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38 years ago, several local churches sought a solution. 

Stepping Stones marked its 38th anniversary in 2024. The organization, originally called Interfaith Volunteers, began in 1986 when several local churches, concerned about the unmet needs of elderly residents in Dunn County, began what is now known as the Community Connections Program.  Volunteers were linked to seniors and people with disabilities to provide services which enabled them to live independently as long as possible. In 1994, community leaders began investigating the need for a homeless shelter.  This resulted in the opening of the first Stepping Stones Shelter, offering transitional and emergency shelter, case management, and housing referral services.  In 2014, in order to address increased need, we expanded the shelter program to an additional location so more people could be served. In 1996, the organization's third program, the Food Pantry, began to offer free food to low income households.  Initially, the pantry was located in the basement of the Broadway shelter as a compliment to services already provided there, but growing demand required successive moves to larger facilities. Since 2011 the pantry and Stepping Stones’ offices have been located at 1602 Stout Rd., Menomonie.  This space is over twice the size of the previous one and positions Stepping Stones to serve the community for many years to come.


What Guides Us

We believe in Justice & Sustainability

We strive to foster a community

• All people have the right to 

  nutritious food, adequate housing, 

  and other needed support services.
• Sufficient resources exist in our 

  community to provide supportive 

  services and prevent hunger and

• Stepping Stones advocates for the

  just and equitable sharing of

• Stepping Stones is committed to the

  sustainable use of resources,

  including economic, environmental,

  and personal resources to assure

  their availability and abundance in

  the present and the future.

• Individuals reach their full

  potential, and achieve balance

  and wellness through connections

  to community.
• Stepping Stones’ services provide

  bridges to community, to stability,

  and to self-sufficiency.
• Community is fostered by

  nurturing inclusivity and diversity.

We are committed to Compassionate Work & Service

• The effectiveness, talent, and

  commitment of volunteers and staff

  are critical to the success of

  Stepping Stones’ mission.
• Staff must be equipped to

  accomplish their responsibilities,

  and provided with just

• Clients, volunteers, and staff

  cooperate to create a caring,

  respectful, trusting atmosphere and

  to engage in work that is mutually

• Work and service spaces that are

  pleasant, well maintained, and

  suited to the needs of the service

  will best facilitate Stepping Stones’


We support Inclusivity

  • Stepping Stones does not discriminate in employment matters or in providing its services by reason of a person’s age, race, creed, color, disability, marital status, family status, sex, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, arrest record, conviction record, political affiliation, membership in the national guard, state defense force or any other reserve component of the military forces of the United States or this state.

Meet The Team

Board of Directors

President: Barbara Fagan, Asst. Corporation Counsel, Dunn County
Vice-President: Jerry Porter,
Retired Engineering Manager, 3M
Treasurer: George Brewe, Business Banker, Bremer Bank
Secretary: Nichole Manson,
Recovering Addict & Advocate for Sustainable Food Usage
Bev Deyo-Svendsen, Retired Academic Dept. Associate, UW-Stout

Maggie Fischer, Sr. Engagement Specialist-Vol. Serv., American Red Cross

Nina Koch, Retired Educator

Katie Kramschuster, Librarian, UW-Stout

Stacy Nelson, Director of Nutrition Services, Menomonie Area School District

Paul Schwartz, Rehabilitation engineer, Business owner

Rod Smeltzer, Retired Dunn County Circuit Court Judge

Wendy Slaback, Pastor, Menomonie United Methodist Church

Matt Swenson, IT Operations Supervisor, WESTconsin Credit Union

Rachael Taylor, Physician Assistant, Mayo Clinic Health Systems



Padraig Gallagher


Dana Neil

Assistant Director-Development & Public Relations

Phone ext. 211


Mai Nou Hang


Katlynn Pichler


Rochelle Weber

Shelter Program Assistant



Angie Wolf


Amanda Davis


Jon Oakland


Brit Blankenheim


Julie Bendel

Volunteer Coordinator

Ext. 205


Henry Amberson


Mike Racette

Farmers Feed Dunn County Coordinator

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