First, this project wouldn’t have been possible without the trust, willingness, and passion of the participants from The Unchosen Ones project and their families.
Much love and thanks to Krista, my wife and bestie, who has supported my work from the beginning. I can’t imagine doing any of this without her and look forward to our future adventures together with our children.
My appreciation and love goes to my parents, Rob and Marnie Kern, my brother, Sean, and my in-laws, Roger and Carole Olsen, and Trish Wheaton, for their encouragement and support of my artistic career. You have inspired me to grow deep roots in the Midwest and given me a great appreciation and pride in Minnesota.
Many thanks to the opportunities and friendships afforded to me at Photolucida and Review Santa Fe portfolio reviews including Paula Tongarelli, Lisa Volpe, Corey Keller, Sarah Leen, Alexa Becker, and my many friends and artists I have learned from including Stuart Klipper, Kathleen Richert, Wayne and Jane Gudmundson, Karen Aakre, Louise Harris, Kyle Olmon, Keith Taylor, Aline Smithson, Kelly Thompson, and Giovanni Savino.
I’m grateful to David Braun, Philip Brookman, David Bram, Jason Restemayer, and Sally Miskavige and my “technical family” including The Photo Touch, Dave Gallagher, Jim Ross, Jeff Steaffens, Felix Kunze, Sarah Oliphant, and production assistants Anders Olsen and Penn Barnes.
Many thanks to Debra Klomp Ching and Darren Ching of Klomching Gallery, Ralph and Peggy Burnet, and the staff at Burnet Fine Art & Advisory including Jennifer Phelps and Alex Poepping.
Thank you to Alison Nordström, Joe Scapanski, and Tracy Scapanksi-Schuman for their insightful contributions to this book and to the Minnesota State Arts Board for their support of this project through the Artist Initiative Grant in 2016 and 2018.
Mary Virginia Swanson, you have been a beacon of wisdom, enthusiasm, and encouragement.
And finally, to my dear friends Matt Steaffens and Scott Stebner whose laughs and talents have shaped this project from the very beginning. We’ll never forget, “If you ain’t first, you’re last.”