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BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Board members serve as a voting member, assist in the development of and approve policies, procedures, and regulations to govern the operations of Sol Inspirations, and monitor the finances, programs and performance of the organization. Board members are chosen because of their commitment and long-term vision.
Alex Detrick is the President and founder of Sol Inspirations. He originally produced an eco fashion runway show called Sol Inspirations as a fundraiser for Haiti. Due to the passionate local interest in the production, Alex continued the program after the event as a non-profit organization called Sol Inspirations whose mission was to advocate for responsible fashion.
Several events in Alex’s life helped to shape Sol Inspirations: His ecological interest started in the early 90’s when he helped to build and race the University of Minnesota’s first two Solar Vehicles, he dabbled in commercial print and runway modeling, in 2008 he received his MBA from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management program, and in 2010, he joined the Minnesota Renewable Energy Society. As a child, Alex witnessed a jewelry sweatshop in the basement of a jewelry store in his Mother’s native country of Taiwan. While these conditions no longer exist there, he remembers the dirt floor, cinder block walls, lack of ventilation, and no lighting except for a few low watt bulbs dangling from the five foot high ceiling. Each worker polished and shaped gems on a grinding wheel which also ground their fingers past their finger nails.
Alex has pulled these life experiences together to develop Sol Inspirations and invites members of the community to reach out to us with their own experiences and help make responsible fashion available to everyone.
Nikki Rae is a Minnesota native with a love for travel, culture and fashion. She studied Fashion Photography at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Sippy Downs, Australia and holds degrees in Photography and Mass Media from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota. Her love of sustainable fashion was fully realized while living abroad and interacting with sustainable design scholars at USC. During this experience, she was able to take part in the production of hand made goods from the local indigenous people and became inspired to make a difference in the wasteful nature of a consumer driven world.
Nikki has always been particularly drawn to fashion as a medium, writing for an Australian based web magazine and specializing in fashion and lifestyle photography in college. She currently is the co-owner of the lifestyle brand The Evolving Social. She believes in fostering a new generation of informed but fashionable designs, designers and consumers of fashion.
Anupama Pasricha, Ph.D. is the Department Chair and an Associate Professor in the Department of Apparel, Merchandising, and Design at St. Catherine’s University in St. Paul, MN. Her specialties are sustainability, qualitative research and assessment. Anu’s interests include sustainable fashion and apparel; sustainable design, product development and supply chain; sustainability education within fashion and apparel; adaptive apparel; technical design and quality management throughout the supply chain; and fit.
Anupama’s perspective coming from the world of higher education has been so helpful to Sol Inspirations. Her commitment to the movement continues to inspire us all day after day.
Julie is the co-owner and founder of Inspired Thinking, a company that helps clients discover their inner beauty and develop skills to express themselves confidently resulting in a positive image.
Julie has worked within the Beauty Industry for over 25 years. The majority of her career has been within the Aveda Network. Julie had the good fortune of working with Horst Rechelbacher in the early years of Aveda’s development. She started with the company as an Instructor for the Education Center. Horst encouraged Julie to start giving speeches to “Inspire the students to reach their full potential.” In time, Julie’s position’s expanded and she became an Aveda National Recruiter and a National Sales Trainer. Julie also worked in a Multi-Million Dollar a year Aveda focused salon as a Salon/Spa Manager.
For a few years, Julie branched into Radio Advertising with Salem Communications. She helped clients with business growth strategies on-air & on-line. Her passion for health & wellness issues led her to Co-Produce and Co-Host a radio show “Inspired Talk on Aging and Wellness.”
Today, as an acclaimed national professional speaker & published author, she believes you can “transform your life by transforming your attitude & aptitude.”
Julie is an active member with Toastmaster’s International, the Professional Beauty Association and the National Association of Professional Women. She serves on the 2012-2013 Board of Directors for the Minnesota Salon & Spa Association.
Candice Dehnbostel is currently working as a publicist for an advertising agency, Next Communications, Inc., where she was originally hired as a coordinator. During this time, she handled all administrative aspects of the company, including material preparation and database management. In her current position, she is responsible for writing content that is distributed through print, online and electronic channels. Outside of her day-time job, she works with the owner of Melrose Antiques, where she provides marketing and online retail skills to sell vintage clothing. Candice received her Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota.
We are honored to have Candice on our team where she will act as board secretary and help drive PR and marketing policies.
Katherine joins the Sol Inspirations board from her previous roll as our Associate Director. She is a dedicated eco fashion worrier and has been with the organization since 2011. As our Associate Director, Katherine published several blogs about local eco fashion efforts. She also managed several projects such as our fashion shows, clothing swaps, and numerous events.
Outside of Sol Inspirations, Katherine works at the Foundry and helps out kids at Project Footsteps. During her free time, she enjoys blogging, doing yoga and loves going to sporting events.
Renalie is the Apparel Technologies instructor at Minneapolis Community and Technical College and has a Fashion Design degree from St. Catherine’s University. Renalie is passionate about sustainable fashion and has been a faithful Sol Inspirations volunteer since our first meeting in June, 2010.
With Sol Inspirations, Renalie has taken lead production roles in our fashion shows helping with everything from training new models, stage crew, to stage director.
Khamphian Vang comes from a tradition of community service. Her father was one of the founding members of Hmong American Friendship Association, an organization focused on empowering the Hmong community and preserving culture in Milwaukee, WI. As a child, her involvement in HAFA in addition to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center ignited her passion for social justice and human service.
Khamphian brings this perspective into her work as a designer. She has shown in several fashion shows in the Twin Cities area including Sol Inspirations Eco Fashion Show (May 2012) and Envision Fall Fashion Show (September 2012). She will be showing a new collection in the upcoming spring show, Envision 2014, committing to using recycled and environmentally sustainable materials and textiles. She has made a commitment to responsible fashion in her own work and now as Certification Director of Sol Inspirations.
She is currently enrolled in the MBA program at Hamline University School of Business concentrating on finance. An innovator and compassionate leader, her goal is to inspire action and cultivate a better world through social entrepreneurship.
Born and raised in Minnesota, Michelle Hamburger is an independent sales and marketing representative, partner for interior design consultation company CA Design, and freelance writer for the Twin Cities’ healthy living magazine, Natural Awakenings. Michelle graduated in 2005 from Trinity International University in Illinois and spent several post-college years traveling the country working with volunteer organizations AmeriCorps NCCC and Hands On Gulf Coast.
Michelle also co-leads Twin Cities Green Drinks, a sustainability-focused networking organization for local businesses, non-profits and individuals. Her role as a board member will blend well with her personal interests in ethical fashion and environmentally sustainable business practices.
As small town Midwestern girl, Ashleyn Przedwiecki has been building, imagining, and creating with fabric since the days of her barn yard studio. With an appetite for storytelling, she recently received her BS from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse in Interpersonal Communication Studies and Theater Arts Costume Design. Her studies took her across the sea to Bournemouth, England where she dug deeper into garment construction and the social impact clothing has on women’s roles throughout history.
Her passions collide with interest in environmental awareness and global issues, led her in the direction of fair fashion. In 2004, Ashleyn began her passionate journey in sustainability after a trip to Costa Rica. There she worked side by side with local artistans and teachers, sparking her curiosity and drive in creating a more sustainable, fair future. She is currently working in non-profit development with an interest in textile waste reduction and ethical sourcing in the apparel and textile industry.
Our esteemed Executive Board members are fierce advocates of responsible fashion and ethical trade practices and help us find the money and resources that we need to maintain our community education and advocacy programs. Together, we will position the Twin Cities as the leader in responsible fashion. Sol Inspirations has big aspirations and is positioning the Twin Cities to be the leader in responsible fashion.
Lisa Williams was raised in a culture of revolutionary hairdressers who embraced hairdressing as a noble, artistic and skilled craft. She was trained at Horst Rechelbacher’s Education Center, then spent years leading a world-class salon group.
In 2011, she opened Bespoke Hair Artisans in Edina Minnesota.
Erika born and raised in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, has obsessively immersed herself into the sustainable art, education, social and environmental justice world, and humor, with the dedication of a stalker. Erika is a innovative sustainable film-producer, photographer and high fashion eco jewelry designer. She is also a highly experienced alternative educator, non-profit and business administrator, and youth organizer.
As the founder and owner of Tea Tree Designs Eco Jewelry & Multimedia Studios, Ms. Backberg has been named TOP 100 CREATIVES by City Pages,BEST OF LOCAL RECLAIMED MATERIALS JEWELRY ARTISTS by CBS Minnesota, produced three shorts selected and screened at Festival De Cannes and an award winning Superbowl commercial.
Professionally certified in Sustainable Resource Management, Erika has over 15 years experience developing triple bottom line/holistic structures and systems for businesses, non-profit organizations and media productions actualizing their sustainable vision in every aspect of their work.
“As an Executive Board member, I am honored and excited to apply my integrated experience with my passions for sustainable community development, policy reform, and Eco-entrepreneurship. I am thankful to be involved in this group of fashion innovators and proud to be a thought leader working to create holistic individual and systemic change within the MN fashion community and beyond.”
Rachel Roff is a spirited young woman with much enthusiasm about Sol Inspiration’s mission. She is passionate about empowering others to share their voice through community media and the web and works as a Project Manager at Brave New Media. To fulfill her creative urges tangibly she runs and sews her own fashion line, under the brand deLange designs (which is an ode to her maiden name).
Rachel is a self-taught designer and studied at the International Sustainable Development Studies Institute in Chiang Mai, Thailand. She also is an award winner of the Recycle Runway Challenge at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts in Michigan.