Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation Elects New Members

The Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation’s voting members recently elected new board and voting members.

The foundation’s board members serve five-year terms and voting members three-year terms. Foundation committees are comprised of community volunteers.

Gerald Hall and Monica White were re-elected to the board of directors. New board members are Helen Baran, Kathy Kaus, Ryan Mourer and Susan L. Wells.

Baran is the owner and operator of Baran Vineyards, a 180-acre grape farm in Westfield. Her community involvement includes Westfield Memorial Hospital, Westfield-Mayville Rotary Club and the new Grape Discovery Center. Past associations include the state Rural Health Council and the Chautauqua County Health Network. Baran served three terms as a voting member.

Kaus is vice president and senior retail loan officer of Cattaraugus County Bank. Her involvement in the community includes board memberships with the United Way of Northern Chautauqua County and Chautauqua Home Rehabilitation and Improvement Corporation. She is a past president of the Dunkirk Rotary Club. Kaus has served on the Grants Committee since 2005. She lives in Silver Creek.

Mourer is a real estate developer whose business focuses on rehabilitating condemned and less than desirable properties in the community. Mourer also serves as code enforcement officer for the town of Dunkirk and the village of Brocton. He and his wife Jaime make their home in Fredonia with sons Riley and Shane.

Susan L. Wells is a graduate of Fredonia High School and holds both an MBA and a JD. She had lived and worked outside her hometown in big and mid-sized cities before returning to the area. Her family was a part of the initial effort that formed the foundation in 1986. She previously served on the board of directors from 1995 to 1999. She resides in Dunkirk.

Current voting members Elizabeth Cardona, Jill Casey, Jody Briggs-Garcia, Joshua Liddell, David Ortolano, Frank Pagano, James O. Rawcliffe, Margaret Tiffany, Ronald Sellers, Dan Siracuse and Elizabeth Tytka were re-elected for another term. Newly elected voting members include Andrew Brautigam, Michael Puglisi, David Dengler, Aaron Resnick, Patricia DiPalma, Rachel Foley and Jared Johnson.

The Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation is one of nearly 700 community foundations in the United States. Founded in 1986, it is dedicated to improving the community through the promotion of local philanthropy, strategic grantmaking and community leadership. For more information, visit