971 Brittany Bend
Lake in the Hills, IL 60156
Current Term Ends: Dec. 2020
McHenry County Resident Since 1995
Dr. Paula Yensen was first elected to the Lake in the Hills Village Board in 2001, and served two terms before being elected to the McHenry County Board in 2008 and 2012. She returned as Trustee in Lake in the Hills in 2015. She has also served as Chair of the McHenry County Stormwater Commission, Chair of McHenry County's Management Services Committee and Vice-Chair of the McHenry County Transportation Committee. She was elected to the McHenry County Board again in 2016.
In 1994 Dr. Yensen earned a Ph.D. in Education, with minors in Urban Affairs Programs and Family and Child Science from Michigan State University. Her graduate studies included in-depth research in affordable housing, employment issues, non-traditional learning, and urban planning. Her Ph.D. dissertation was focused on adult learning behavior at a shelter for battered women in Hamilton, Ohio.
While in Michigan, she served on the Ingham County Women's Commission and was a founder of the Lansing Fair Housing Board. Dr. Yensen also founded the Economic Justice task Force, and offered consumer advocacy testimony before the Michigan State Legislature. She served on the women's commission responsible for developing the rape evidence protocol endorsed by the Michigan State Police and now used nationally in hospital emergency rooms. In 2013, Dr. Yensen received the Thomas Jefferson Lifetime Achievement award for her many years of community service.
Dr. Yensen served as Executive Director of United Way of Central Kane County and is adjunct faculty member at Harper College, where she teaches grant writing, board development, women and leadership, and fundraising.
Currently, she is Vice President of the Board of Directors of Fox Valley Philanthropy Network and as a national Operations Volunteer for Girl Scouts U.S.A. and Lake in the Hills Rotary. She is a past Board Member for the Grafton Food Pantry and the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County. Dr. Yensen is married to Michael Bissett and has two children, Jamie and Jason.