Meet the MnCAN Staff

The MnCAN staff is a team of individuals with varying strengths and backgrounds who work together to support each other,  the processes and  mission of MnCAN and ultimately the people with aphasia that are touched by its programs, educational efforts and advocacy.

Julia Halvorson, MA, CCC-SLP

Julia Halvorson, MA, CCC-SLP

Executive Director

julia@mncan.org

Julia Halvorson, MA, CCC-SLP, received a Bachelor’s degree from Purdue University and a Master’s degree from the University of Colorado in Boulder.  Julia is passionate about  the opportunity to develop an aphasia program that will connect people with aphasia both in the area and around the state and will provide opportunities for not only improving their communication skills but also encouraging their participation in the organization.  She is an active member of the Aphasia Access program which focuses on Life Participation programming in aphasia.  Julia has worked in the area of neurologic communication for over 30 years in acute care, long term rehab and outpatient settings.  She is currently a Speech Language Pathologist specializing in neurologic rehabilitation/acute care and voice disorders at Ridgeview Medical Center in Waconia, MN.  Julia also has developed and currently facilitates  a MnCAN aphasia conversation group in Waconia.

Teresa Feltmann

Teresa Feltmann

Administrative Assistant

Teresa Feltmann recently retired from Ridgeview Medical Center Rehab Specialties where she gained extensive experience in process improvement and healthcare management.  She worked as the Systems Coordinator for outpatient rehabilitation services,  and served as a representative to the Ridgeview Foundation.   MnCAN is very fortunate to have Teresa’s volunteer assistance in organizational systems and record-keeping and as she says, “It’s my way of giving back!”

Rochelle Anderson

Rochelle Anderson

Registration Assistant

Rochelle Anderson is a stroke survivor and a leader in the aphasia community.  She attended  St. Olaf College and the University of Minnesota Law School, and practiced law for almost 23 years.  Rochelle had a stroke in 2007 and was helped in her recovery by therapists at North Memorial Medical Center.  Rochelle has been a participant in the aphasia conversation groups for over five years and also a regular at the Coffee and Conversation group at North Memorial and Robbinsdale Adult Academic Disability Program.  She organizes her friends in volunteer efforts in her community, has presented on having a stroke and living with aphasia to various groups, and has participated in a monthly book club with others who have aphasia.  She has been a valuable resource as a member of MnCAN’s Founder’s Team and in assisting with the registration process for MnCAN participants.

Meet Our Board of Directors

Our Board members include people whose lives have been touched by aphasia or brain injury either professionally or personally.  They generously share their expertise in needed areas to further the growth and development of MnCAN.

Cindy Busch, PhD, CCC-SLP

Cindy Busch, PhD, CCC-SLP

President

Cindy Busch, PhD, CCC-SLP,  earned her doctorate in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Minnesota in 1985 and served as Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Disorders at Minnesota State University Mankato for 19 years.  She developed and facilitated aphasia conversation groups from 2000 to 2015 and worked closely with graduate students in training the social model of aphasia intervention, supported conversation strategies and life participation approaches to aphasia. Cindy is responsible for initiating the aphasia conversation and  life participation approach to aphasia in the metro area that eventually developed into MnCAN.   Read more about Cindy here.

Barbara Wendt

Barbara Wendt

Treasurer

Barbara Wendt currently owns her own consulting business, Equinox Group, LLC, and provides financial and operational consulting services  mainly for non-profit organizations.  One of her long-time friends, Rochelle, had a stroke resulting in aphasia and is an active participant in the MnCAN aphasia conversation groups.  Her friend’s involvement inspired Barb to volunteer in the group where she met the MnCAN founders and became involved in the MnCAN Founders Team.  Barb has over thirty years of experience in finance, executive management and strategic planning with both non-profits and financial services companies.

Linda Fierce

Linda Fierce

Secretary

Recently retired as a Director of Marketing for Regis Corporation, Linda Fierce brings years of marketing expertise to her position as Secretary of the MnCAN Board.  With a focus on marketing strategy and communication, Linda’s involvement with the MnCAN Board developed from her time on the MnCAN Founders Team.  Linda’s husband, John suffered a stroke eleven years ago and as a result of his aphasia,  has participated in the Aphasia Conversation Groups for the past eight years.