The Transition Network

Minneapolis/St. Paul CHAPTER Leadership Team

Chapter Chair - Jill Goski

My professional career included teaching preschool, directing a community center, working in public/community relations for a major light rail transit infrastructure project, and a variety of human resource and education roles, the last decade as Director of Education and Organization Development for the Minnesota Supreme Court. I left full time employment a few years ago to transition to part time consulting and serve on a National Board. Some would call this retirement. As a lifelong learner, I resonated with the philosophy in the TTN signature book, ‘Smart Women Don’t Retire, They Break Free” which refers to this event as going from working full time to living full time and continuing a life of engagement and contribution.

I had heard from so many “retirees” that they were ‘doers’ while working but after retirement they were just ‘being’ or that they went from ‘Who’s Who!’ to ‘Who’s she?’ after leaving full-time employment. They wanted to continue contributing and having impact. However, the constellation of people they came into contact with each day no longer knew their rich work and life experiences and talents. As I learned more about TTN, I realized how much the Vision, Mission and Values mirrored many of my own interests and values. TTN provides a community of women who recognize each other’s gifts, talents and strengths through contributions for the common good.

I have been involved in TTN since the first local organizing meetings in late 2013 and became a member of the leadership/steering committee in early 2014, Co-Chair in 2015 and Chair in 2018.

Other things that I love filling my life with now include: taking care of my Grandchildren a day or two each week, volunteering in my Grandson’s preschool class, pilates and fitness classes, outdoor activities, travel, leading tours at the Ramsey County Courthouse and St. Paul Union Depot, and serving as primary family agent and caregiver for my Mom who lives in a Senior care community. I also contributed for several months to the Super Bowl and the Final Four when hosted locally. I am a member of a TTN Transition Peer Group, and several Special Interest Groups including Finance, Art Appreciation, Book Discussion, Theater, Travel and Urban Hiking.

Cyndy Nelson

My name is Cyndy Nelson and I live in New Brighton.  I took early retirement following my layoff from Target in July, 2016.  As I enter this new phase of my life, I want to look for ways to use my abilities and interests to make a positive impact on others, make new friends, and have new experiences. I learned about TTN and joined in 2016. As I have participated in the Money SIG, the book discussion group, and numerous events, I have discovered that there are many women with similar goals to mine. I have joined the TTN Steering Committee so I can apply the skills I gained during my career as an IT Project Manager to help TTN grow in the Twin Cities. My hobbies are reading, walking, and traveling.

Erin Campbell

Life has held many changes for me and now I hope to embrace this new adventure. I grew-up in Falcon Heights and then earned my art degree from Saint Cloud State University. During my career working for the Boys & Girls Clubs, I have lived in Seattle, Milwaukee, Green Bay and the Twin Cities. I quit work about two years ago and I am still figuring out this new change. I am looking to have fun and challenge myself. I believe in the strength of women to support each other and TTN is the perfect organization.

Barbara O'Sullivan

My exploration of joining TTN began as the Minnesota chapter was in formation. I attended several meetings and was excited about the possibility. My interest was sparked and I continue to be excited by the wonderful women I meet. I decided to wait to become involved since I knew I would retire from my position at Minnesota Department of Education in a few years. I did retire three years ago and immediately joined TTN. There was a request in the monthly newsletter to send ideas for forming peer groups. I responded with an idea to form a group with a focus on living with purpose. I received a call from Eleni who liked my idea and asked me to start up the group. I remember thinking "Well why not". I enjoy all the interest groups and events I attend as part of TTN. What differs for me with the peer group is that we focus on everyday life and learn from and with each other how to live our lives with meaning and intention. My hope and goal is to have more peer groups available geographically throughout the Twin Cities.
In addition to TTN, I currently serve on the board for Center for Inclusive Child Care, an organization that provides coaching to child care teachers and providers caring for young children. I also teach yoga for the YMCA. The light of life are my two grandsons, ages two and four years old whom I see every week on "Grammie Day".
TTN provides limitless possibilities since it is an organization led by members.

Julie Efta

My roots are a large farm family in northwest Minnesota about 10 miles from the Canadian border. After hopping around to different universities in different states, I graduated in Latin education from UNC Chapel Hill. I later received a certificate in ESL from Hamline. My family lived in northern England for 2 years and I taught at a university in China for one year. Travel abroad, nature, reading, writing, exploring and learning are key interests.

I'm a dreaming, introverted, listening connector and lifelong learner. When I feel attached and drawn to an idea or need, my creative impulses flow. I first learned about TTN through a Meet up group of women over 50. I was seeking new friendships, activities and opportunities to learn and share information. I was an early joiner because I saw potential in TTN and I loved the leaders. From one peer group and one book club we have grown to 3 peer groups and many special interest groups. In order to continue to grow and retain membership, we need more small group connections. From experience, I know that volunteering to lead and taking a chance on a new idea can be daunting, but it is worth the effort! This may be the longest winter ever. To stave off isolation and potential depression, Zoom meetings can enhance our lives and provoke new ideas and interests. What is your passion? What do you want to learn more about? What group could you join or form? All ideas are welcome. I am sure there is someone out there who would co-lead! We usually regret the things we have not done.

Tracey Baker

Tracey retired from a nearly 40-year career as a librarian at the Minnesota Historical Society. She discovered the Transition Network about 5 years ago, shortly after her retirement and has enjoyed making new friends, exploring new and old interests, and learning about a variety of subjects. She is passionate about research, history, golf, hiking, art, travel, grandchildren, and learning more about a variety of subjects. As a co-leader of the Art Appreciation group, she takes joy in learning more about art and art history and now can create art in her newly remodeled basement studio/laundry room. The writing group has been a great support in writing a family history that she has spent years investigating. As an information gatherer and organizer, she has delighted in working with the MIX (member information exchange) subgroup of the Caring Collaborative planning development committee.

Kathleen Peterson

Kathleen enjoyed a 44-year career as a Registered Nurse and retired in 2016. Her primary roles involved engaging patients in their own health, discharge planning for patients in transition, and complex case management in both hospital and outpatient settings. She joined TTN after attending a member workshop two years ago. She has enjoyed the fellowship and friendships with other women, the opportunity to co-lead the Exploring Food SIG, and the abundant options to broaden her horizons in retirement. She feels that the participation in the formation and leadership of the MSP Caring Collaborative relates well to the work she has been doing throughout her career. Outside of TTN she spends time seeing to the needs of her family (including two grandsons), walking and biking for fitness and pleasure, and tending a new garden. She is interested in service to the community and appreciates the TTN philosophy of “stepping up when needed”.

Patty Petersen

Patty Petersen retired a year ago after 34 years as a writer and magazine editor at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. She loved interviewing people and telling their stories. She served on the University Committee on Women, Multicultural Steering Committee and Climate Study Committee. She discovered that women faculty had a mentoring system, so she started one for staff members. As she prepared for retirement, she wanted more friends in her life, so she joined The Transition Network about 4 years ago. She has been reinvigorated by the many interesting women she has met and is a member of the Art Appreciation group, a Transition Peer group, “On Being” group, and book groups. She is excited to help other women enjoy the many opportunities for connection and growth as she and Marilynne co-facilitate the member liaison program.

Marilynne Roberts

Earthling Marilynne Roberts loves learning, and used her law degree to become a law school professor. While teaching and learning at Hamline University School of Law from 1980 to 2014 she taught a variety of people and subjects focused on law as an instrument of public policy and social change. Marilynne taught many dispute resolution courses, including Mediation and Arbitration, to law students, lawyers and judges. She served as a mediator, arbitrator, Hearing Review Officer and Special Master for many kinds of cases. She bred Norwegian Forest Cats, three of whom still delight her daily. She volunteers for The Wildcat Sanctuary and the Bell Museum. She joined TTN to meet interesting peers, to keep her mind active, and to serve others. She co-facilitates the Travel SIG and is on the Caring Collaborative Member Information Exchange (MIX) subcommittee. She looks forward to learning more about TTN members as she and Patty coordinate the Liaison Program. 

Material from, 11:26:41 October 27, 2021.
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