Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Getting to Know...International Treasurer Gene Brandvold

International Treasurer Gene Brandvold is a busy man. On his second term as treasurer, he took time out from his bowling to talk to me about his membership in Sons since he first joined in 1983.

Q: Favorite Norwegian food?

A: Lefse and torsk.

Q: Favorite Norwegian beverage?

A: Akevit (which Gene said without skipping a beat!).

Q: How many times have you visited Norway?

A: Five times. Myrt [Gene’s wife] has been there seven –not bad for a Swede.

Q: What city in Norway you’ve visited do you like best? Why?

A: I visited the Brandvold family farm twice in Hemsedal. It’s only 10 acres on the side of a mountain. Otherwise, just seeing Norway – it’s so beautiful, the mountains the rivers the valleys.

Q: Why did you join Sons of Norway?

A: At that time, they had on Sunday mornings on WCCO a five minute Sons of Norway show. I called the headquarters and somehow I filled out an application and I ended up in Vonheim. At that time, Vonheim had about 4000 members.

Q: What is your favorite Sons of Norway event in the Twin Cities?

A: Visiting other lodges, attending their events and meeting their members.

Q: What other lodge, district or international positions have you held?

A: International Director for District One, District One President, District One Treasurer and five different offices within Vonheim.
Sounds like Gene is quite the renaissance man.

Q: What made you run for treasurer?

A: Finance is my background, and auditing. The position came open, so why not?

Q: What have you gotten out of being treasurer that you didn’t receive as a district or lodge officer?

A: I guess being involved and making decisions that effect the whole organization. As a member of the executive committee, we get involved more so. It effects the future, you might say. It’s exciting, but at times there’s a little pressure because people want the organization to grow and it’s up to us to approve the programs to make them grow.

When I asked him if there was anything else, Gene told me that he is in the Minneapolis bowling hall of fame for meritorious service. That seems a fitting close.

Get up close with International Vice President Marit Kristiansen in our next installment!

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