Partners in Duluth


  Cherie Sawinski
  Cherie Sawinski
  Office of International Programs
  University of Wisconsin, Superior
  Duluth - Petrozavodsk Open World

Cherie Sawinski serves in a volunteer capacity as Project Coordinator for the Duluth-Petrozavodsk Peer to Peer Program. She is currently co-chair of the Petrozavodsk Committee, and past Board Member, Duluth Sister Cities International, and has coordinated Open World Programs for several Russian programs from 2007 through 2014 as well as many other large volunteer programs over a 30 year period. Cherie enjoyed two visits to Petrozavodsk and has hosted many Russian visitors. As a parent of two children with special needs, research in this area was a focus during her initial visit.

Cherie holds a Master's of Education degree in Teaching and Learning. Her undergraduate studies were in sociology with a social work emphasis and Spanish. As Interim Director of the Office of International Programs at the University of Wisconsin-Superior, she supervises the work of staff involved in international student admissions, advising and student services, and works with faculty to develop programs abroad.

Intercultural learning has been her passion since she was a young child. This interest was reinforced by experiences in both the Girl Scout and Boy Scout organizations and a 20 year volunteer career with AFS Intercultural Programs. In the latter capacity she and her family hosted students from many countries. Other interests revolve around her children, several of whom were adopted from Latin America, and grandchildren who she affirms are her bonus for growing older. Gardening, quilting, needlework and reading occupy her few spare moments. She has enjoyed travel to many beautiful places in the world including visits to exchange children in Costa Rica, Norway, Russia and Turkey. Next on her bucket list will be genealogical explorations in Ireland, Denmark and France.

Cherie hopes that through sharing their best practices, professionals and students from both Duluth and Petrozavodsk will be able to significantly decrease child abuse and gender-based violence. Along with all members of the Petrozavodsk Committee, she also hopes this project will continue the efforts of citizens in both cities to build goodwill between the United States and Russia.