Board of Directors

David Huber
David Huber

President/Budget & Finance Committee


David Huber’s day job is as the pastor of Plymouth United Church of Christ in Eau Claire, WI. Originally an engineer, his professional life has included working in retail, a pre-school, the consulting firm McKinsey & Co., and investment banking in NYC at Lehman Brothers. He’s also served churches in Honolulu, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and now Eau Claire. His other interests include making and performing music, art, writing, cooking, and political activism. David is very happy to serve on the board of NSR because of its mission of providing gentle and reasoned voices of justice and peace as an alternative to a culture and media environment that is too often not that, and very loudly not that. To a culture in which the correctness of one’s position is equated with the volume at which proclaims it, NSR provides a quiet voice of thoughtful sensitivity to truth.

Sandy McKinney
Sandy McKinney

Secretary/Intellectual Property Management & Ownership

Sandra McKinney served as minister at Unity Christ Center in Eau Claire for 14 years, retiring in 2016. An Eau Claire resident since 1993, Sandra is an active volunteer in Chippewa Valley organizations, a past president of Junior League Eau Claire she currently serves as President of JONAH (Joining Our Neighbors Advancing Hope). In addition to NSR she is also on the board for Chippewa Valley Post. Elected to public office in 2015, Sandra is an Eau Claire County Board Supervisor representing District 2 and says, "I have passion for social justice issues and making Eau Claire County a community that works for all people".  She has an associate's degree in hospitality management from Chippewa Valley Technical College, a bachelor's degree in business management from Cardinal Stritch University and a master of divinity degree from the Unity School of Christianity.

Mark Helpsmeet
Mark Helpsmeet

Treasurer/Content Producer

A graduate of Oconomowoc High School and Carroll University, Mark Helpsmeet is the founder and driving force behind Northern Spirit Radio. From 1977 to 1979, he volunteered with the Peace Corps in Togo. After his return to the US, Mark became a member of the Society of Friends in 1980, and taught introductory physics at UW-Milwaukee from 1981 to 1986. In 1988, he moved to Eau Claire and started Infinity Software Solutions. In 2005, Mark started Northern Spirit Radio.

In addition to Infinity Software and Northern Spirit Radio, Mark is also a founding member of the Friendly Folkdancers.

Andrew Janssen
Andrew Janssen

Content Editor & Website Support

A graduate of UW-Eau Claire, Andrew continues a proud family tradition of working in a field with very little connection to his undergraduate degree. He provides editing & production assistance for Northern Spirit Radio's programs, and also works to keep the website from falling over. He provides similar website help to the Chippewa Valley Post.'

Andrew has been a volunteer, off and on, for the Eau Claire Children's Theatre since 1994.

Jim Hawthorne Jim Hawthorne is a resident of Tacoma, Washington. An alumni of Bate Technical School Radio Broadcast Program, his lifelong interest in Music, Humor and Radio has had him serving a number of small stations over the years. Jim is an active Member of Olympic View Friends Church.
Patti Cleary Patti Cleary works as a chemistry professor at the University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire. She has lived and worked/studied in Minnesota, Wisconsin, California, Pennsylvania and the UK. Her research focuses on atmospheric chemistry and air quality. She is a member of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Eau Claire. She has explored many hobbies which have included rock climbing, doing triathlons and being a member of several improv theater troupes, a hand-bell choir, a samba band, and a roller derby team. She has volunteered with community radio stations WMCN (Macalester College) and KALX (UC-Berkeley). She currently enjoys peaceful protests, CrossFit classes, walking her dog, running, bicycling, hiking and flying her drone for scientific research purposes.
Damian O'Brien
Damian O'Brien

Formal Education : Marquette HS, St Norbert College, UW Milwaukee, UW Madison, UW Eau Claire, UW Stout

Life learning: caddy and pro shop Milwaukee country Club, AO Smith factory work in Milwaukee, encyclopedia sales Milwaukee, farm hand Cadott, nursing home orderly Eau Claire, cab driver NYC, outreach health with Community Medical Corps, South Bronx NYC, UW Eau Claire Admission Counselor-Multicultural focus, parenting my nephew, co-founder Chippewa Valley Post and The Valley Voice.

Travel:  Canada, Mexico, Brazil, France, Holland, Belgium, hitch-hiked and worked way across US.

Passion and activism:, peace, justice, media reform, environmental sustainability, universal health care, economic justice, nature, my partner, my cat, my friends, people and the planet.