Above & Beyond: Joel Moline

October 23, 2013 By: Sara Blair Category: WordPress Import

It all started with a glass of wine. Second Harvest Heartland board member Joel Moline and a group of wine enthusiast friends hosted a charitable wine tasting eight years ago. It was a simple idea and a chance to spend time with friends. They donated the proceeds to Second Harvest Heartland because “everyone can relate to its mission – serving basic needs,” he says. The first event featured high-end wines and auction items, and was successful “beyond our wildest dreams,” says Joel. Vintner Ball was born, and Second Harvest Heartland found one of its biggest volunteer champions.

After organizing the first successful Vintner Ball, Joel and the other hosts were hooked. He got to know Second Harvest Heartland staff and joined the Board of Directors in 2009. As Vintner Ball has grown, so has Joel’s commitment to our organization. For example, he leverages his membership in The Wine Forum, an organization of global business leaders who combine their love of wine with philanthropy. Last March, 30 members came to Minnesota from as far away as India to attend Vintner Ball, tour our Maplewood facility and attend a separate wine dinner to raise funds for Second Harvest Heartland. “The motto of The Wine Forum is ‘In Vino Caritas’ or ‘in wine there is charity,’ says Joel. “Vintner Ball brings those words to life.”

Wine is only one of the ways Joel engages people with Second Harvest Heartland. In 2012, he connected the organization with the organizers of the Principal Financial Charity Bass Tournament, a fundraising event on Lake Minnetonka that pairs attendees with professional fishing guides.

As a Senior Vice President and Financial Advisor with Merrill Lynch, he also sits on the Community Volunteer Committee for the Minnesota Region of Bank of America and recently helped promote a food repacking event for B of A employees. He is also a member of the Lakeview Hospital Foundation Board in Stillwater, where he lives.

Joel credits his parents for his philanthropic spirit. “They instilled in us that we are stewards of our resources, not owners. Your money is not all yours,” he says.

Joel, if you were a wine, you’d be a rare vintage. Thanks for going above and beyond for Second Harvest Heartland!

Vintner Ball has raised more than $1,212,000 for Second Harvest Heartland since its inception in 2006. Next year’s event is planned for March 1, 2014, at the Westin Galleria Hotel in Edina.

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