About | The Madison Parks Foundation
About the Madison Parks Foundation
Since 1894, Madison Parks have added richness and vibrancy to the landscape of Madison. As the non-profit partner of Madison Parks, the Madison Parks Foundation helps our community conserve, promote, and enhance our parks. We exist to support Madison’s world-class parks system. In addition to our work helping neighborhoods steward improvements to their parks, we’ve identified three areas that advance our equity and programming goals for Madison's Parks.
Staff & Board Members
Executive Director: Stephanie Franklin
Stephanie puts her 20+ years of development experience to work raising funds and awareness for our amazing Madison Parks. She grew up in McFarland, just outside of Madison and has had the pleasure of enjoying Madison parks for her entire life. She is proud to be the Foundation's first employee (since 2013) furthering its mission of ensuring access and inclusiveness to our 280+ Madison Parks.
Marketing Director: Sam Sullivan
Sam brings 18 years of graphic design and marketing strategy experience to the Foundation. She and her husband moved to Madison in 2017 and love exploring the area's parks, local shops and restaurants, and unique events — like Picnic in the Park! After working in agencies, corporate and freelance roles, she's excited to put her passion for design and storytelling to use for an organization dedicated to bettering our community. You can find Sam snowshoeing in the winter, chasing her two tiny tots around Elver Park Splash Pad in the summer, and walking the trails at Hoyt Park in between!
President: Ty Beck
Ty is a Vice President of Business Banking at Oak Bank. He was born and raised in Oshkosh and has lived in the Madison area for more than 20 years. Ty is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Anthropology with an emphasis in Archaeology. He worked six years as a research archaeologist in the back country of Alaska prior to starting his finance career in 2002. Ty and his family are very active, and they enjoy most outdoor activities, particularly running, triathlons, and cycling. Ty is dedicated to the mission of the Foundation and is truly passionate about doing his part to pass on the gift of parks for the generations to come.
Vice President: Kyle Engelke
Kyle grew up in New Glarus and fondly recalls the many childhood trips to Vilas Park for a picnic and visit to the zoo. He has called Madison home since he began his undergraduate studies for a journalism degree and finished with a law degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, proudly calling himself a “Double Badger.” Today, Kyle is a partner with the law firm Stafford Rosenbaum LLP, and as a trial attorney, he advocates for his clients by telling their stories - a role he tries to fill for the Foundation as well. Kyle discovered the Foundation when he learned that his firm traces its origins to John Olin, the same man who helped found the Madison Park and Pleasure Drive Association. Now that he and his wife, Mary (and their Australian Shepherds) have put down their roots in Madison, Kyle is honored to serve on the board and play a small part in helping preserve and cultivate the legacy built by others in the city he now calls home.
Treasurer: Julie Bogle
Julie was born in Monona, Wisconsin, across the street from Winnequah (Dream) Park. As a child, she watched Eric and Beth Heiden skate on Madison's ice rinks before they became famous. After living in other, less beautiful places, Julie returned to Madison to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she received a B.A. and a law degree. She is a tax partner at BDO USA, LLC.
Secretary: Jason Iverson
Jason grew up farming outside of Platteville Wisconsin. He went to school for electronic engineering, while working full-time farming. Jason put his IT skills to work at several different companies before deciding to build his own IT consulting company, after building into a solid company, decided to sell it and make a career shift to put his people skills to work Real Estate as a sales agent and consultant with Coldwell Banker Success. Making a commitment to his community is vitally important to who he is, Jason is incredibly honored to have the opportunity to serve on the board for the Foundation so he can share his love of Madison Parks with those who have helped create and maintain Madison's bountiful parks system and all that they offer to our amazing city and it’s incredible people.
Past President: Maureen Lokrantz
Maureen is a wealth advisor at U.S. Bank, Private Wealth Management. While not born in Madison, she has lived in the Madison area for more than 30 years and loves Madison's parks. “Our parks are the few places where everyone in the community comes together, whether to relax, play, exercise, spend time with family, neighbors or pets, show support for a cause or just to connect with nature. I believe parks reflect their surrounding neighborhoods and like everything, they need care and support. The Foundation is dedicated to keeping parks accessible to all and to the preservation and development of our parks and green spaces.”
Board Member: Joe Clausius
Joe served four terms as Madison City Council Alder for District 17 (far east side). During that time, his favorite assignment was alder representative for the Madison Parks Commission. A native of Richland Center, he earned a bachelor's degree in political science from University of Wisconsin-Platteville and spent 33 years as a health lobbyist at American Family Insurance. Joe has also served as an alder on the Sun Prairie City Council and spearheaded the construction of the first community aquatic center in Dane County. Joe is an officer in the Clarendon Hills Homeowners Association and supporter of Friends of Starkweather Creek. He is affiliated with the summer “Concerts on the Square” series since its inception and is currently the concert volunteer coordinator. Joe and his wife, Marti, consider our park system to be on of Madison's greatest assets and serves and support the Foundation with a passion.
Board Member: Kristin Kupres
Kristin is a senior account supervisor at Kennedy Communications, a Madison-based advertising agency. In 2017, she served as the youngest president in the history of the American Advertising Federation - Madison Chapter and was also named one of InBusiness Magazine's 40 under 40. Although Kristin did not grow up in the Madison-area, she fell in love with the city, culture, and green spaces while attending UW-Madison where she graduated with a communication arts degree. While many enjoy the parks in the warmer months, Kristin prefers to use area parks during the winter season for cross country skiing and ice skating, and thawing out by the fire afterward. Her love of the outdoors and preserving natural spaces led her to the Madison Parks Foundation. Kristin formed the Foundation's Marketing Committee to build awareness of Madison Parks and raise funds for their enhancement and preservation.
Board Member: Catie McDonald
Prior to moving to Madison in 2007, Catie was spoiled by living incredibly close to national parkland. She grew up in lower Alabama, just a short drive from the Gulf Islands National Seashore and then later attended grad school right outside of the Smoky Mountain National Park. It is easy to take this access for granted, so she’s incredibly thankful to serve on the Madison Parks Foundation Board to be able to preserve this access for generations to come.
Catie serves as the Madison Board of Park Commissioners liaison to the Madison Parks Foundation Board. Outside of parks, she is employed in the credit union industry and has served on a local credit union board. Catie is very active in her neighborhood association and was instrumental in creating the Eken Park Festival. She enjoys traveling, hosting parties, learning anything and everything, yoga, spending lots of time with her dog, Ozzie, and has recently become obsessed with gardening. Catie is a graduate of the University of Alabama and has a master’s degree from the University of Tennessee.
Board Member: Claire Oleksiak
Claire's love of parks is fueled by a deep appreciation for the environmental and community connections. Her perfect day is one spent in a Madison Park and she enjoys exploring different parks around the city. Some of her favorite park activities include playing on a playground or in natural areas with her children, swimming at the beaches, sledding down a snow covered hill and enjoying a run/bike along a park path. Born and raised in Madison; she holds a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and a master’s degree from Oxford University. She has worked on local community and economic development, including park planning and operations, in Washington, DC. Upon returning to Madison, she worked on staff at the City of Madison Parks Division where she facilitated public-private partnerships, managed community facilities, and implemented the Connecting Children to Nature Initiative. Currently, Claire is the Executive Director of Sustain Dane, a non-profit with the mission to inspire, connect, and support people to accelerate sustainable actions for community well-being. Claire is passionate about innovation, collaboration, public space activation, diversity & inclusion, and social impact. She is thrilled to be a part of the Madison Parks Foundation Board.
Board Member: Pierce Sullivan
Pierce is a Program Veterinarian within the Research Animal Resources and Compliance department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He and his wife moved from Memphis, TN in the fall of 2017 having never lived anywhere outside of the South. One of the first things about Madison they noticed were the number and quality of public parks they saw while exploring the city. Being a person who loves the outdoors (even the winter activities), he has enjoyed experiencing and learning more about the many opportunities the park system within Madison provides for families. He now looks forward to serving on the Board and providing any support he can to help preserve and improve the park system so that future generations will be able to enjoy them, as well.
- Lynn Adams
- Trudy Barash
- Chad Bartell
- Linda Bellman
- Sarah Bewitz
- Dorothy Borchardt*
- Bill Barker
- Joel DeSpain
- Toni Drake
- Kristine Euclide
- Alex Evans
- Grant Frautschi
- Al Friedman
- Candy Gialamas*
- Randy Glysch*
- Emily Gnam
- Bob Hemauer
- Gigi Holland*
- Chuck Koval*
- Melanie Kranz
- Molly Lahr
- Don Last*
- Madelyn Leopold
- Betty MacDonald
- Malea Martin
- Nancy Mead
- Sally Miley
- Brennan Nardi
- Dan Petersen*
- Betsy Repaske
- Santiago Rosas*
- Emanuel Scarbrough
- Susan Schmitz
- Gail Selk*
- Jean Stewart*
- Anna Trull
- David Wallner
- Bill White
- Charlie Wills
- Dick Zillman*
- *Founding board member
Parks reflect the quality of life that we value in our community and provide us with the opportunity to
connect with nature, with the beauty of our public spaces, and with our neighbors.
The Madison Parks Foundation Circle is comprised of some of our partners, key stakeholders, business leaders and park advocates. Members of the Foundation Circle support the Madison Parks Foundations goals of advocating for inclusiveness, accessibility, equity and sustainability.
Foundation Circle members have and will continue to:
- lend their expertise,
- recommend opportunities to further deepen community engagement,
- introduce us to community leaders, organizations and park enthusiasts
- offer mentorship to staff and board members, and
- help us make a meaningful impact to our parks for generations to come.
The Madison Parks Foundation is proud to have the following individuals as part of our Foundation Circle:
Howie and Pam Erlanger
Grant and Sarah Frautschi
“There is nothing so American as our (national) parks. The scenery and the wildlife are native. The fundamental idea behind the parks is native. It is, in brief, that the country belongs to the people, that it is in the process of making for the enrichment of the lives of all of us. The parks stand as the outward symbol of the great human principle.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt