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Our Board

At our Annual Members Meeting on November 3, 2016, the following were elected to vacant seats:  

Susan Bertram, 1st term 2017- 2019

Katrina Keough, 2nd term ends December 2019

David Sprouse, 1st term  2017-2019


Current Board members are: 

                                                                           Julie Foster Lindquist, President 

Julie says, 
“In 1979 a friend invited me to come check out this new music Festival in Champion with him, and I’ve been hooked ever since! Had the honor of serving on the board and many committees over the years, and have met so many amazing folks through Hiawatha, including my partner of 36yrs!
Just love my Hiawatha Family!”



                                                                          Susan Bertram, Vice President

Susan says, 

As part of the founding group out of Deerton, MI, the Hiawatha Music Co-op has been a legacy passed on to my children and grandchildren. The greatest joy I have is seeing the future of true traditional music live on in the families who attend and volunteer each year.

I have served on the board for multiple terms and in many capacities. I am active on the concert and events committee as well as the strategic planning committee. During the Festival, I coordinate the Tokens and enjoy the year round music the Hiawatha Music Co-op works diligently to provide.


                                                                           Erin Leahy-Putvin, Secretary

Erin says, 

I attended my first Hiawatha at the age of fifteen. After attending nearly twenty festivals, I was nominated for the Hiawatha Board. In an effort to further foster and promote the values and traditions of the Hiawatha Music Co-op, I decided to run for the board. In my time on the board, I have been actively involved in the organization of festival camping.

I currently serves as Board Secretary for the Hiawatha Music Co-op. This is my fourth year in this position.


                                                                    Doug Kitchel, Treasurer

Doug says, 

I have lived many wonderful places in this country and even overseas for a year and I am very happy to be living in Marquette. I’ve been living here with my wife and family since 2004. In fact I got married here to my wife Jamie. We now have three children and live in the Village.

I am a busy guy. I have three businesses and a lot of hobbies. I own and operate All About Services and my wife and I own several rental units which always seem to need some maintenance and attention.

I have a lot of hobbies and interests. One is music. I am a musician and play a few instruments. My primary instrument is the five string banjo which I play in a local band The Union Suits. I also love to be in the woods hunting. I like to exercise outdoors by nordic skiing and biking. I love to go to camp and spend time with my family.

I have been on the Board of Directors for Hiawatha for 5 years and am currently the Treasurer as well as the area coordinator for the childrens’ performance area. I love our festival and have been going since I moved to Marquette 14 years ago.

                                                                             Katrina Keough

Katrina says, 

I am a second generation board member following in my parents, Susan and Gene’s footsteps. I’ve never missed a festival in 32 years and am now bringing my own children each year! The people of Hiawatha Music Co-op are my family.
My passion as a board member is to keep the spirit of true traditional music alive.
I’m an area coordinator for Membership, serve on the membership and events committees, and also chair the NMU Student Chapter.                                                                            

                                                                                 Michael Reed

Michael says, 

“My family and I moved to Marquette in 1995 and discovered the Hiawatha Traditional Music Festival in 1996. That was the first year we attended. We began working and volunteering within a short period of time afterward and soon allowed HMC to use our house to house performers during the festival. With continued involvement and encouragement from friends and family, I was nominated for and was elected to the Board of Directors. We continue to allow HMC to use our house and I also serve on the fundraising and music selection committees. I believe in preserving heritage while at the same time acknowledging the growth and evolution that comes from acceptance of our background and experiences. Music is an important part of my life and I greatly enjoy being in a position to help promote quality music programs in our area. Hiawatha Power!”


                                                                                  Pearl Taylor


                                                                                         Josh Thompson


Josh says

I grew up in Alabama, lived out West for many years and moved to Marquette with my family in 2012.  We went to our first Hiawatha Music Festival that year and have not missed one since.  In 2015 I joined the Board of Directors and I am now the area coordinator for the festival workshops. 
As a kid I never learned to play a musical instrument, convinced my fingers were too fat to play.  After college I briefly thought of finally learning to play, but decided I was too old to start.  I was 21 years old at the time.  
Ten years later, determined to play music, I asked my wife to by me a banjo.  She did and we both suffered as I taught myself to play.  I love old time mountain music in all its forms and I have fond memories of hearing that lonesome call many times at the Hiawatha Music Festival.  
I am a mathematics professor at Northern Michigan University.  My wife is also a professor there and we have two sweet litte girls.  We love getting outside in the UP to camp, bike, ski and surf.  



                                                                                Jose Garcia

Hi everyone! My name’s Jose and I’ve been on the Hiawatha board since the beginning of 2016, so I’m a newbie! I’ve known about the Co-op for many years, but didn’t really involved and begin attending events until 2013. I’ve have served as a volunteer and most recently, I’ve also been a Green Team Monitor during Festival. I love what the co-op stands for and having a musical background, I appreciate how focused we as an organization are in bringing music and educating the community, especially our youth. My 5 year old will be attending his 4th festival this summer – he talks about Hiawatha Music Festival as if it’s a holiday… right between the 4th of July and Mom’s birthday on the calendar!

                                                                               David Sprouse

David says, 

The first time I heard about the Hiawatha Music Co-op was when I came to NMU in 1995. I starting living in Marquette year-round in 1997, which was also my first Hiawatha festival. That year I got to hear music new to my ears and have been captivated ever since. My family and I enjoy getting outside, especially in the summer time, and exploring all that Michigan has to offer. This includes the many music festivals in the L.P. and in the UP. I look forward to growing and creating with the Hiawatha Music Co-op.



The Executive positions were seated at the first 2017 Board Meeting on January 25, 2017

Your 2016 Board Members are:

  • President – Julie Foster-Lindquist
  • Vice President – Susan Bertram
  • Treasurer – Doug Kitchel
  • Secretary – Erin Leahy Putvin
  • David Sprouse
  • Katrina Keough
  • Michael Reed
  • Pearl Taylor
  • Jose Garcia
  • Josh Thompson



The Hiawatha Board is an active group!  Some of the recent endeavors have been to develop and implement a long term strategic plan for the Co-op, re-ignite efforts to engage with other community groups to bring traditional  music to the area, offer traditional music events year round, and engage volunteers in Committee work.  

 Please remember that you must have been a Music Co-op member for at least six months to serve on the board. An original $5 life membership can meet this requirement.

If you would like to put your name in nomination for one of the 4 board positions open for election at the Annual Members Meeting, please come prepared to speak for about a minute to introduce yourself and share some of the information below during the meeting.

  • Approx. length of membership and/or involvement with Hiawatha
  • Areas of interest
  • Areas of expertise


Our Board has 10 members. Board terms are three years.

A board member can serve two consecutive terms.  At the conclusion of a second term, a Board member must pause for a period of one year before running for the Board again.  

The board meets once a month. For the past several years, those meetings have been the first Wednesday evening of each month, although that could change based on members’ schedules.  

Board members should not miss more than three consecutive meetings without providing a reason such as work, illness, etc. Board Members are encouraged to find an area of interest to work on for the Festival and for Committee Work.