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Retirees in retirement: Sharing your story (March 2019)

Don Breneman, who retired as a photographer for Extension Communications in 2004, continues with his freelance photography, selling images through an agency in England and locally. Don recently joined the Kabetogama Clean Water Initiative Steering Committee.

Jayne Hager Dee, former Extension regional director in the Farmington office who retired in 2012, was re-elected in November to a four-year term on the Dakota County Soil and Water District Board of Supervisors.

Shirley Doering, a regional educator in 4-H youth development, Regional Office Mankato until retiring in 2011, is involved with a local school program. The students’ assignment was to research the question: "Why do I volunteer and what do I gain from volunteering and what do others gain?” Shirley joyfully reflected on how volunteering has helped her and encouraged students to see how volunteering can lead to scholarship opportunities and/or career exploration.

Barb Liukkonen, water resources educator and program leader who held a statewide position until retiring in 2009, continues her work with climate adaptation. In November, she was honored with a special recognition award at the MN Climate Adaptation Conference for her work of initiating the Climate Adaptation Partnership (MN CAP) and helping lead the MN CAP awards efforts for the past seven years.

Arnie Heikkila served as an area agent for community resource development in Clearwater County and the Arrowhead region and helped create the Sea Grant Extension Program at the University of Minnesota Duluth in 1974. Since retirement in 1988, he served on his local co-op housing board and the Finnish Historical Society Board that hosted two national meetings.

Gordon Rose, former assistant director, Community Resource Development and Natural Resources, St. Paul campus, now lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, at Prince of Peace Retirement Center with his wife, Ruth. He reports that his “dream retiree job is now staying warm.”

Denny Seefeldt who retired in 1992 as Extension district director, agriculture and administration, has been a volunteer cross country ski coach for Stillwater High School Ski Team since 1995. One of his highlights was being able to be an early coach for Olympic Gold Medalist Jesse Diggins. Denny has also been active in his local city offices, including four years as a mayor for Scandia.
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