The AARP Minnesota Executive Council is a team of volunteer leaders with a variety of skill sets, experiences, and backgrounds. The Executive Council helps shape the strategic direction and execute the mission of AARP Minnesota – ensuring that AARP remains a relevant resource and influential voice for people 50+ in our state and across our communities. Learn more about these incredible volunteers:
Kate Schaefers, Ph.D.
Kate Schaefers has a passion for aligning individual talents with meaningful work. Her specialties include coaching clients who are transitioning into new roles, jobs, and careers, and organizations that are exploring ways to tap the talent of a multigenerational workplace. Her portfolio career has one unifying theme – bringing out the best in individuals and organizations. As a leadership coach, Kate works with leaders to focus development goals and strengthen leadership effectiveness. In her coaching work, she specializes in higher education and nonprofit sectors. She also coaches people as they explore encore careers: career change to meaningful work in the second half of life. Kate is an executive council member of AARP-MN, and a founding board member of SHIFT, a Twin Cities nonprofit facilitating career change in the second half of life. She teaches graduate level classes at the University of MN and the University of St. Thomas. She is past president of Minnesota Career Development Association and received the Jules Kerlan Outstanding Achievement Award in 2012 for contributions to the field of career development. She contributes to Encore.org, a nonprofit focused on tapping the talent of people 50+ for social impact. Kate also assists in planning AARP MN & Pollen Midwest's 50 Over 50 program.
Anthony Taylor has never stopped biking since receiving a Schwinn Apple Crate for his birthday in 1971. In 1998 a group of African American women that wanted to complete the AIDS ride from Minneapolis to Chicago approached him for help and the seeds of Major Taylor Bicycling Club of MN were born. MTBCMN was founded in 1999 with the commitment to increase the participation of the African American community in cycling for sport, transportation, and health improvement. Anthony is a member of the League of American Bicyclists Equity Advisory Council, Co-founder of the Major Taylor Bicycling Club of MN, Co-founder and VP of the National Brotherhood of Cyclists, and the founder of Slow Roll Twin Cities. Anthony actively engages in partnerships that use active living and the outdoors as a tool to build community, increase personal power, and community safety, and improve the wellbeing of our youth and families with a special commitment to historically oppressed communities. He recently served as Senior Vice President of Equity Outdoors for the YMCA of the North and the Directed Adventures and Equity Programs for the Loppet Foundation. Anthony was appointed by Gov. Walz to the Governor's Council on Age-Friendly Minnesota and as a Commissioner on the Metropolitan Council Open Space Commission, responsible for funding and policy in the Regional Park Systems and the founder of Melanin In Motion leading outdoor adventures for BIPOC families and youth
Bev Bachel is a Twin Cities freelancer who writes about aging, retirement and financial planning. She helped establish the Minnesota 50 Over 50, an annual AARP Minnesota program that honors 50 Minnesotans over the age of 50 who are doing amazing things and has written the bios of more 250+ honorees. She also helped develop Aging with Gusto, a health and wellness program for people 50+. A big believer in the power of goalsetting, she is the author of What Do You Really Want? How to Set a Goal and Go for It, which has sold more than 50,000 copies and been translated into five languages.
Dr. Rose Chu
Dr. Rose Wan-Mui Chu has dedicated her professional life to the tireless pursuit of education equity and excellence for children and youth. A first-generation immigrant from Hong Kong and a first-generation college graduate, Rose brings over 30 years of rich and diverse cross-sector experiences. Her original engineering background and work experience, coupled with her most honored role as a classroom teacher have continued to ground her life’s work in educational reform and transformation. She has provided tremendous leadership through her various roles in K-12 settings, in higher education, in the public sector, and in nonprofits. She is an experienced consultant with a diverse professional portfolio, often sought after for her thought partnership and commitment to equity and systems change. Rose also has a long history of service through her volunteerism and leadership in the community. She co-founded the Dragon Festival at Lake Phalen, St. Paul. She has served on numerous boards, including being a founding board member of AMAZEworks and the Coalition of Asian American Leaders. Rose is currently a board member of Junior Achievement North and is a Parks and Recreation Commissioner for the city of Little Canada. She was elected to the school board of the Roseville Area Schools and began her first term in January 2020. Dr. Chu is a 2016 AARP MN & Pollen Midwest's 50 Over 50 Honoree.
When Diana Pierce, KARE 11 anchor, retired after more than 30 years of delivering the news, people kept asking her “What’s next?” While the answer was not clear at first, it is now—and that is to amplify the voices of people 50+, a demographic mostly ignored by traditional media. She hosts “What’s Next with Diana Pierce,” a Facebook live stream focused on helping people reinvent themselves when it comes to work, health, money, and retirement. Diana’s warmth and compassion combined with her straightforward style ensures respectful yet engaging stories. Now 66, the Plymouth resident and her partner also share their artistic talents as gifted adventure-travel and nature photographers. Both pursuits are disrupting the notion that creativity diminishes with age. Diana is embodying the idea of living your passion at any age and encouraging others 50+ to do so as well. Read more about her passions and current projects at her website https://www.dianapierce.com. Diana is a 2020 AARP MN & Pollen Midwest's 50 Over 50 Honoree.
Gary Marx has been in the health care insurance business for over thirty years, serving in executive and marketing roles for Mayo Clinic and Allianz Life and as President of Gary Marx LTC Services, Inc. since 2006. Gary earned a BA in Political Science from CA State Northridge and a law degree from LaVerne College of Law. Gary resides in Saint Paul, MN with his wife, Maggie and Boomer, their 7-year-old Boston Terrier. Gary wholeheartedly supports the mission and objectives of AARP MN and has served on the MN Speakers team with engagement and Presentation in Fraud Prevention, Advocacy and Disrupt Aging. Gary is also certified Nationally by AARP for the Disrupt Aging classroom presentation and has presented at several colleges. Gary is honored to continue to work with the excellent AARP staff and help create ways to accomplish the goals of the AARP MN organization by meeting the changing needs of its constituents.