EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S MESSAGE
New Beginnings! By Linden Wicklund, AASP-MN Executive Director
I am delighted to be the incoming Executive Director of the Alliance. Thank you to everyone who has welcomed me into the position with optimism for the future and a willingness to share knowledge. Particular thanks to Judell for all of her years of building this organization to have strong programming and an inclusive professional culture. To those of you who I have not yet met, I look forward to working on your behalf and learning what impacts your business most. My career thus far has taken me through several different industries that I have served through non-profit membership-based organizations. First ceramics and the arts, then industrial textiles and now automotive repair shops. At each organization, my role has provided me with the privilege of working with amazing volunteer leaders who bring the voice of industry into the organization to help guide it forward. My first passion in life is making and fixing things, so working with individuals who care deeply about their industries and the craft or quality of what they are putting out into the world is very fulfilling.
4 | January 2022
For the past decade, I have been at the Industrial Fabrics Association International. Most recently, I was a member of the senior leadership team and oversaw conference and event management, membership programing and retention, division oversight, lobbying and market research. This work was rewarding and dynamic, taking me into shops and factories around the country and into the halls of the White House. However, my husband, three little kids, pets and perennial garden were all calling for me to focus my energy in the state of Minnesota. I am looking forward to meeting with members and non-members around the state to learn firsthand about the issues most impacting shops. In these early days on the job, I am meeting with the Board, committees and team members to learn how the work of the Alliance has helped our members and the broader community of independent auto repair shops over the years and the vision for the future. I welcome any outreach, so please feel free to contact me at any point to share your perspective. Happy New Year!