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Changed lives marked the beginning of Hope for Uganda. When the Bishop of Gulu sent a young priest, Fr. Matthew Odong, on a mission to Minnesota in 1990 little did Fr. Matthew know his story would capture the hearts of Dan and Bobbi Vaughan. Captivated by the Ugandan priest’s charisma and intelligence, the Vaughans invited him into their lives. They gave him his first ice cream, and listened as the young servant of God told them of life in his beloved, but war-torn, homeland.


Working in collaboration with our Executive Director, the Board of Directors is responsible for fundraising, leadership and direction of Hope for Uganda, review of financial information sent from the two schools, review of grant requests from the schools, approval of all funds sent to the Archdiocese for the use of the schools, and general promotion of Sacred Heart Seminary and Archbishop Flynn Secondary School in the Archdiocese of Gulu, Uganda.

Board Members

  • Chairman of the Board — Bill Kottemann
  • Treasurer — Corrina Conley
  • Secretary — Joe Ditsch
  • Projects Committee Chair — Mark Whims
  • Advancement Committee Co-Chair — Jerry Powaser
  • Advancement Committee Co-Chair — Sheila Kruesel
From its inception, Hope for Uganda has been organized and operated solely by volunteers. Pressing financial and operational demands resulting from the amazing progress being made at the schools demonstrated the need to add a full-time staff member to the organization. In November 2016, Todd Ziesmer was selected by the Board of Directors to be Hope for Uganda’s Executive Director.

Todd’s qualifications for this job are unique. He not only brings 30 years of business experience in growth and development activities, including service to non-profit organizations such as Legatus, Relevant Radio, and the World Apostolate of Fatima, but has also been a longtime supporter of Hope for Uganda in a very personal way. Todd is married to Dan and Bobbi Vaughan’s daughter, Marie. They live in Orono, MN, have four grown children and three grandchildren. Together they have known Monsignor Matthew since his dream began to provide education for the children of his homeland. If there’s a story, Todd has heard it, a roadblock he has prayed for it, and has rejoiced as each new dream became a reality.
The Advancement Committee has been formed to develop and coordinate activities to “fund the mission” through conducting parish appeal visits, publication of a quality newsletter, doing social media outreach, holding appreciation events, and making radio appearances.







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PO Box 1863, Minnetonka, MN 55345 — 952.222.8330

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