There’s no hero award at the Eden Prairie Community Foundation. But if one existed, its first recipients would be Mary Mackmiller and David Lindahl.
Mary and David are community leaders, former Foundation board members, and the respective chairs of our two major and very successful annual events: EP Gives and Prairie Brewfest. Mary has chaired EP Gives ever since it was created in 2013 as the successor to the Foundation Ball, and David has led the Prairie Brewfest from its founding in 2014 as our second major event of the year.
Let’s be clear about something: I believe we all know there are two kinds of event chairs – those who are mostly honorary and spend time orchestrating others, and those who not only plan and lead but shoulder a big share of the actual “doing.” (Those of you who are involved in civic organizations, nonprofits, churches and other organizations know what I mean.)
Mary and David definitely fall in the latter category, as dreamers AND doers. As executive director of the Foundation, I get paid to do what I do. Mary and David do not – and yet, I often find it difficult to keep pace with their involvement and enthusiasm. The big picture and the little details do not escape them, even as EP Gives and Prairie Brewfest evolve and grow.
You should not be surprised, therefore, that they are also very successful in their careers: Mary as co-owner of mackmiller design + build with husband Mark, and David as economic development director for the City of Eden Prairie. Mary and David are big reasons why both entities are award winners.
Events are a big undertaking for a small organization like the Foundation. When you have dedicated volunteer leaders like Mary Mackmiller and David Lindahl, things become a lot easier. They’re my heroes, and I’m not ashamed to admit it.