Three Northern Michigan University alumni, all of whom reside in the Upper Peninsula, have been appointed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to the NMU Board of Trustees. They are: Brigitte LaPointe-Dunham of Baraga; Steve Lindberg of Marquette; and Greg Toutant of Negaunee.
LaPointe-Dunham is the CEO for the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, a position she has held since July 2021. She previously served in the capacities of director of strategic initiatives and corporate marketing manager for Upper Peninsula Health Plan in Marquette. LaPointe-Dunham earned a bachelor's degree in sports science from NMU in 2009, a master's certificate in performance improvement-training & development in 2012, and a master's in exercise science in 2015. She also holds a master's degree in management, strategy and leadership from Michigan State University, and a certificate from Harvard Business School in leading people and investing to build sustainable communities.
“Northern Michigan University was a life-changing experience for me and will always hold a special place in my heart,” said LaPointe-Dunham. “I am honored to serve the faculty, administration and students at NMU as a trustee. Education is the one thing that can never be taken away from someone and can create empowerment for individuals on many different levels in any stage of life. I am looking forward to working with everyone to create transformational change for the university and beyond.”
Lindberg graduated with a bachelor's degree in education from Northern in 1966, and completed a master of arts in education (MAE) in 1978. After retiring from his role as a teacher and guidance counselor for Marquette Public Schools, he served the maximum three terms as a Michigan state representative for the 109th district. Lindberg served as chair of the labor committee and was a member of the following committees during his tenure: education; energy and technology; labor; tourism; and outdoor recreation and natural resources. He is a well-respected wildlife photographer in Marquette.
“I'm delighted to be appointed to Northern's board, and I look forward to working with the new president and my fellow trustees to make sure the university continues to provide a quality education to students, who are the priority,” Lindberg said. “It's going to be a learning process, but that will start with our first meeting that's coming up. Northern's my alma mater and an important part of the community. I feel I have something to contribute. I still have some connections in Lansing and, living in Marquette, I'm able to interact with a lot of students in various venues about their Northern experience.”
Toutant is chief executive officer of Great Lakes Recovery Centers (GLRC). He has nearly 30 years' experience working in the field of addiction and behavioral health treatment services, holding roles in clinical leadership, mental health provision, and as an advanced addiction counselor and clinical supervisor. Under his leadership, GLRC has expanded its scope beyond its longtime role of addressing substance abuse to providing a wide range of behavioral health treatment and prevention services throughout the Upper Peninsula. Toutant's role in that effort, combined with his active community involvement, earned him NMU's 2020 Alumni Service Award. He graduated from Northern in 1994 with a bachelor's degree in history, and later completed a master's degree in clinical counseling from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and a health policy fellowship at the University of Michigan.
"I am humbled and grateful to help serve Northern Michigan University, its students, faculty, staff and community,” Toutant said. “It is deeply meaningful to help give back to a university that has provided so much to me throughout my life.”
The new appointees will participate in their first board gathering, an on-campus retreat, Feb. 16-17.
“The board is very excited with the quality of the individuals appointed and the diverse experiences and perspectives they bring to the table,” said Board Chair Steve Young. “It's also great that they all graduated from Northern. We are happy to be back at full strength with all of the trustee vacancies filled. These are exciting times with a new president who started this week and a new board assembled and ready to get to work.”
Find more information on the NMU Board of Trustees here.