The Men and Women Who Champion the Cause
The board members of Austin’s House, Inc. are individuals who donate their time to the mission of Austin’s House. Compensation is neither requested nor given. Please meet our board:
Luke Pohl, President – Luke is the father of Austin, a young man who is challenged by autism and many other neurological disorders. He is a co-founder of Austin’s House, Inc. Luke is a Central Michigan University graduate and is co-owner of the Pohl Oil Company Travel Plaza. Luke has a great love of working with the young men of the community and has served for the past 31 years, now in the capacity of varsity basketball coach at Pewamo-Westphalia High School.
George Heckman, Vice President – George is the father of a young man who is challenged daily with severe cerebral palsy and is a wheelchair user. George, a Michigan State University graduate, is principal of Pewamo-Westphalia Elementary, as well as the special education director for the Pewamo-Westphalia School District. George was active with the youth of the community when he served as the varsity football coach at Pewamo-Westphalia High School a number of years ago.
Jordan Thelen, Treasurer – Jordan is originally from Westphalia, Michigan and attained his Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Central Michigan University. His experience includes three years at a public accounting firm where he worked as a CPA, and is currently working for a furniture manufacturer as a financial analyst. He and his wife currently reside in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Jordan is supportive of the mission of Austin’s House and the need to assist those with disabilities by providing a safe, well-maintained place for them to call home.
Janet Pohl, Secretary – Janet is the mother of Austin, a young man who is challenged by many neurological disorders, chiefly autism. She is a co-founder of Austin’s House, Inc. Janet offers her research and knowledge of various neurological disorders as well as how to lovingly strategize and deal with individuals who are severely behaviorally challenged. Janet brings to the board her past experience as an executive secretary in the public sector.
Jeanne Heckman, Trustee – Jeanne is the mother of a young man who is challenged daily with severe cerebral palsy and is a wheelchair user. In her position with the Michigan Commission on Disability Concerns and Division on Deaf and Hard of Hearing, she advocates for the rights of persons with disabilities. Jeanne brings to the board her vast experience of lovingly caring for a medically fragile child, as well as having grown up in a home with a father who is deaf.
Lee Klein, Trustee – Lee is a life-long resident of Westphalia is the owner of Klein Cabinets and Interiors. Lee is a volunteer fire fighter for Westphalia and donates his time to other community fundraisers and activities, as well. Besides a concern for the less fortunate, Lee brings to the board his business experience and knowledge in construction.
Lisa Werner, Trustee – Lisa is a life-long resident in the area who brings a wealth of knowledge from her days of caring for extended family members and others who fall within a broad range of developmental and medical disabilities. It is because of these experiences that Lisa went on to receive her Associates Degree in nursing from Montcalm Community College and is now working as a registered nurse at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, Michigan.