Board of Directors & Staff

Meet the highly-skilled board members and staff who work tirelessly to market and promote Indiana Dunes and its communities to visitors, both local and from afar.

Board of Directors

Mitch Peters, President

Mitch joined the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors in 2010 and was appointed by the Porter County Council. Mitch graduated from Valparaiso University with degrees in elementary education and law. He has been an attorney since 1984. Mitch is also a veteran of the United States Navy. He is involved in numerous organizations, including the Respite House, a halfway house for men seeking recovery from addiction and alcohol.

Don Ensign, Vice President

Don was appointed to the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors in 2022 and represents Hebron and Kouts. Don has worked in the mining and metals industry as a plant manager, production supervisor, and now consultant. He has served on multiple boards, including the Porter County Redevelopment Commission, Hebron Redevelopment Commission, Hebron Park Board, and Veterans Memorial Commission. Don was a Hebron Town Councilman for sixteen years, including nine years serving as President. In 2020, Don received the Sagamore of the Wabash award from the Governor of Indiana, the state’s highest civil service award. He lives in Hebron with his wife, Terri, and has two children.

Richard Riley, Treasurer

Richard joined the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors in 2012 and was appointed by Porter County Commissioner John Evans. Riley is an attorney specializing in real estate zoning for telecommunications structures, and he and his wife, Ann, are also owners of Riley’s Railhouse Bed & Breakfast in Chesterton. Riley has two children, Rebecca and Christopher, and two stepchildren, Angela and Lauren.

Barb Lusco, Secretary

Barb joined the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors in 2015 and was appointed by Portage Mayor James Snyder. She studied philosophy at Prairie State College in Chicago Heights, IL, and Indiana University Northwest in Gary. She is the director of the Portage Public Marina. She is active as a volunteer with the Portage American Legion Post #260 and has a son and two grandchildren. Barb has 20 years of boating experience on Lake Michigan and is on the board of the Lake Michigan Yachting Association.

David Bolla

David was appointed to the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors by the Porter County Commissioners in 2022. David is the Quality manager for Sherwin Williams and has over 30 years of experience working with suppliers and customers, cost optimization, new product launches, and performance management. David has traveled extensively throughout North America and Japan. He and his wife, Amy, raised four children in Porter County.

Catherine Brown

Catherine Brown was appointed in 2016 to the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors. Catherine, a Valparaiso resident, was appointed by Porter County Commissioner Laura Blaney. She has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with a minor in Spanish from Indiana University. Catherine, who has experience as a teacher, is now one of the owners and operators of Valpo Velvet Ice Cream in Valparaiso.

Kay Evans

Kay was appointed in 2023 to the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors. Kay is a Porter resident and is passionate about preserving, protecting, and promoting the Indiana Dunes ecosystem, nature, and wildlife. Her 45+ year professional career was devoted to improving the well-being of the people and communities of St. Joseph and Elkhart Counties. With education and training in policy, planning, and administration, she led Not-for-Profit organizations, their board of directors, and committees. 

Matthew Soliday

Matthew was appointed by the Porter County Commissioners. Soliday is a staff attorney at the nonprofit Federal Community Defenders in Hammond, Indiana, and he is a graduate of Valparaiso High School, Indiana University, and Valparaiso University School of Law, where he served as an adjunct professor. He was also the co-founder of the Valpo Triathlon, and he continues to enjoy outdoor sports. Prior to working for the Federal Community Defenders, Soliday had a private law practice in Valparaiso and served as a Porter County deputy prosecuting attorney. He and his wife live in Chesterton.

Scott Tuft

Scott joined the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors in 2012 and was appointed by Valparaiso Mayor Jon Costas. Tuft is the director of sales and marketing for Accucraft Imaging in Hammond and is the account executive for Elegan Customwear in Valparaiso. He is an avid fisherman and has a passion for spreading the word about the great things Porter County has to offer. Scott's son, Nathan, is working on his doctorate of Physical Therapy at the University of Kentucky. Tuft lives in Valparaiso.

Karen Webster

Karen, who previously served on the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors, returned to the board in 2015 and was appointed by Portage Mayor James Snyder. She studied business finance, accounting, and elementary education at Franklin College in Franklin, IN, and Purdue University Calumet in Hammond. She was the manager of Days Inn in Portage from 1994 to 2006 and again starting in 2014. From 2007 to 2013, she worked for Super 8 in Delavan, WI. Karen has two sons and previously coached youth sports in Portage and, as part of her managing duties at Days Inn, worked with the Elvis FANtasy Fest in Portage to accommodate VIPs and the Wizard of Oz Festival in Chesterton to accommodate the visiting munchkins.

Lisa Wodrich

Lisa Wodrich began serving in 2015, having been appointed by the towns of Chesterton, Porter, and Burns Harbor. Lisa attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Indiana University. She and her husband, David, are owners of Third Coast Spice Café and Lemon Tree Mediterranean Grill, both in Chesterton. She has worked in the restaurant industry for more than 30 years throughout Indiana, Southwest Michigan, and Chicago. During that time, she spent 12 years as an outside sales representative for a national specialty food distributor and importer based in Maryland. She founded and managed the popular Chesterton’s European Market in downtown Chesterton. She sits on the Family Advisory Board for Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago and acts as resource development manager for the For the Love of Chocolate Foundation, an organization that provides scholarships for culinary students specializing in the pastry arts. Lisa resides in Porter with her husband and their two children, Ethan and Abby.

David Hollenbeck, Attorney

David has been serving as the attorney for the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors since the creation of the organization in 1986. David, a Valparaiso resident, is a partner in the law firm of Blachly, Tabor, Bozik & Hartman. In addition to serving the Indiana Dunes Tourism Board of Directors, he is also the attorney for the Porter County Board of Health and many other government entities. He serves on the Porter County Community Foundation finance committee. David, who earned his undergraduate and law degrees from Valparaiso University, teaches classes at the Valparaiso University School of Law and is an NCAA clock operator and scorer for the Valparaiso University men’s basketball team.

Indiana Dunes Tourism Staff

Volunteer Staff

Indiana Dunes Tourism relies on volunteers to assist with special projects. Volunteers also greet visitors at the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center and fulfill requests for travel information from potential visitors across the U.S.

Dunes Ambassador Staff

The Dunes Ambassador Staff are responsible for opening and closing the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center, greeting visitors, assisting with travel information, maintaining accurate visitation records, inputting data into the database, fulfilling travel information requests, and assisting with special projects. The Dunes Ambassador Staff members are the face of Indiana Dunes Tourism at the visitor center and are a primary resource for what visitors are looking for when they visit the Indiana Dunes area. 

The Indiana Dunes Visitor Center is open 362 days a year and is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Labor Day through Memorial Day and is open daily 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day. Both the National Park Service and Indiana Dunes Tourism are required to provide staffing during our open hours. 

Julie Brown, Partnership Coordinator

The Partnership Coordinator is responsible for all of Indiana Dunes Tourism’s partnership sales and gathers festival, event, and coupon information for both the website and print pieces. The Partnership Coordinator also maintains and updates the database for use in mailings, marketing, and website purposes, and is the primary contact for groups looking to visit the Indiana Dunes area.

Julie previously operated a licensed home daycare business and worked for Guideposts for Kids/Teens magazines, Chesterton/Duneland Chamber of Commerce, St. Anthony Health System, Pathway Family Center, and KPM Group. She is active in Boy Scouts of America, Indiana Addictions Coalition, National Autism Association, PFLAG, St. Patrick’s Church, and the Duneland community.

Christine Livingston, CEO/President (Interim)

Christine is responsible for the development and implementation of marketing strategies to meet Indiana Dunes Tourism’s goals and objectives. This includes managing product development and advertising initiatives, the website and database, photo inventory, and major campaigns designed to draw visitors into Porter County communities. The director also assists in managing staff and leads Indiana Dunes Tourism in the President's absence.

Christine has a bachelor’s degree in organizational communication from Indiana University Northwest. Previously, she worked for several nonprofit organizations as a program manager and has worked on various outreach and marketing initiatives. She served as an advisory member of Purdue’s Indiana Water Research Center and served on committees for various community projects, such as the Porter County Corridor Plan Committee, the Duneland School Improvement Committee, on the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Coastal Program, the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, and the Porter County Parks Master Planning Committee. She currently serves on the advisory boards of the Northwest Indiana Paddling Association and the Shirley Heinze Land Trust.

Jennifer Matthys, Revenue and Facilities Director

As the Revenue and Facilities Director, Jennifer is responsible for maintaining the Indiana Dunes Tourism (IDT) building, external contracting, and overseeing daily operations. Jennifer also provides Dunes Ambassador team development, volunteer coordination, retail operations, and inventory management. The Revenue and Facilities Director manages IDT’s Pedal Power bike rental business and seasonal staff. The director also evaluates and executes emergency preparedness for the Indiana Dunes Tourism staff. 

Jennifer is native to Porter County and has over seven years of experience in human resources and six years in operations management at a facility that creates inclusive opportunities for people of all abilities. She enjoys spending time with her tightly-knit family, reading, and working on home improvement projects.  

Dustin Ritchea, Production Director

The Production Director coordinates the production, post-production, delivery, marketing, and design of promotional materials, publications, and video and graphic design projects. The director manages partnership events and outreach programs, such as R.O.S.E., media events, and chamber functions. They also work alongside the marketing team to update and implement the Indiana Dunes Communications Plan, serving as IDT’s in-person representative for all media, radio, step-on guides, and video interviews. The director works closely with the Communications Director on strategic planning and media requests, and they are the communications lead for crisis management.

Dustin has a master’s degree in telecommunications (production and design) from Indiana University and a bachelor’s degree in English and theater arts from Augsburg University. He currently serves as a member of the Indiana Arts Commission and is a graduate of the Valparaiso Chamber Leadership Academy. A Porter native, Dustin is a trained actor, producer, photo/videographer, and multimedia specialist. In his spare time, he writes, plays piano, and leads a Dungeons and Dragons campaign.

Michelle Senderhauf, Communications Director

As Communications Director, Michelle oversees the organization’s social media and digital campaign strategy, handles written communications, and serves as the liaison to the media. She co-manages several print and digital projects with the Production Director. She also writes the blog for the Indiana Dunes website, assists with grant administration, and coordinates regional social media projects.

Michelle earned a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University. She worked as a freelance writer, artist, and social media manager in the entertainment industry before joining the Indiana Dunes Tourism team. Some of her high-profile clients included Ford Motor Company, the United States Military, AARP, General Electric, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. In 2022, Michelle won a Peabody Legacy Award for her work on Word Without Oil. She is an Indiana Master Naturalist, volunteers at Chellberg Farm in the Indiana Dunes National Park, and is on the Coffee Creek Watershed Conservancy Board. Michelle also enjoys walking her dog in the dunes, kayaking, and playing board and video games with her family and friends.




The doors to Indiana Dunes Tourism opened on January 2, 1986. Originally operating under the name…


Indiana Dunes Tourism’s mission is to bring visitors to Indiana Dunes Country and extend their…