Executive Director, Medica Foundation
JoAnn Birkholz has been with Medica since 1999 and is the director of the Medica Foundation. In 2003, when Medica separated from Allina Health System, JoAnn built the Medica Foundation from the ground up. During this re-establishment of the Medica Foundation, she led the development of infrastructure and processes which have paved the way for today’s growth.
JoAnn is an active member with the Minnesota Council on Foundations and Minnesota Council of Nonprofits. She served on the board of the Minnesota Council on Foundations from 2013 – 2018, where she was Board Secretary and chair of the Membership Committee. She is currently a member of the MCF Governance Committee.
JoAnn volunteers for a variety of nonprofit organizations, and has served on several nonprofit boards. She is past board chair for the Wayzata Lake Effect Conservancy, and past board member for Bolder Options.
After earning her undergraduate degree in Nursing from the University of Tulsa, JoAnn went on to obtain her master’s degree in Business Administration from the Keller Graduate School of Management. Before joining the Medica Foundation, Ms. Birkholz held several positions in the health care industry, including managed care, home care consulting and direct hospital nursing. Her background as a registered nurse has been invaluable in connecting with the work of the Medica Foundation to improve the health of our communities.
Senior Grants Specialist, Medica Foundation
Heather Craig joined Medica in 1998 and has been with the Medica Foundation since 2006. As the Sr. Grants Specialist Heather is responsible for the grants management and reporting processes at the Medica Foundation. In her role, she also supports the volunteer committees that make grant making decisions and provide grant oversight.
Heather is a long-standing member of the Grant Partnership Committee and enjoys working with grantees that support children, families and LGBTQ issues. She has served on the steering committee of PEAK Grantmaking and has been the regional chair for PEAK. Heather earned her BA from Macalester College and worked at United HealthCare before coming to Medica.
Senior Program Manager, Medica Foundation
As a Sr. Program Manager for the Medica Foundation, Shelly d’Almeida leads community giving in Nebraska, and supports corporate-wide community engagement and volunteerism efforts. Shelly has a strong background in both nonprofit development and corporate philanthropy, and enjoys working to support nonprofit organizations that are making a difference in communities across the country. She joined the Medica Foundation team in 2019.
Shelly has her undergraduate degree in English and Communications from the University of Minnesota. After teaching English in Japan for two years, she started her career in international philanthropy working in New York City for an organization supporting children’s healthcare in Cambodia. Shelly attained her master’s degree in International Relations from Webster University in Geneva, Switzerland and continued to work to support international philanthropy projects around the world.
After returning to Minnesota in 2012, Shelly took the opportunity to work in corporate philanthropy, viewing her work from a different lens. Prior to working at the Medica Foundation she was a Community Affairs Consultant for the Wells Fargo Foundation, managing strategic philanthropy in three states, including charitable giving and volunteerism. She has a long history of volunteering for and supporting a number of nonprofit organizations, and enjoys working with a variety of nonprofits that support community health.
Gina DiMaggio joined the Medica Foundation in 2016. As a Senior Program Manager, she leads and mentors the Grant Partnership Council and oversees strategic and behavioral health grants. She enjoys sharing stories of successful grants to highlight their victories and finding creative ways to support grant partners.
Gina got her community organizing start in Costa Rica where she helped create the first recycling program in the district to improve waste management and environmental conditions in a community heavily reliant on tourism. She brings six years of grant program and grants management experience from the Pohlad Family Foundation where she managed several program areas, organized employee volunteer projects and oversaw special funding projects including a volunteer effort to commemorate the 2014 All-Star baseball game. She serves on the board of directors of The Arc of Minnesota. Previously she served on the communications committee and board of the Corporate Volunteerism Council-Twin Cities.
Gina studied in 11 countries while earning her B.A. with high honors from Eckerd College in Saint Petersburg, Florida.
Program Manager, Medica Foundation
As a Program Manager for the Medica Foundation, Taneal Palmer manages the full grant making cycle with grant partners. She focuses on developing relationships by aligning the foundation's giving priorities to support the work of the nonprofit sector. Taneal partners with grantees to establish a plan to measure and evaluate their program success and impact.
Taneal’s career has been focused on Early Childhood Development and its impact on adulthood. In her previous work as a Home Visitor, she encouraged family empowerment with the goal of improved health outcomes and ending generational cycles of abuse. Taneal is a dedicated community leader. She serves on the Minnesota Council on Foundations Finance, Administration and Audit Committee. She is also a member of the Community Leadership Council for the Little Moments Count initiative.
Taneal received her Bachelor of Science in Health Administration and Healthcare Management from the University of Phoenix - College of Health Science and Nursing. Before joining Medica, Taneal worked as a Consultant for both philanthropic and nonprofit entities in areas of: strategic planning; community engagement; grant making; and parent leadership.