JA of Northern Indiana-St. Joseph County | Junior Achievement of Northern Indiana, Inc.

St. Joseph County

With the support of educators and community volunteers, Junior Achievement programs serve thousands of students in St. Joseph County every year. These JA experiences are igniting the spark in young people to experience and realize the opportunities and realities of work in a 21st-century global marketplace. During the 2018-2019 school year, over 354 community volunteers partnered with 444 classrooms to impact 10,584 students with JA programs. 
JA is a partnership between the business and education communities that prepare youth for economically independent futures based on strong economic knowledge and solid personal financial management skills.
We want to thank all of the teachers who invite us into their classrooms, our terrific volunteers who use their own experience and expertise to make the JA lessons come alive, and our generous contributors who provide the funding to help us open our students' minds to their potential!
If you are interested in serving on the St. Joseph County Board of Directors, or providing funding for Junior Achievement programming in St. Joseph County K-12 classrooms, please email Dani Elgas or call (563) 676-6200. If you are interested in volunteering to teach JA programming in a local classroom or are a teacher in St. Joseph County who would like to know more about bringing JA programs into your classroom, please email Colleen Hahn or call (574) 252-6056.  
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JA of Northern Indiana- St. Joseph County Events

At JA of Northern Indiana, we host several events throughout the year to raise money to support our programming. These events also engage the community in our efforts to reach students! Whether you'd like to get involved on an individual level or as a business through event sponsorship, we offer several ways for you to support our work while having a great time!

JA Wine and Beer Festival

JA Wine and Beer Festival

When: Friday, August 28, 2020
Where: Four Winds Field
Time: 6-9pm

Enjoy the spacious Four Winds Field where there will be over 75 different samples will be available for unlimited tasting.

Based on input from the St. Joseph County Health Department and in the interest of the health and safety of our participants, volunteers, vendors and sponsors we have implemented some precautionary measures:

  1. We are limiting the number of tickets to 500. There are 100 VIP tickets available and 400 General Admission tickets available.
  2. Vendors will be spread out around the entire concourse to allow for ample physical distancing.
  3. All participants will be required to wear a mask upon entry into the event. A limited number of disposable masks will be available.

JA Fore Impact Golf Outing

JA Fore Impact Golf Outing

When: Coming in August 2021
Where: Knollwood Country Club (Granger, IN)
Time: 11:30 am

Bring a foursome to the Fore Impact Golf Outing and help St. Joseph County empower more than 10,500 students to own their future economic success!

JA St Joseph County Sponsors

$15,000 and Up

First Source Bank logo   Crowe logo

$10,000 and Up

      Lippert Components

$5,000 and Up

Gurley Leep logo           MTC     MTI logo     Nipsco logo

$2,500 and Up

First Merchants Bank     Holladay Properties      Lake City Bank     Quality Dining            Tire Rack     TruPay     Peacock Co


JA of Northern Indiana Executive Members: St. Joseph County

Mike Miller — Chair
Business Development Associate
Weigand Construction
Todd Bruce — President Emeritus
Senior Vice President
Lake City Bank
Stephen Varner — Treasurer
Senior Tax Manager
Kruggel Lawton CPAs

JA of Northern Indiana Board of Directors: St. Joseph County

Dan Asleson — Member
Peacock & Company
David Blank — Member
Salesforce Administrator
Lippert Components
Alex Bowling — Member
Associate Attorney
Jones Obenchain, LLC
Marnie Cornell — Member
Vice President & University Park Branch Manager
Key Bank
Joy Decker — Member
Human Resources Manager
Manufacturing Technology, Inc.
Kevin Fautz — Member
Service Manager
Michele Jurkaites — Member
Senior Director
Laurie Lawson — Member
Branch Manager
United Federal Credit Union
Russ Matthys — Member
Tax Partner
Judd McNally — Member
VP Relationship Manager
Fifth Third Bank
Steve Nilles — Member
Vice President/Investment Officer
Indiana Trust & Wealth Management
Josh Ortiz — Member
Branch Manager
Woodforest National Bank
Tom Ross — Member
First Vice President
First Merchants Bank
Scott Smith — Member
Private Wealth Investor
Smith & Associates
Tasha Stepp — Member
Assistant Branch Manager
Centier Bank
Rene Sanchez — Member
South Bend Community School Corporation
Brandon Williamson — Member
Business Development Officer
First State Bank
Luis Zapata — Member
Vice President Financial Wellness
1st Source Bank
Heather Pond — Board Scribe
Sales Operations Coordinator
Harmony Healthcare, IT


Junior Achievement Facts

What Is Junior Achievement?

Junior Achievement has 109 local JA Areas across the nation, and together we are the nation's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their futures, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA's programs—in the core content areas of work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy—ignite the spark in young people to experience and realize the opportunities and realities of work and life in the 21st century.


Junior Achievement's purpose is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy.


Mr. Richard A. Woods, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs (Retired) of Capital One, is chairman of the Junior Achievement USA board of directors. Jack E. Kosakowski is the president and chief executive officer of Junior Achievement. Junior Achievement USA board members represent a wide range of businesses and academic institutions around the world. In addition, approximately 4,300 board members lead JA Area Offices around the United States. Lena Yarian is the President and CEO of JA of Northern Indiana. Michael Cahill, President of Gibson, is the Chair.

Proven Success

Junior Achievement is one of a few nonprofits to use independent, third-party evaluators to gauge the impact of its programs. Since 1993, independent evaluators have conducted studies on Junior Achievement's effectiveness. Findings prove that Junior Achievement has a positive impact in a number of critical areas. We invite you to read the Programs Evaluation Results.

Program Reach

Nationally, Junior Achievement reaches more than 4.8 million students per year in 209,651classrooms and after-school locations. JA programs are taught by volunteers in inner cities, suburbs, and rural areas throughout the United States, by 106 Area Offices in all 50 states. JA of Northern Indiana reaches approximately 142,207 students per year.

A Brief History

Junior Achievement was founded in 1919 by Theodore Vail, president of American Telephone & Telegraph; Horace Moses, president of Strathmore Paper Co.; and Senator Murray Crane of Massachusetts. Its first program, JA Company Program®, was offered to high school students on an after-school basis. In 1975, the organization entered the classroom with the introduction of Project Business for the middle grades. Over the last 39 years, Junior Achievement has expanded its activities and broadened its scope to include in-school and after-school students.

Organization Overview

Junior Achievement USA is headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and provides strategic direction, leadership, and support to 109 JA Areas across the nation. Local volunteer boards of directors comprised of business, education, and civic leaders set the policy and direction for each local office. JA of Northern Indiana was founded in 1952.


Junior Achievement's 237,680 classroom volunteers come from all walks of life, including business people, college students, parents, and retirees. These dedicated individuals are the backbone of our organization.
  • "Junior Achievement has given me a sense of what adults go through with budget issues."

    -Junior Achievement Student
  • "Junior Achievement reinforced concepts for me to remember later in life."

    -Junior Achievement Student
  • "I thought the experience was amazing. The presentation was unlike anything I've seen."

    -Junior Achievement Student
  • "I liked how the Junior Achievement volunteer explained his job to us."

    -Junior Achievement Student

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