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Herb Brooks Foundation Board and Staff

Jon L. Cherney

Executive Director

Jon L. Cherney was appointed to the position of Executive Director in March 2018 and brings with him a strong background in sports television, sales and marketing.  A media industry veteran of over 30 years, Jon previously worked in a variety of management-level positions at KSTP-TV, Midwest Sports Channel (predecessor to Fox Sports North), Raycom Sports and ShopNBC.  Prior to moving to Minnesota in 1997, Jon worked for Home Team Sports, a regional cable sports network in the Washington, DC area.        

Lindsey Coleman

Program Director

Lindsey Coleman came to the Herb Brooks Foundation in 2019 with many years of experience playing and coaching hockey. She attended Burnsville High School where she played hockey, soccer and lacrosse. Lindsey went on to play NCAA Division 1 Women's Hockey at Minnesota State University, Mankato, playing for 1980 Olympian John Harrington. She was named to the All-Academic and WCHA Scholar Athlete team.

Lindsey currently plays in the Women’s Hockey Association of Minnesota (WHAM) and helps coach for the Prior Lake Girls Hockey team.


The Board of Directors oversees the Foundation. Members (in alphabetical order) include:

Ross Bernstein

President of the Board of Directors

The best-selling author of nearly 50 sports books, Ross is an award-winning, Hall of Fame, peak-performance business speaker who’s keynoted conferences for Fortune 500 companies on six continents and has been featured on thousands of television and radio programs including: CNN, “CBS This Morning,” ESPN, and Fox News, as well as in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times and USA Today. Among Ross' books include "America's Coach: Life Lessons & Wisdom for Gold Medal Success; A Biographical Journey of the Late Hockey Icon Herb Brooks" and "Remembering Herbie: Celebrating the Life and Times of Hockey Legend Herb Brooks." Ross and his wife Sara have one daughter and reside in Apple Valley, MN. www.rossbernstein.com

Henry Boucha

Henry Boucha has been labeled as the most electrifying player in Minnesota hockey history.  Also skilled in football and baseball, Boucha starred for five years at both defense and center for the Warroad High School hockey team.  A tall, powerfully-built Ojibwa Indian, Boucha led Warroad to the 1969 state tournament, where he was injured in an emotion-charged 5-4 overtime final loss to Edina -- one of the all-time classic games in Minnesota State High School Championship history.

"He was the most colorful hockey player ever to come out of Northern Minnesota," said Warroad coaching legend and fellow Hall of Fame enshrinee Cal Marvin.  "When he played, it was so special that he brought people out of the old folks home to come and watch him play.  He did it all.  He was one of a kind."

Boucha went on to play for the 1972 silver medal winning U.S. Olympic team, and at just 19, he signed with the Detroit Red Wings.  After two years in the Motor City, Boucha came home when the Minnesota North Stars acquired him.  But his career was tragically curtailed in his third NHL season when he suffered an eye injury on January 4, 1975 against Boston.

He would come back to play for the WHA's Minnesota Fighting Saints in 1976, and then again in 1977 with the Scouts and Rockies of the NHL, but couldn't overcome his eye injury.  He retired after that at just the age of 24.

Boucha would go on to play for his hometown Warroad Lakers, and then give back by donating much of his time to helping advance various Native American causes.

Winny Brodt Brown

Winny Brodt Brown was the inaugural Ms. Hockey award winner leading her team to an undefeated season ending in a state title her senior year.  In college she won two National Championships, one for the University of New Hampshire and one for the University of Minnesota.  Winny was a member of the U.S. National Team from 1996-2006.  Winny is currently the  Captain of the Minnesota Whitecaps professional women’s hockey team of the NWHL.

Winny owns OS Hockey Training and the Minnesota Jr. Whitecaps, an all-female hockey training program.  Winny has been a TV analyst for KSTC -TV Channel 45, the broadcast home of the Minnesota Girls State Hockey Tournament since 2006.

 

Todd Johnson, MPH

Todd Johnson is a public policy expert and government relations strategic leader with over 20 years of experience with health care providers, insurance, tax and environmental regulations at all levels of government.

Todd is currently the Executive Director of the Minnesota Amateur Sports Commission and the Nation Sports Center. He  has served as the Legislative Director for the MN Department of Health, adjusting faculty at the U of M School of Public Health and Owner of Johnson Government Consulting. He has held several positions at the Minnesota House of Representatives, including Legislative Director to the Speaker of the House of Representatives. 

He was named by Minnesota Law & Politics as one of the most influential lobbyists in the state of Minnesota. 

Todd received his BA in Government & International Relations from Hamline University and Masters in Public Health from the University of Minnesota. He also studied at Oxford University. Father of two sons; Josh and Conor.

Kelly Brooks Paradise

Kelly is the daughter of coach Herb Brooks and has been a board member since the Foundation began in 2003. She grew up in St. Paul and attended Convent of the Visitation. Like her brother, she graduated from the University of Denver (her degrees were in International Business and Spanish).  Kelly then worked on several international advertising campaigns including print, TV and radio production. Now, she is a proud and active Humane Society board member and full-time mother. Kelly finds the time to apply her creativity and marketing skills to the HBF programs and other non-profit organizations. 

Kelly and her husband Marc have three children - Olivia, Tommy and Joe Paradise.  Marc's father (Bob Paradise) played hockey with Herb Brooks on the 1968 Olympic Team.  The Brooks/Paradise family is an athletic, giving, and close-knit family.

Olivia Paradise

Olivia joined the Herb Brooks Foundation board in 2018 and is the granddaughter of Herb Brooks.  She is currently a Journalism student at the University of St. Thomas. Olivia is the Sports Editor for TommieMedia, on the UST tennis team and on the NCCA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.  Olivia is a graduate of Mahtomedi High School where she was a six-time all-conference varsity tennis player and the 2016 Minnesota State High School Tennis Champion. She brings a fresh new young perspective to the Foundation and will be a great addition to expanding the HBF social media presence and awareness.

Wayne Petersen

Wayne has been working in professional sports for over 30 years. Beginning in 1987, Wayne worked in various roles with the Minnesota Twins.

The Minnesota Wild recruited Wayne to join their front office prior to its inaugural season in 2000. He has been with the Minnesota Wild for nearly 21 years and currently is the Director of Community Relations and Hockey Partnerships. The organization's mission is to Create a Greater State of Hockey.

As the person who oversees Community Relations, Wayne has had the responsibility and pleasure of fulfilling the Wild's mission every day.

Deb Schroeder

Deb Schroeder has experience working in Human Resources and is an accomplished photographer, painter, model scout, yoga instructor, and a proud “hockey mom” of three at every level for the past 20 years and still going.

The game of hockey, the people, and the valuable life lessons that come with the game of hockey has been a blessing to her family and it has helped them learn and grow as students, athletes, mentors, coaches and people. Deb is also involved with several other organizations such as Teens for Change, St. Thomas Academy, Lakeville, RPI schools, college and sports, University of Minnesota, Hosanna Church, Dig Deep Team & a school board campaign committee. Deb became a volunteer with the Herb Brooks Foundation six years ago and was appointed to the Board of Directors three years go. 

In her spare time, Deb loves family, friends, faith, fitness, the cabin & Florida adventures.  

William Weller

Bill, the father of four kids, founded and continues to own Flagship USA, Inc. -  a real estate management and investment company. Bill is the first cousin of the late Herb Brooks and one of the founding family board members. Herb Brooks was a father figure and mentor for Bill as he lost his father at age 6 to colon cancer. Growing up a single parent home few blocks from the Brooks family -  Bill’s youth was filled with lessons on baseball, golf, hockey and life from the Brooks family. Herbie provided motivation for practicing sports and working hard in school.

As an East St Paul native, Bill graduated from Johnson High School and played in three State High School tournaments – including the 1963 State Championship. He went on to play at the University of Minnesota as a freshman under coach John Mariucci and transferred to Bemidji State University and enjoyed playing on three National Championship teams under Bob Peters while completing his college education.

In the 1990’s Bill and Herbie spent many hours musing about ways to improve youth hockey. Herbie always emphasized the importance of team sports in shaping the character and values of youth players at all skill levels while being relentless in exploring ways to “give the game back to the kids”.

Bryan Zollman

Bryan grew up on the East Side of St. Paul and played in the Tartan Youth Hockey Association. He attended Hill-Murray High School where he was part of the 1991 state championship team in the last of the Great 8 Tournament before the MSHSL went to two tiers and eventually two classes.

Bryan was drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the 1992 draft and attended Minnesota State University, Mankato. Bryan's first job in journalism was with the Osceola Sun newspaper in Osceola, Wisconsin. He also started Baseball Minnesota, a statewide baseball publication. Bryan and his wife Heather have owned and operated "Let's Play Hockey" since 2016. They have three children and Bryan stays  involved with hockey coaching for the  Sauk Centre high school team.

Strategic Partners

Pete Carlson

Senior Director of Operations and Programming

Pete Carlson started working at the National Sports Center (NSC) in 1997.  He started out as the first ice rink manager at the  Super Rink.  As the Senior Director of Operations and Programming, he not only manages the operations of the now eight sheet facility, he is also in charge of making sure it is programmed to capacity.  Pete enjoys working with both operations and ice sports programming colleagues to run this great facility.  He is married to Jennifer Carlson who is a professor at Hamline University.  They have two children Tait and Claire.  Both grew up at the Super Rink playing hockey and other sports offered by the NSC.      

Joe Dziedzic

Joe Dziedzic has been running JD Hockey, a hockey training business, for over 15 years which consists of skill camps, 3 on 3 leagues, and lessons. Joe has coached high school hockey in Minneapolis the past 6 years and previously spent time coaching in the Upper Midwest HS Elite League. Joe played 5 years of professional hockey with the Pittsburgh Penguins and Phoenix Coyotes, as well as with their minor league teams in Cleveland and Springfield. He played college hockey at the  University of Minnesota and was named Mr Hockey in 1990 before graduating from Edison High School. Joe and wife Kelly have 3 kids and reside in Roseville, MN. 

James Nelson

Financial Director

James Nelson, CPA, is finance business professional that focuses on growing small and medium sized businesses. With experience spanning event management, healthcare, public accounting, and manufacturing he brings a rare skill set of robust financial experience, strong communication, and emotional intelligence. Currently, James serves as the CFO at the National Sports Center (NSC), where he manages the company’s finances and human resource functions.  Outside of work, James enjoys traveling with his family and staying active. James received his dual BA in Accounting and Finance from UW-Eau Claire.

Sara Soli

Chief Marketing and Communications Officer

Sara Soli is currently the Chief Marketing and Communications Officer for the National Sports Center. Sara has more than 20 years of media, marketing, event and sponsorship experience.  Previous tot the National Sports Center, Sara oversaw the marketing, events and digital teams at Greenspring Media. She has her Masters Degree in Business Communication from the University of St. Thomas, where she also received her B.A. in Journalism.  Sara is a mother of two student athletes and spends many hours on the sidelines cheering on her daughters.

Jon Cherney

Executive Director

Phone: 763-785-5645

Lindsey Coleman

Program Director

Phone: 763-792-7356

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