Teresa Faust lived in Nisswa for just 11 years, but the 2010 Nisswa Citizen of the Year will be remembered for her tireless work for the city and many area organizations.
That includes starting Team Teal of the North, an ovarian cancer support group that was the first such support group north of the Twin Cities.
Faust died Wednesday, Nov. 13, at her home. Her funeral will be at 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, at Lutheran Church of the Cross in Nisswa.
Jo Quam of Lake Shore met Faust 10 years ago at a Nisswa Women of Today style show in Breezy Point. Faust didn’t know anyone and sat in an empty seat at Quam’s table.
“She sat next to me and we’d been friends ever since,” Quam said, noting Faust and her husband, Dave, vacationed with Quam and her family.
“When I think of Teresa, I think of love. She was there to help anybody or try to,” Quam said. “If she knew somebody needed something, she was already there.”
She started many activities in Nisswa, including the reading of “The Polar Express” in the caboose during the City of Lights Festival.
“She asked me to take that over and gave me everything,” Quam said. “Even in the end she wanted things to keep going.”
Faust was past president and in charge of publicity for the Nisswa Women’s Club. Describing Faust, current club president Diane Scearcy called her giving, kind and brave.
“She was a leader. So much of what the club is doing now is a tribute to her,” Scearcy said. “She was instrumental in activities that promoted us and we gained visibility.
“She was a kind, wonderful person,” she said.
Faust was vice chair of the Nisswa Planning Commission, resigning last month.
“I had the pleasure of working with Teresa as the Chamber of Commerce director and more recently as the vice chair of the Planning Commission,” said City Planner Loren Wickham. “She had contributed much to the city over the years and will be greatly missed.”
Kathleen Gavin, executive director of the Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance (MOCA), said in an email: “The entire MOCA board mourns the loss of Teresa, an incredible woman with a drive to help others impacted by ovarian cancer.
“Teresa served as a voice for women with the disease in the Brainerd lakes area, and because of her outreach and work, local women now have increased support, information and resources about ovarian cancer. She will be greatly missed. MOCA is driven to continue on our mission in the memory of Teresa and all the women we’ve lost to this disease.”
Faust had been a supporter of MOCA since 2006, when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She was appointed to the MOCA board in May 2012.
Faust served as executive director of the Nisswa chamber and on the chamber board of directors. She also served on many chamber committees over the years.
“I’ve never had a friend like her. I don’t think a person could have a better friend than what Teresa was. She was a very, very special woman,” Quam said.