Our Volunteer Officers

Julie Ekberg


Julie Ekberg has been working at Alerus Financial for 31 years as an accounting operations specialist. She’s been with the Santa Claus Girls since 2010 as one of the toy buyers. Previous volunteer work includes the Alerus Relay for Life team where she served as a co-captain for 2 years, as well as helping with the shopping with Sox’s for Kids in the Manvel School District.

Jennifer Ekberg

Vice President & Shopper

Jennifer Ekberg is a mortgage loan originator at Benchmark Mortgage. She’s been with the Santa Claus Girls program since 2009. Current volunteer work includes firearm safety instructor since 2011, Circle of Friends and Journey Home Animal Rescue foster parent. Jen also delivers Meals On Wheels in her free time. She is passionate about giving back to our community.

Karen Bjornseth


Karen Bjornseth is currently working at Bell Bank. She has served on the Santa Claus Girls board for 4 years. Previous volunteer experience includes an officer in local chapters of the Air Force Sergeants Association in many locations, leader of multiple fund raising activities for different charities and has been in charge of an annual free gift wrapping booth on previous military installations. She’s also been a Boy Scout Leader and a Girl Scout Leader.

Allison Peterson

Creative & Marketing

Allison Peterson is the Director of the Grand Forks Public Schools’ Summer Performing Arts Company (SPA). She has worked for SPA since 1997. A native of Grand Forks, Allison is excited to be a part of the Santa Claus Girls, as she loves to give back to the community

Carol Schneweis

Treasurer & More

As a grandma who is retired from the Department of Social Work at UND, I have been a part of Santa
Claus Girls since Christmas 1999 when I was a school social worker and helped deliver unclaimed
packages. Over the years I became increasingly active and joined the board in 2001. While the board
members have changed over the years, the spirit of Christmas and the mission of Santa Claus Girls has
remained true and strong. I am proud to be a part of this amazing organization.

Theresa Polkinghorne

Board Member at large

Theresa is currently at American Crystal Sugar as a janitor/sweeper. I have been with them just over a year and enjoy it. I love to give back to my community and look forward to this project every year. I have been with the Santa Claus Girls program over 5 years.

Want to volunteer with us?

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