enjoys true stories told with a purpose and emotionally honest music with a little grit.

Sara PetersonSara Peterson is an environmental attorney and owner of Parkway Law, LLC and past Board Chair. She represents and counsels clients dealing with issues such as: environmental aspects of corporate, real estate and commercial transactions; environmental compliance and permitting; environmental enforcement matters; legacy environmental liabilities, and sustainability and environmental reporting matters. Sara began her career with Dorsey & Whitney’s environmental and regulatory practice group in 2000 and was elected a partner in 2007. In 2010, to complement her legal practice, Sara became a part-time adjunct professor at the University of Minnesota Law School, creating the curriculum for and co-teaching their new Environmental Capstone Course. Starting in January 2011, she also began teaching in the law school’s recently-established Sustainability Law Clinic.

Mary SandsMary Sands is Board Chair and a Vice President and Senior Environmental Consultant at Barr Engineering. She has nearly three decades of experience as an environmental consultant including brownfields investigation and remediation, all phases of environmental due diligence, multi-media compliance audits, and cost engineering for environmental liability assessment. Her clients have included attorneys, developers, corporate real-estate managers, Native American tribes, universities, and others associated with property development. Mary has managed the investigation of numerous sites with hazardous-substance, petroleum, and agricultural contamination in the soil and groundwater. A number of these sites were enrolled in the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s Voluntary Investigation and Cleanup (VIC), Petroleum Brownfields, and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s (MDA’s) Agricultural Voluntary Investigation and Cleanup (AgVIC) programs. For many of these sites, soil and groundwater remediation (consisting of soil-vapor extraction, air sparging, excavation, dual-phase extraction, land farming, or capping) has been performed. (Bio obtained from Barr Engineering website).

Heidi Timm BijoldHeidi Timm-Bijold is the Manager of Business Resources for the City of Duluth, Minnesota.  In that capacity, she serves as a project manager for both the city and its economic development authority (DEDA) in projects that typically involve varying aspects of contamination cleanup, redevelopment and infrastructure challenges.  She also manages DEDA’s Storefront Loan Program and the City’s JOBZ subzone—a program of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, and is responsible for all mandated business subsidy reporting. Heidi is a board member of Sustainable Twin Ports (STP), having participated as a City of Duluth team member of STP’s 2008-2009 Early Adopter training program based upon The Natural Step (TNS).  To that end, she is actively involved in the corporate City’s ongoing sustainability initiatives.  She is also a member of the boards of Community Action Duluth and the Building for Women.

Meredith UdoibokMeredith Udoibok is the Director of the Office of Brownfields and Redevelopment at the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). Meredith has been working in the area of brownfield redevelopment for the past 18 years. Meredith helped establish the State of Minnesota’s Contamination Cleanup Grant Program, the Redevelopment Grant Program, and has been involved with the JOBZ program (tax free zones). She is also responsible for the administration of the Transit Improvement Area Loan Program, as well as an U.S. EPA-funded Revolving Loan Fund Program. In addition, Meredith has experience in working with many of the programs within the Business and Community Development Division when she served as Assistance Director of the Division. She has an extensive background in policy development and legislative issues as a former staff of the Minnesota Senate and congressional office. 

Past Board Members:

Deb DeLuca – Duluth Seaway Port Authority
Jon Carlson- Braun Intertec
Ken Haberman – Landmark Environmental
Paul Hyde – Hyde Development
Wayne Nelson – retired
Kristina Smitten- Hillcrest Development

Advisory Committee

Minnesota Brownfields Advisory Committee is comprised of redevelopment professionals representing twelve different expertise areas. The Advisory Committee enhances our Board’s capacity, and ensures alignment with the current priorities of Minnesota’s diverse redevelopment community. The Advisory Committee provides feedback on research, and helps develop forums and other program activities.

Current Members:

  • Chris Anderson – BankCherokee
  • Cecile Bedor – CommonBond
  • Bryan Boldt – Bank Cherokee
  • Kevin Carroll – City of Minneapolis CPED
  • Keary Cragan – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5
  • Jim DeLuca –  Minnesota Department of Transportation
  • Robert Devolve – Stinson Leonard Street
  • Mary Finch – Hennepin County Environmental Services
  • Jennifer Force, Terracon
  • Donovan Hannu – Bay West
  • Steve Jansen – Peer Engineering
  • Gary Krueger – Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
  • Rick Kubler – Gray Plant Mooty
  • Ava Langston-Kenney – St. Paul Port Authority
  • Dave Liverseed – Mortenson Construction
  • Kristin Lukes – Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development
  • Cathy Mehelich – City of St. Cloud
  • Kristina Smitten – Hillcrest Development
  • Cathy Undem – Dakota County Water Resources
  • Charlie Vander Aarde – Metro Cities
  • Cathy Villas-Horns – Minnesota Department of Agriculture
  • Chair, Meredith Udoibok – Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development/Minnesota Brownfields Board of Directors

Program Committee

Minnesota Brownfields Program Committee is comprised of public and private redevelopment professionals that provide input into educational program development for Minnesota Brownfields. The Program Committee is critical in advising on relevant topics in the redevelopment industry.

Current Members:

  • Mary Finch – Hennepin County Environmental Services
  • Ken Haberman – Landmark Environmental
  • Richard Manser – The Opus Group
  • Jeff Sepesi – 3M
  • Chris Thompson – Braun Intertec
  • Cathy Undem – Dakota County Water Resources
  • Chair, Margaret Knowlton – The Opus Group/Minnesota Brownfields Board of Directors

Membership Committee

Minnesota Brownfields Membership Committee is comprised of industry professionals who are dedicated to enhancing membership for the organization.

Current Members:

  • Jim Crowl – Carlson McCain
  • Richard Manser – The Opus Group
  • Betsy Schmiesing – Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A.
  • Chair, Heidi Timm-Bijold – City of Duluth/Minnesota Brownfields Board of Directors