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Boreal Community Media

Meet your Cook County neighbor: Introducing Jes Rodne

Sep 10, 2022 06:29AM ● By Editor
Submitted photo 

A Boreal Community Media Exclusive - September 10, 2022

What is your favorite part about living in Cook County?

My family has lived here for many generations and I’ve seen many changes, but my one consistent favorite is Lake Superior. There is a moment after you’ve been away from the lake, that you come back and when you first see her…. you instantly feel you are home.

Where in the world would you travel if you had an all-expense paid vacation, and why?

For my 16 yr old son at home, I would take him somewhere warm and fun, like Florida. 

For me, I would retrace my son Gunnar’s trip through South East Asia. 

He spent 4 months over there before he died. I am still in contact with some of the students/adults that he crossed paths with and someday, I hope to go and see what he saw.

Best advice you have ever been given?

Just love. Have boundaries, but when possible give, help and love. 

Favorite day off activity?  

My son, Rayce, plays football and hockey. Watching him is a big source of joy for me but if I have a day off and there is no game or traveling for sports- I am a huge fan of our lakes & land. Hiking, swimming, sitting on the beach, crocheting… those are my happy places.

Fun facts that people would not know about you?  

I’m a pretty open book but some don’t know that I have a degree in Law Enforcement, have been S.W.A.T. trained and I am also on the national registry for being a (living) kidney and bone marrow donor. 

Three words people would use to describe you?

I reached out to some friends/family for this one and the 3 most common words I got back were Survivor, Resilient/undefeated and Loyal. 

I asked my 16 yr old and he said "You’re a good mom, you’re funny and you are a good cook".  

Fill in the blanks.  My favorite dining spot in the County is ___ and the best thing on their menu is ___.

This is a tough one to narrow down because we have so many good eating options in this county!

Trail Center- Walleye Sandwich 

Fisherman’s Daughter- Best soups ever!

Gunflint Tavern- Vegetarian Chili & Ahi!

Angry Trout- Wild rice salad with fresh fish!

Birch Terrace- Reuben Sandwich 

Tell us a bit about Operation Family Christmas.  How did you get involved with this?  What can the community do to help you?

OFC started years ago by a group of women who had a vision to help families in our community that may struggle with providing their children with gifts for Christmas.

As a child my grandma ran a similar program through the Senior Center and I helped her with it so it was always on my heart to be a part of something like that.  I lived in Wisconsin for a year while doing college and one of my assignments was to become a part of a community project. That led me to their Christmas program. That led me down a road that changed my life. I was able to deliver gifts to families that had one or both parents serving active duty and when delivering the gifts, I was met by the most gracious and grateful people ever. A lot of tears were shed and I knew this was something I wanted to pursue- in some form. 

When I moved back home, the opportunity came up for me to run this program and I knew it was meant to be. 

It has been 8 years since I took over the program and I am so proud of it. For anyone wanting to be a part of it- whether donating or needing to apply for services please contact me at (218) 370-2019 or [email protected]

Finally, what are the most important words to live by?

We don’t have to understand each other but we should still be kind to one another. 

Boreal Ship Spotter - larger view here