About Us

After the loss of his infant daughter, Ken Larson, DDS, began volunteering his time with several national children’s charities in an effort to give back to other families and children in need. In 2006, he founded a local charity in Duluth, Minnesota with the mission of providing financial support to families with children who have life-threatening illnesses.

He chose the name Northern Lights Foundation (NLF) for this new non-profit organization because his vision was to bring some much needed light into the lives of children and families who were experiencing a dark time.

Dr. Larson has served as President of NLF since the beginning, and his son Michael established a second chapter in Twin Cities, Minnesota. Over the past decade, the foundation has raised more than $350,000 and made grants to more than 160 Northland families. Foundation grants are unrestricted which means families can use the funds for whatever needs they may have.

Board of Directors

Ken Larson

Ken Larson, DDS

President & Founder
Northern Lights Foundation

Carrie Baney

Carrie Baney

Executive Director
Fryberger, Buchanan, Smith and Frederick Law Firm

Richard Kanoff

Richard Kanoff, MD

Pediatric Neurologist
Essentia Health

Brett Larson

Brett Larson

Assistant Coach
UMD Men’s Hockey


Scott Lyons

Retired Police Chief
City of Duluth

Ross Perko

Ross Perko, MD

Pediatric Oncologist & Hematologist
Essentia Health

Tim Swanson

Tim Swanson

Customer Development Manager
Advantage Solutions

Bill Watson

Bill Watson

Advisor/Manager Director
Northwestern Mutual

Advisory Board

Josh Berlo
Director of Athletics
University of Minnesota-Duluth

Christian Koelling
Director of Hockey Operations
University of Minnesota-Duluth

Sandy Kolasinski
General Manager
Little Angie’s Restaurant

Michael Larson
Student Liaison
University of  St. Thomas

Berta Lippert
Health & Wellness Specialist

Steve Overom
Attorney at Law
Maki & Overom Law Firm

Tim Thorp
Vice President of Investor Relations

Merry Wallin
Development/Marketing Director
Benedictine Health Center