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Northwest Minnesota Foundation ~ Developing Community Assets ~ Serving 12 Counties Spring 2011 ~ Number 53

Competition Finalists Announced Nine people have been named as IDEA Competition finalists in this year’s contest for breakthrough business ideas. The finalists and their hometowns are: Kiki Anderson, Thief River Falls; Marilyn Graff, McIntosh; Johnnie Green, Thief River Falls; Fred Hartmann, Thief River Falls; Christopher Hoffman, Bemidji; David and Andrea Holmes, Fosston; Barrett Jesness, Bagley; Jason LaValley, Bemidji; and Jeff Sullivan, Bemidji.

Judging Round 2 of the IDEA competition are: (clockwise) Jaimee Meyer, SBDC; Amy Tobkin, NMF; Ryan Zemek, HRDC; Karen White, BSU; Doug Safar, Bremer Bank; Michelle Landsverk, IDEA project manager; Michelle Christofferson, UMC

The main goal of IDEA (which stands for Ingenuity Drives Entrepreneur Acceleration) is to assist promising local entrepreneurs in the commercialization of innovative products, processes and deliveries by connecting them to the best resources available, along with access to the capital it takes to launch a successful venture. The field of competitors started at 23 and was then narrowed to 17, who were asked to provide more detailed business plans. The nine finalists were selected from this group. Up to five winners will each receive $10,000 to advance their breakthrough ideas. The finalists will make comprehensive presentations to a panel of judges on May 10th. The winners of the competition will be announced on May 17th at the IDEA Competition Awards Banquet, to be held from 5:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. in the Bede Ballroom on the University of Minnesota Crookston campus. (Continued on page 3)

Established April 17, 1986 The early 1980’s were changing times for Minnesotans. A national recession severely impacted mining, manufacturing and agriculture throughout the state. Declines in the farming and mining economies were stripping rural communities of people, jobs and hope. The roots of the Northwest Minnesota Foundation track back to early 1984, when The McKnight Foundation announced that it was exploring a major new initiative to help rural Minnesota by stimulating local giving and encouraging local responsibility for the long-term welfare of each region. This led to a discussion about the future with representatives of McKnight and 35 Northwest Minnesota leaders from a 15-county area who met in Crookston in November of 1984. The Northwest Minnesota Task Force on Rural Issues incorporated as a 501(c)3 in April 1986 in order to prepare for receipt of a $2.1 million dollar award from McKnight and implement strategies developed in a year-long process. This was the start of what is now the Northwest Minnesota Foundation. (Continued next page)

The Northwest Minnesota Foundation invests resources, creates opportunities and promotes philanthropy to make the region a better place to live and work.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Eric Bergeson Chair Fertile Mark Hewitt Vice-Chair Park Rapids Kim Wilson Secretary Fosston Gary Purath Treasurer Red Lake Falls Faye Auchenpaugh Thief River Falls Robert Hager Greenbush Jody Horntvedt Baudette Roger Malm Hallock Jon Quistgaard Bemidji Judy Roy Redby Laurie Wilson Crookston


Message from the President

IMPACT 20/20 is a significant partnership program that Northwest Minnesota Foundation helped convene in the fall of 2008. It is an influential group of Northwest Minnesota leaders representing diverse interests and working together for the region’s economic success. The group of leaders has identified three initiatives that require collective action to successfully lay the foundation for future economic prosperity in Northwest Minnesota. Task forces have been organized to address the region’s workforce, education and broadband service. Recently, community broadband forums were held in three Northwest Minnesota communities. Residents were asked to consider scenarios: monitoring and controlling the energy usage of their home via the internet while being away on a trip; taking a virtual tour of the Louvre as part of an online art history class; rural health care providers live-streaming 3-D medical imaging over the web and consulting with specialists from around the world. NMF Anniversary

Nancy Vyskocil

These three communities – Crookston, Mahnomen and Park Rapids – are located in counties experiencing the greatest disparity in service. In fact, almost 2,300 households in their three counties have no available Broadband connection (with the exception of various wireless technologies, which are cost-prohibitive for many individuals).

ferences in opinion occur when the discussion turns to the funding of USF and how it will be used to provide maximum benefit to the country. (USF is supported by consumers and communications companies, not funded by government.) Currently, USF does not underwrite the cost of high-speed broadband – it is only used to underwrite the cost of telephone service. The Federal Communication Commission’s Notice of Proposed Rule Making includes changes relating to USF use for broadband access.

People from multiple sectors – education, healthcare, government, business, industry, nonprofit, internet service providers, and the general public – attended the forums and brainstormed In the years since the enactment of the about what might be possible if higher Telecommunications Act of 1996, the speeds of Broadband were available. entire communications concept has Focus areas that emerged as being of evolved. The network that was built greatest importance were education, and successfully used for many years for medicine, working from home, and voice communicabusiness opportuTask forces have been organized tions is not always nities.  Of additional importance to address the region’s workforce, adequate for the were the topics of education and broadband service. current broadband needs of our socisocial networking, ety. The industry recognizes this. The gaming and entertainment, financial regulators recognize this. Indeed, socitransactions, tourism and talent retenety in general recognizes this. There is tion. general consensus that access to broadThe IMPACT 20/20 Taskforce for band is essential in today’s world. Broadband is urging changes to the Stay tuned. Change is coming, but the Universal Service Fund (USF) that devil is always in the details. The IMwould include support for high-speed PACT 20/20 Task Force for Broadband broadband. will make every effort to keep you inIt is safe to say that the current proformed of additional developments and cess is not working and that we need notify you when key legislation is under change in the USF to bring Broadband consideration. Go to www.impact2020. to every American household. The diforg to learn more.

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Time has shown that the early days set the organization on the right course. Today NMF is still charting the way as a convener, bringing together resources, influential groups and individuals, and new partners.

Since 1986 to December 2010 Total Net Assets .......................$46 million Dollars Leveraged......................$81.3 million Total Loans = 451.......................$20.7 million Jobs Created/Retained ...............2,375 Total Grants = 4,228...................$21.5 million

Celebrating 25 Years of Making Northwest Minnesota Greater 2

Northwest Minnesota Foundation


New Board Members We are delighted to welcome two new members to the NMF board of directors. Faye Auchenpaugh is a grant writer, beginning in 1999 with the Northwest Service Cooperative seeking funding for education programs that resulted in $14 million for school districts, communities and organizations. Her recent activity is with the American History Project, serving 90 teachers in the region’s school districts through the US Department of Education.

as an active member of the St. Pauli Lutheran Church and its programs, for which her grandparents were charter members. She said that returning “home” to Northwest Minnesota after living in a variety of places helped her to realize and appreciate the uniqueness of our region. “We take responsibility for ourselves but will drop everything to rally around a friend or neighbor in need,” she said, “and we have an inherent and insatiable curiosity about what is going on around us. This curiosity and willingness to help is what keeps our region so vibrant and it is demonstrated in the support we give to our schools and communities.”

Auchenpaugh returned to her family’s farm in Thief River Falls after living in a variety of locales in the U.S. and St. Thomas, and traveling extensively in Europe and the Caribbean. She is very active in her community, serving on the board of the Pennington County Historical Society, as the clerk for Smiley Township, among other projects, and

IDEA Competition

Dr. Jon Quistgaard was named President Emeritus in 2010 by

the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees following his retirement in July after three decades in higher education, most recently as president of Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College. Quistgaard acknowledges that while northwest Minnesota is not without its challenges, there are also many opportunities to continue to build on in transitioning the special “quality of place” that we all aspire to participate in and seek to enjoy. “Northwest Minnesota must work collaboratively and creatively to grow entrepreneurship, expand educational access with timely completion rates while retaining our talent,” Quistgaard said. “We also must advance the technology infrastructure, build stronger communities through shared destinies, and provide our children with convincing reasons to stake their futures here in northwest Minnesota.”

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The 17 winners in the first round of judging were chosen from a wide geographic area. “We received applications from all over the region,” said Michelle Landsverk, project coordinator. “We were extremely pleased with the quality of all the applications that we saw this year. Northwest Minnesota is truly a region of innovators.” Now in its third year, the IDEA competition is a project of Ingenuity Frontier, a collaboration of partners joined by a common purpose — to grow the economy of Northwest Minnesota by outfitting the next generation of homegrown innovators for success in the global marketplace.

IDEA sponsors are Bremer Bank, Crookston and Warren, Northwest Minnesota Foundation, 360o Manufacturing and Applied Engineering Center

Other IDEA judges L-R: Kari Howe, DEED; Diane Morey, NMF; Caryl Turnow, NMF; Kevin Cooper, UMC

of Excellence, University of Minnesota Crookston, Midwest Minnesota Community Development Corporation, and Northwest Regional Small Business Development Center. Partners include Ingenuity Frontier, Bemidji State University, Agricultural Utilization Research Institute, Enterprise Minnesota, Headwaters Regional Development Commission, Innovate ND, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, and Northland Community and Technical College. IDEA was made possible through a generous grant from the Blandin Foundation. Learn more at www.ideacompetition.org.

Developing Community Assets - Serving 12 Counties

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Early Childhood Initiative News

Marshall County The Marshall County Early Childhood Initiative has received a $20,000 oneyear grant for its early literacy project from the Otto Bremer Foundation. It will help fund Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, literacy training events for parents and professionals, and additional coordination/outreach time for the project. The grant proposal asked for funding to cover three areas: 1. Continuation and expansion of Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library – a program that mails an ageappropriate book each month to the home of children registered, from birth to their fifth birthday. 2. Offering training to parents and early care and education professionals in supporting the development of early literacy for children birth to age five. 3. Providing coordination and outreach for the growth and sustainability of the early literacy project in Marshall County. The community-based group has supported not only early literacy, but also quality child care, inter-agency collaboration for early childhood, family resource fairs and activities.

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Park Rapids Coordinator Dawn Anderson and Park Rapids ECI members have opened a conversation with kindergarten teachers in their area. Their purpose is to learn how to work together as early childhood professionals and school professionals so that all children reach school ready to thrive. The kindergarten teachers highlighted areas where they see gaps in children’s readiness. The ECI will now begin to plan with early care and education providers, parents and others to address those learning and developmental needs. Kindergarten transition planning was listed as part of Park Rapids ECI’s new strategic plan.

Thrive Initiative The Thrive Initiative is pursuing a project called Technology Leap. It is a partnership with Lakeland Public TV and Paul Bunyan Communications. Lakeland has offered program slots twice per day, two days per week

Northwest Minnesota Foundation

for material on child care, child development, parenting topics, health and safety. A Thrive subcommittee is identifying high quality video programs to include. The programs will likely be available on demand through PBTV for use in prenatal education and for new parents at Sanford Clinic and Hospital. The project is still in development. It was initiated due to concerns of various local professionals about the quality of prenatal and postnatal education being offered to parents, as well a need for high quality, easily accessible educational programs for child care providers and parents of young children. Lakeland Public TV covers a large portion of NMF’s region with programming, meaning that the reach of this Thrive project will be widespread.


Business Development Program Business Loans

Four loans totaling $217,500 were recently made from the Revolving Loan Fund: Occupational Development Center, Bemidji To finance a building purchase in a partnership among three local gap financing partners to accommodate expansion of the Center.

Pine to Prairie Angel Fund, LLC, Fosston For equity investment on behalf of Ingenuity Frontier. Northland Kilns, Inc., Bagley For working capital to support the production of new products.

Haugen Hardware and Home, Inc., Red Lake Falls For the purchase and rehabilitation of an existing hardware store.

Microloans

Xtreme DNA, East Grand Forks For purchase of custom snowboard inventory.

Business counseling and loans are available to help entrepreneurs develop small business and self-employment opportunities.

Rejuv’ Salon and Spa, Inc. Expansion loan for re-location

Eight loans were recently made totaling $183,000: North Country Food and Fuel, Inc., Waskish To purchase new gas tank equipment.

Big Bear Sealcoating and Striping, Becida For purchase of an existing business. Avant Garde on Main, Park Rapids For start-up of a women’s and children’s clothing store.

Preservation Place, Bemidji For start-up of a new bookstore. Brons Recycling, Karlstad For purchase of an existing metal salvage, recycling business. Sublime Enterprises, Roseau For start-up of a new fitness business.

Technical Assistance

Ten businesses from Bagley, East Grand Forks, Ada, Park Rapids, St. Vincent, Macintosh, and Bemidji received a total of $15,660 in outside consulting for management and technical assistance.

Workforce Solutions for Employers Developed for entrepreneurs and small businesses in Northwest Minnesota, these workshops will be geared toward entrepreneurs and small growing businesses that are new or unfamiliar with hiring and maintaining a workforce. Workshops will be held in Bemidji and Crookston. Topics common to both sessions: Presented by Pam Harris and the SBDC: • Employee handbook and policy and procedures manual Presented by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry: • Proper and timely payment of wages • Safe workplaces • Benefits provided for injuries • Resources for assuring employers’ compliance in the most efficient and cost effective manner

April 27, 2011 • Bemidji 8:30 am - 2:30 pm - Hampton Inn April 28, 2011 • Crookston 8:30 am - 2:30 pm - Valley Tech Park Fee: $35 • Lunch and materials provided REGISTER ONLINE: WWW.NWMF.ORG For information, contact: Amy Tobkin, amyt@nwmf.org

Developing Community Assets - Serving 12 Counties

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Grants Grants totaling $377,547 were awarded from September 2010 – February 2011 Caring Communities Total: $25,000 Children, Family & Elderly Boys & Girls Club of the Bemidji Area.............$25,000 For Volunteer Partnership Project

Community Planning Total: $91,500 Community Development City of Baudette................................................$10,000 For Baudette and Lake of the Woods Area Trails Plan City of Bemidji..................................................$20,000 For Bemidji Area Parks Plan Update City of Mahnomen..............................................$5,000 For City of Mahnomen Parks and Trails Strategic Plan

Crookston Area Community Fund...................$20,000 For Community Stewardship Program Fertile-Beltrami Community Fund.....................$6,000 For Community Stewardship Program Fisher Area Community Fund.............................$6,000 For Community Stewardship Program Stephen Area Endowment Fund..........................$6,000 For Community Stewardship Program Warren Area Community Fund...........................$6,000 For Community Stewardship Program

Economic & Community Development Red Lake Band of Chippewa.............................$12,500 For Red Lake CEDS

Natural Resources Total: $1,000 New Technologies University of Minnesota......................................$1,000 For CERTS 2011 Conference

Training Total: $1,200 STAR Teams The following schools received a total of $1,200 in grants for follow-up projects: Bemidji, Blackduck, Kelliher, Lake of the Woods, Laporte, Naytahwaush Community Charter, Nevis, Red Lake County Central, Walker-Akeley-Hackensack, Warroad, Waubun Component funds are established with the Northwest Minnesota Foundation for a specific purpose. A donor or group of donors helps to build a permanent endowment from which interest earnings are used to fund projects, programs or activities and/or scholarships that support the mission of the fund. A local fund advisory committee recommends distribution s based on specific purposes and criteria. The NMF board, for purposes of IRS regulation, approves the advisory recommendations for grants, but the component funds are the source of the grant dollars.

Component Fund Total: $114,827 Akeley Area Community Fund

Akeley Regional Community Center..............................$2,000

Backstrom Family Charitable Fund

Warren Area Community Fund.....................................$2,000

Bagley Early Childhood Initiative Fund Bagley Independent School District #162 (2)......................$900 Clearbrook-Gonvick Public Schools..........................$938 Beltrami Humane Society Fund

Beltrami Humane Society................................................$750 Ralph and Ruth Shoemate Fund Beltrami Humane Society.........................................$3,000

Bemidji Area Parks and Trails Fund Bemidji Community Biomes Outdoor Classroom Fund Beltrami Soil and Water Conservation District (2)........$4,100

Bemidji Area Race Relations.............................$25,000 For BARRC/Shared Vision Alliance

Bemidji Lumberjack Foundation Fund First National Bank Bonspiel Fund Bemidji Area Schools District #31..............................$7,277 Security Bank USA Lumberjack Scramble Bemidji Area Schools District #31............................$14,556

Clear Waters Life Center...................................$20,246 For CWLC Gonvick Community Engagement Project

Clearbrook-Gonvick Early Childhood Initiative Fund Clearbrook-Gonvick Public Schools..................................$938

Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc.................$25,000 For Family Voice & Choice Network

Fertile-Beltrami Early Childhood Initiative Fund Fertile-Beltrami Public School..........................................$400

Community Connections Total: $70,246

Fourth & Robbins Fund

Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota.....................................$5,000

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Northwest Minnesota Foundation


HRDC Leadership Fund HRDC Successful Communities Challenge Fund City of Baudette......................................................$5,000 City of Mahnomen..................................................$3,000 Kittson Memorial Healthcare Center Foundation Fund Kittson Memorial Healthcare Center..............................$3,245 Lake of the Woods Early Childhood Initiative Fund

Lake of the Woods School District....................................$500

LifeCare Health Care Fund

LifeCare Public Health (2)............................................$1,000 Warroad Independent School District #690.....................$1,000 Warroad Senior Living Center.......................................$1,000 LifeCare Hospice Fund LifeCare Hospice.....................................................$4,000

Marshall County Early Childhood Initiative Fund

Stephen/Argyle School.................................................$5,000

Norman County East Early Childhood Initiative Fund Norman County East School District #2215 (2)..................$750 Ole and Ruth Tweet Family Fund City of Thief River Falls............................................$3,000 Thief River Falls Education Foundation.........................$651 Park Rapids Area Community Fund Positively Park Rapids Fund City of Park Rapids..................................................$6,500 Roseau Area Community Fund Roseau Parks & Recreation Fund City of Roseau...................................................$21,467 Ruth Edevold Endowment for Excellence Ruth Edevold Awards for Excellence (2)......................$2,000 St Mary’s Mission School Fund St. Mary’s Mission School.............................................$7,651 Tonia Johannsen Memorial Fund Laporte School District #306........................................$1,045 Warren Senior Center Endowment Fund Warren Senior Center..................................................$1,861 Warroad Area Community Fund Warroad Senior Living Center Fund Warroad Senior Living Center...................................$1,300 Warroad Women of Today Community Project Fund University of Minnesota...........................................$3,000

Bemidji Lumberjack Foundation Fund Buck Robbins Scholarship Fund...................................$150 Bun & Alvera Fortier Scholarship Fund.........................$500 Des Sagedahl Scholarship Fund....................................$500 General Scholarship Fund (10)..................................$6,500 Heidi Bitzer McClure Memorial Scholarship ...............$1,000 K.E. “Red” Wilson Athletic Fund (2)..........................$1,000 Pat Campbell String Fund (2).......................................$600 George Pelawa-Calgary Flames Education Fund...........$1,000 John F. Breen Scholarship Fund (6)............................$4,500 Ray F. Breen Scholarship (8)......................................$6,000 Blackduck Area Community Fund Academic and Character Scholarship Fund.....................$250 Clearbrook-Gonvick Education Fund Mary Jo Klinger Scholarship Fund................................$500 Olga Peterson Scholarship Fund................................$1,500 East Polk County Fair Scholarship Fund (2)...........$1,500 Fosston Area Community Fund McNelly Family Vocational Scholarship Fund..............$1,000 Fosston Education Foundation Fund..........................$1,500 Jim Miller Memorial Math Scholarship Fund..................$400 Terry Stout Memorial Scholarship Fund......................$1,000 Vikan Scholarship Fund..............................................$200 Julie Holmquist Memorial Scholarship Fund............$250 Keith and Ellen Kapphahn Family Scholarship Fund (3)..................................................$750 Laporte Education Endowment and Project Fund (3)...............................................$1,500 Laporte-Benedict VFW Scholarship Fund (2).................$500 Laural Capistran Murphy Scholarship Fund.............$500 Leonard J. Kucera Memorial Scholarship Fund (2)...$400 Luther Younggren Memorial Scholarship Fund (2)...............................................$2,700 Mahnomen Education Endowment and Project Fund (8)...............................................$3,450 Gen.Ike & Maj Bruce Isaacson Scholarship Fund (2).......$500 Leslie Hanson Scholarship Fund...................................$250 Major Robert Olson Fund.......................................$1,000 Merle and Mildred Rundell Education Fund.............$500 Mike Staples Memorial Scholarship Fund..............$1,000

Scholarship Fund Total: $73,775

Northwest Minnesota Women’s Fund

Bagley Education Endowment and Project Fund Bagley General Scholarship Fund (6)..........................$4,000

Northwest Minnesota Women’s Scholarship Fund...........$500 U of M Crookston Women’s Scholarship Fund...............$500

Bemidji Area Community Fund Bemidji Jaycees Education and Scholarship Fund (2)....$1,000 Earle and Mariann Dickinson Family Education Fund.........................................................$500

Red Lake Falls Education Endowment and Project Fund Kris Fontaine Memorial Scholarship Fund (4)..............$2,000 Kyle A. Myhre Memorial Fund (3).............................$1,500 Lester Norris Dale, MD Scholarship Fund......................$250

Developing Community Assets - Serving 12 Counties

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NONPROFIT ORG. U.S. Postage PAID Bemidji, MN 56601 Permit No. 36

4225 Technology Drive NW Bemidji, MN 56601

Contact us: 218-759-2057 • 800-659-7859 • info@nwmf.org

Upcoming Events Business Development April 26

Workforce Solutions for Business Owners

Bemidji, Hampton Inn

April 27

Workforce Solutions for Business Owners

Crookston, Valley Tech. Park

May 17

IDEA Awards Banquet

Crookston, UMC Bede Ballroom

Nonprofit Management Training May 13

Empowering Communication II

Bemidji, Sanford Center

May 18

Getting the Most from Your Board: Leadership

Bemidji, Sanford Center

May 20

Empowering Communication II

Warroad, St. Mary’s

LeaderImpact Participants commit to both sessions: October 12 – 14, 2011

1st Session

Hiawatha Beach Resort

January 25 – 27, 2012

2nd Session

Hiawatha Beach Resort

Watch for information about upcoming 25th Anniversary Celebration activities and the 2012 NMF Education Summit

Visit our Website

www.nwmf.org

Resource Spring 2011  

Spring Resource Newsletter 2011

Resource Spring 2011  

Spring Resource Newsletter 2011