Advantage Magazine | April 2022

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ROCH ESTER A Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce Publication

April 2022

Rochester Athletic club Approaching 30 years in rochester!





2022 ANNUAL CELEBRATION RECAP Recap of the 2022 Annual Celebration

LOCAL GOVERNMENT CONNECT Here from local leaders at Local Government Connect

Supporting your goals hopes and dreams. Welcome, Raymond L. Hansen to the Merchants Bank Trust Department Take advantage of my knowledge, expertise, experience and the Merchants’ community banking approach. Based on your needs, our Trust team can assist with: • Trusts and Estates: serving families in a fiduciary capacity to remove familial burdens, ensure family harmony, remove conflicts of interest, and create efficiencies. •

Wealth Management: helping clients build, manage and transfer wealth through professional investment portfolio management.

Retirement Plans: helping employers attract and retain talented employees through full service and premier retirement benefit plans.

True to our community banking philosophy, we pride ourselves on delivering exceptional customer experiences and will meet locally in a manner that is convenient for you. Contact me to schedule an apointment.

Let’s work together.

Raymond L. Hansen, J.D. Trust Officer (507) 535-1538 3586 55th Street NW, Rochester

Investments are: Not FDIC Insured - Not Bank Products - May Lose Value


Feature Rochester Athletic Club: Approaching 30 Years in Rochester!


Meet the Member


Chamber News


Community News



NH Boutique

Advertising Information: Brent Ackerman

April 2022

What’s Inside

Advantage Information and Questions: Katie Becker

TSP has vast experience planning and designing facilities for organizations dedicated to protecting lives and property. The TSP team understands the requirements of modern public safety buildings, from training and staff living spaces to office areas and vehicle storage and maintenance garages.

STAFF Chamber President Ryan Parsons 507-288-1122

Membership Brent Ackerman Development Director 507-424-5666

Public Affairs & Leadership Jonathon Krull Development Director Membership Director Tim Shea


Events & Program Ally Sheehan Director 507-424-5687

Membership Director Kali Aldrich


Communications Director Katie Becker 507-424-5661

Administrative Assistant Cherie Thurlow 507-288-1122

Director of Operations Cheryl Krage 507-424-5699

2021-2022 CHAMBER BOARD OFFICERS Chair of the Board Christy Blade

Treasurer James Kelly

Rochester Post Bulletin, LLC

Individual Member

Vice Chair John Eckerman

Secretary Emily Benner

RSP Architects

Boston Scientific

2021-2022 CHAMBER BOARD MEMBERS Santhi Arunachalam

Xylo Technologies Inc.

Lizzy Haywood

People’s Food Cooperative

Dr. Christine Beech*


Doug Holtan

Mayo Clinic

Chad Behnken

Hamilton Real Estate

Marge Kelley

Gillette Pepsi

Dr. Lori Carrell

University of Minnesota - Rochester

Sarah Miller

White Space, LLC

Teresa Czaplewski

Ranfranz & Vine Funeral Home

Matt Morehead

Carlson Capital Management

Steve Dunn

Taco JED

Omar Nur

Somali American Social Service Assoc.

Scott Eggert*

Broadway Plaza

Sylwia Bujak Oliver

125 Live

Jessica Eidem

IBM Corporation

David Pederson

Dunlap & Seeger, P.A.

Shawn Fagan

Fagan Studios

Jack Priggen

Cardinal of MN, LTD.

Abel Garcia

Remodeling D.L, LLC

Joselyn Raymundo

Rochester Home Infusion

Karen Hanson

Home Instead Senior Care

Sharon Schneller

Olmsted Medical Center

Gwen Stevens

People’s Energy Cooperative

*Denotes at large members of the Executive Committee


MISSION The Chamber promotes business success which supports a thriving community.

Rochester-area businesses are empowered to succeed in a diverse and collaborative climate.

VALUES As a service organization, the Chamber is committed to conducting our work in accordance with the following values:

Collaboration | Diversity |Innovation Integrity | Proactivity Chamber Advantage USPS 446-900 is published monthly by the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce at 220 S Broadway Ste 100 | Rochester, MN 55904 | Phone: 507-288-1122 Periodical Postage paid at Rochester, Minnesota | Annual Subscription: $20 (free to Chamber members) | Christy Blade, Chair of the Board | Editor: Katie Becker Postmaster: Send address changes to: Chamber Advantage, 220 S Broadway Ste 100, Rochester, MN 55904 or email:

Feature F

ROCHESTER ATHLETIC CLUB Approaching 30 Years in Rochester By Maura Keller always strived to be member-experience driven, through modern amenities and customer service. We have been evolving year by year in programming and facilities to continue to be relevant in the market.” As it approaches its 30th anniversary, the club has experienced a wealth of successes. As Brent Frueh, general manager of the RAC explains, the RAC team is most proud of how important the club is to the Rochester and surrounding community.

The Rochester Athletic Club (RAC) strives to be member-experience driven.

The Rochester Athletic Club has been serving the

greater Rochester area community for nearly three decades – providing the ideal health club environment, complete with fitness programs, education opportunities, and community connections for those in and throughout the greater Rochester region. Opened in 1993, the Rochester Athletic Club (RAC) was founded by three local businessmen: Jeff Brown, Rick Hexum and Jack Remick, who discovered a need and brought on club industry veterans to aid in the design, setup and management of the RAC. Today, the RAC is a vibrant health club community offering a wealth of fitness, health, and community education resources for individuals and families throughout the Rochester area. “I joined in 2000, and ownership has changed over the years, and it is now my dad and myself,” says Matt Remick, president of the RAC. “ We have

April 2022

“We hear repeatedly from our members that they do not know how they would survive the Minnesota winters without the RAC,” Frueh says. “One of the most enjoyable times of the year for us is the week between Christmas and New Year’s. It is the time when families bring guests, many of whom are coming back to visit a place that created fond childhood memories.”

Families First

As a multipurpose club, the RAC addresses many different needs of its members and the community. “Community service is a core value of the RAC,” says Pamela Ray, RAC’s neighborhood director. One of the ways the RAC demonstrates its commitment to the community is through the organization’s youth programming. “We provide options for parents working outside (and inside) the home to have a safe and fun place for children, starting at six months old,” Ray says. “Much of the design of the RAC is family focused.”

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F Feature

The RAC’s “neighborhood”offers a safe and fun place for kids.

Of course, the recent COVID-19 pandemic dramatically altered the idea of a safe health club environment. With that came challenges for parents who were looking for a safe environment for their children. As a result, the RAC team rallied and quickly shifted gears to provide up to 12 hours of daily care to children of essential workers. “With our Camp Einstein program, we continued to be a resource for families through the six months of distance learning in the fall and winter of the 2022/2021 school year,” Ray says. The RAC’s Camp Einstein still operates on Rochester Public Schools (RPS) non-school days not associated with a holiday. Steve Boring, fitness director at RAC, further explains that the RAC’s established protocols gained the trust of families new to the RAC and new to the area, resulting in exponential growth in RAC’s youth programs over the past two years. In addition to Camp Einstein, the RAC hosts camps during RPS school breaks and has nine summer camp options available to members and non-members. “We tailor our camps to need the developmental age, skill level, and athletic interest of the specific child,” Boring says.

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Physical Health Options

In addition to its community outreach and programming, the RAC offers a full range of services that can greatly benefit health and wellbeing of members of all ages, including personal training, registered dietitians, health and wellness coaching, small group training, and large format group fitness classes. According to Boring, everything the RAC offers in its fitness department is geared towards helping members achieve their health and wellness goals. “We work diligently to offer something for everyone, working with members ranging from first time exercisers, looking to improve their health, to world level strength athletes,” Boring says. One of the RAC’s newest addition is a strength equipment line called EGYM, which is a series of machines that functions as a workout partner. It is set up in circuit fashion to train all the major muscle groups of the body. “With EGYM, you can complete an entire strength workout in as little as 22 minutes,” Boring says. “It

April 2022

Feature F takes the guess work out of strength training, including gamifying the workout to help the user maintain correct repetition tempo.” The RAC’s main priority in the fitness department is to help our members reach their goals safely and effectively. As such, the RAC team consistently strives to offer more variety of classes, specialized training options, and quicker, more efficient ways to get workouts in no matter how busy someone may be.

improve our members opportunities, efficiency, and experience.”

As a multipurpose club, the RAC includes things for all members from tennis to swimming to group classes and their new futuristic EGYM.

“By keeping these goals in sight, we can help you reach your goals too,” Boring says.

Embracing Challenges

Although the RAC provided ongoing programming for members during the pandemic, the health and fitness industry was hit hard with the restrictions and shutdowns resulting from the pandemic. As Frueh points out, approximately one in four gyms, boutiques, and health clubs did not survive, and that number could go higher. “At one point during the pandemic, we lost over half our members. The good news is that we are rebounding quickly,” Frueh says. “One of the benefits of the last two years is that more people have realized the importance of getting healthy though proper nutrition and exercise. The communal aspect of the RAC, coupled with the activities we offer play a large role in improving mental health while reducing the risk of lifestyle diseases.” To further the member experience, Remick and Frueh are continually involved in club industry roundtables and members of the RAC’s management team attend annual education and industry shows to remain on the front edge of fitness and wellness. “We are always looking for new ideas for the RAC. For over eight years, I have been wanting equipment than can offer our members what our new EGYM equipment does, but we waited to find the right equipment and combination before investing in the equipment for the RAC,” Remick says. “We are constantly looking for ways to

April 2022

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M Meet the Member

MEET THE MEMBER: NH BOUTIQUE Shopping is a fun and fulfilling

activity to do by yourself, with a friend, or even in a group. Shopping local can enhance the shopping experience by connecting you with your community and can help support local businesses as well as the local economy. NH Boutique is one of these wonderful local shops that offers women’s clothing, shoes, accessories, and gifts. They cater to women of all sizes and ages and strongly believe in supporting and uplifting one another. Owner of NH Boutique, Lindsey Snyder, provided us with more information.

Q: Tell us more about NH Boutique.

What does your company offer to the Rochester region? A: Women‘s clothing, shoes, accessories and gifts, catering to women of all sizes & ages!

Q: How did it start for NH Boutique? A: We originally started making

handmade kids items (NH boutique started as Nevaeh’s Boutique Heaven- named after my Owner of NH Boutique, Lindsey Snyder (pictured, daughter), then switched to left), shows her daughter Nevaeh (pictured, right) wholesaling women’s fashion in a that she can do anything she puts her mind to, 100 sq ft room, then expanded to including own your own business. a traveling BUS, then moved to an entire basement, then moved to one garage stall that turned into 3 garage stalls and now we have the store front on Q: What is a unique fact people should know about south Broadway. Being a single mama is hard, but NH Boutique? showing my daughter she can do anything she puts A: It’s truly more than just “clothes”, NH is building a her mind to! community of women who help support and uplift one another, improving confidence and self esteem! Q: NH Boutique became a member of the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce in July of 2021. What Q: What is the outlook for your business and do you find valuable in your membership to the industry? organization? A: We plan to continue to grow locally and A: The connections within the community through nationally, growing our community of rockstar the chamber have been fantastic.

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April 2022

Meet the Member M women who uplift one another. We have some plans in the works we can’t divulge, stay tuned......

“NH IS BUILDING A COMMUNITY OF WOMEN WHO HELP SUPPORT AND UPLIFT ONE ANOTHER.” Visit NH Boutique in person at 1827 South Broadway in Rochester or visit them online at

The staff at NH Boutique work hard to make NH Boutique a great place to shop.

NH Boutique’s storefront is located at Owner Frank (pictured)infounded 1827 Spaeth South Broadway Rochester, Med CityMN. FC in December of 2016. The team played their first game in the summer of 2017.

April 2022

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THANK YOU FOR JOINING US! The Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce kicked of spring with the 2022

Annual Celebration on Thursday, March 31st. The night consisted of great food, networking, recaps of the Rochester Area business community, and an inspiring speech from keynote speaker Elliot Kotek. Thank you to everyone who attended and for our wonderful sponsors for making this event possible.

Presenting Sponsors:

Gold Sponsor:

Silver Sponsors:

Bronze Sponsors:

Media Sponsor:

Destination Medical Center ISG Kwik Trip Minnesota Energy Resources Rochester Airport Company RSP Architects Star Tribune Media Company Treasure Island Resort and Casino West Bank Table Sponsors: Altra Federal Credit Union Associated Bank Avra Hospitality Benike Construction Bolton & Menk, Inc. City of Rochester CRW Architecture + Design Group Destination Medical Center Doma Title Dunlap & Seeger, P.A. Edward Jones -Kirk Boyum

Hawkins Ash CPA’s HGA IBM Corporation KNXR - MN 97.5 MetroNet Nuss Truck Group Inc. Olmsted County ONB Bank Premier Bank Rochester Rochester Community and Technical College

Rochester Post Bulletin Rochester Title & Escrow Company, Inc. Schad Tracy Signs The Boldt Company Think Bank Townsquare Media Widseth Wings Financial Credit Union Winona State University - Rochester Workforce Development, Inc.

C Chamber News

hosted by

hosted by

Join us for Business after Hours (BAH), a monthly

AM Espresso is a monthly Networking PLUS event

Come and connect, expand your network, and build community while enjoying New Spin Bicycle Shop on Thursday, April 21 from 4:30PM - 6:30PM.

Come join fellow Chamber and community members to expand your network, promote your business, and enjoy delicious breakfast refreshments. This month, you are invited to Southeast Service Cooperative.

networking function which brings professionals together to network and build valuable business relationships. Enjoy delicious food and drinks while connecting with a variety of business and organizations operating in the greater Rochester area. This event is a great opportunity to increase your organization’s visibility and generate productive business leads.

Date: Thursday, April 21, 2022 Time: 4:30pm-6:30pm Location: New Spin Bicycle Shop, 5335 E Frontage Rd., Suite C, Rochester, MN Admission: Free, registration required

Register here:

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brought to you by the Chamber. Come join fellow Chamber and community members to expand your network, promote your business, and enjoy delicious breakfast refreshments. We believe there is value for all in building a supportive business community. As the local economy shifts towards recovery, it is more important than ever to interact with each other to share ideas and best practices.

Date: Friday, May 6, 2022 Time: 7:30am-9:00am Location: 210 Woodlake Dr. SE, Rochester, MN Admission: Free, registration required

Register here:

April 2022

Chamber News C



Lemonade Day is a free, fun, experiential learning

Fresh Squeeze Sponsors:

program that teaches local youth entrepreneurial and life skills as they learn how to start their very own business. Learn how to develop a business and experience all the aspects of developing and maintaining a business such as creating a product, establishing a budget, designing a marketing plan, and so much more! Each child that registers receives access to the Lemonade Day curriculum that teaches them lessons like creating budgets, setting profit-making goals, serving customers, repaying investors, and giving back to the community. Along the way, they acquire skills in goal-setting, problem solving, and gain self-esteem critical for future success. They keep all the money they make and are encouraged to spend some, save some and share some.

Lemon Drop Sponsors:

Date: Saturday, June 11, 2022 Location: Rochester, MN Admission: Free, registration required

Register here:

April 2022

Lemon Drop Sponsor: Wells Fargo

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C Chamber News


Date: Tuesday, April 26, 2022 Time: 11:30am-1:00pm Location: The Hilton Rochester Mayo Clinic Area, 10 E Center St., Rochester, MN Admission: $35 Member, $30 Virtual Member, $45 Virtual General Admission

As Rochester continues to grow and evolve, you

Presenting Sponsors:

won’t want to miss out on your chance to hear directly from our local government representatives and administrators on their 2022 initiatives, programs, and priorities during Local Government Connect! This timely event will feature representatives from the City, the County, the Parks Department, and the Public Schools giving brief updates and answering questions on issues impacting our local business community. Agenda: Welcome, Rochester Area Chamber Olmsted County Update • Olmsted County Commissioner Mark Thein, Seventh District • Olmsted County Administrator Heidi Welsch City of Rochester Update • Council President Brooke Carlson • Rochester City Administrator Alison Zelms City of Rochester Parks Department Update • Director of Parks and Recreation Paul Widman Rochester Public Schools • Rochester Public Schools Chair Dr. Jean Marvin • Rochester Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Kent Pekel Q&A **Additional panelists to be announced

Register here:

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Gold Sponsor:

Silver Sponsor:

Table Sponsors:

Bolton and Menk, Inc. Southeast Service Cooperative Wells Fargo

April 2022

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The Legislative Update is a strategic event that

highlights Minnesota legislative activity impacting business at a time when there is more clarity around likely session outcomes. Featuring area legislators and policy experts, this event connects Chamber members directly with the decision makers in St. Paul for information and productive dialogue. Agenda: Legislative Panel Discussion Moderator – Ryan Parsons, President, Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce • Representative Liz Boldon • Representative Nels Pierson • Representative Duane Quam • Senator David Senjem

Gold Sponsor:

Silver Sponsors:

Legislative Update: Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development – Legislative Perspective, Priorities & Outlook • Steve Grove, Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development Date: Thursday, April 14, 2022 Time: 8:00am-9:30am Location: The Hilton Rochester Mayo Clinic Area, 10 E Center St., Rochester, MN Admission: $35 Member, $45 General Admission

Table Sponsors:

Bolton and Menk, Inc. RSP Architects Wells Fargo

Register here:

April 2022

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C Chamber News


No ifs, ands, or putts, space is limited - register today for the 2022 Annual Golf Outing!

Assemble your foursome for the 42nd Annual

Birdie Sponsors:

Chamber Golf Outing. Hosted at the beautiful Willow Creek Golf Course on Monday, June 20! The day will be filled with great networking, good food and exciting golf. The team with the lowest score will be awarded the President’s Cup. See you on the green, register your team! Call (507) 424-5687 or contact Ally Sheehan at for more information or to register today. Date: Monday, June 20, 2022 Registration: 9:30 - 11:00AM Shotgun Start: 11:00AM Dinner & Awards: 5:00PM Location: Willow Creek Golf Course, 1700 48th St. SW, Rochester, MN Admission: Early Bird Rates: March 7 – April 30 • Individual registration - $165 • Team of four registration - $660 Golf Rates: May 1 – June 17 • Individual registration - $200 • Team of four registration - $800

Register here:

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Driving Range Sponsor:

Hole Sponsors: Altra Federal Credit Union MetroNet APX Construction Group Northwestern Mutual CLA Olmsted Medical Center Custom Alarm ONB Bank Haley Comfort Systems Reagan Outdoor Advertising KIMT Think Bank KNXR - MN 97.5 Cart Sponsor: Bremer Bank Lunch and Dinner Sponsor: Rochester Motor Cars

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Chamber News C

2022 NOMINATING COMMITTEE ANNOUNCED The Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce is

excited to announce the 2022 Nominating Committee. Thank you to the following business leaders who have volunteered to serve on the committee to select new Directors joining the Chamber Board of Directors in October 2022:

The Chamber is currently seeking nominations of area business community leaders to serve on the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. To forward a nomination or to learn more, please contact Ryan Parsons at

Dr. Christina Beech Copiavia

Aaron Benike Benike Construction

Zoey Jantsan - Chair Jantsan Real Estate powered by Edina Realty

Susan Mackert PossAbilities of Southern Minnesota, Inc.

Chris Petree WSB


Sometimes business has to be taken care of, and sometimes it has to be in person. With 50,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, state-of-the-art a/v equipment, luxurious hotel rooms and award winning catering, Treasure Island is the perfect place to stay connected with your clients, partners and vendors. Let’s get down to business together.

T I c a s i n o . c o m | 1 - 8 0 0 -2 2 2 -707 7 © 2022 Treasure Island Resort & Casino

April 2022

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C Chamber News

APPLICATIONS OPEN APRIL 12 FOR LEADERSHIP GREATER ROCHESTER 1987, this program has propelled leaders in the community to further be inspired, connected and enlightened. The 950 alumni who have graduated from LGR have gone on to serve in various civic, community, and business leadership positions. The LGR network stretches across the community, present in almost every sector.

Applications will open Tuesday, April 12th for the

2022-2023 Leadership Greater Rochester class. The applications close in June 2022. Leadership Greater Rochester is the Chamber’s premier leadership development program. Since

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This 10-month program immerses three dozen leaders in sessions examining everything from economic development and the local arts scene, to workforce development and building a sustainable community. Through enriching conversations, behind-the-scenes tours, and work on the Community Impact Project, the LGR experience builds lifelong relationships and provides opportunities for business and community leaders to shape and contribute to the fabric of the greater Rochester area.

April 2022


C Community News

BE AWARE OF GOOGLE’S ALGORITHM UPDATES By Dean Swanson, volunteer Certified SCORE Mentor and former SCORE Chapter Chair, District Director, and Regional Vice President for the North West Region

It’s a given that all small businesses—no matter their

size or industry—must have a website. That’s how most consumers discover businesses—by searching for them on one of the search engines. Realistically, Google dominates searches, with an 87.8% share. So it’s also a given that when Google updates its algorithms (called core updates), it can wreak havoc on your search rankings. As Search Engine Journal says, “Google’s acknowledgment of core updates is always vague and doesn’t provide much detail other than to say the update occurred.” Rieva Lesonsky, one of SCORE’s content partners and also President and CEO of GrowBiz Media, recently reported some important information on the topic of search engine operations that are very important for websites. As Google itself explains, “We confirm broad core updates because they typically produce some widely notable effects. Some sites may note drops or gains during them. We know those with sites that experience drops will be looking for a fix, and we want to ensure they don’t try to fix the wrong things. Moreover, there might not be anything to fix at all.” There may have been a core update in January that impacted your business. So, what does it all mean? To get the answers, Lesonsky talked to Chris Rodgers, CEO and founder of Colorado SEO Pros. So many business owners don’t know about Google’s core updates and the potentially devastating effect they can have on their businesses. What does this all actually mean? Chris Rodgers: Google’s core updates generally affect large portions of websites in Google’s index, and often, the changes in SEO performance resulting from these updates are significant. Whenever we see large-scale changes in search results, there will be both winners and losers, but the fallout for marketers and businesses on the losing

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side can be a huge deal depending on how much business revenue they generate from SEO. How often (typically) does Google drop these updates? Is there a schedule? Rodgers: There is not a schedule, but typically Google will release a few of these each year. Last year we had three core algorithm updates, plus many other major updates and countless minor updates throughout the year. Rodgers: Google will typically confirm core algorithm updates, as well as some other targeted updates after they happen. There are, however, countless updates that Google does not confirm. SEO industry professionals communicate and share data to understand how the update is affecting websites and use this information to navigate strategy. One big benefit SEO agencies have is that they typically have a collection of sites they manage, so they have direct insight into how the update affects different clients’ websites. To read more, visit SCORE’s website at

April 2022

Community News C

ROCHESTER RECOGNIZED FOR INNOVATIVE DIVERSITY PROGRAM “Despite the challenges that communities continue to face today, local leaders remain deeply committed to diversity, innovation, access and inclusivity to the benefit of all their residents,” said NLC President and Mayor of Union City, GA, Vince Williams. “The National League of Cities is proud to recognize the winners of this year’s 2022 Cultural Diversity Awards and celebrate these programs aimed at fulfilling the promise of America’s cities, towns and villages.” The City of Rochester was recognized for the award at NLC’s 2022 Congressional City Conference in Washington, D.C. Rochester Mayor Kim Norton accepts the 2022 Cultural Diversity Award for the city of Rochester in Washington, D.C.,on March 14, 2022.

The National League of Cities (NLC) selected the City of Rochester as the winner of its 2022 Cultural Diversity Awards.

Submissions were grouped by size and were evaluated for creativity, impact on the community and scope of the program. The City of Rochester was awarded top prize in the 50,001 – 200,000 population category for its program, “Equity In the Built Environment; Establishing Career Pathways for BIPOC Women.” “It is such an honor to see our City teammates, co-designers, community partners and supportive community members recognized for their work in the diversity, equity and inclusions space,” shared Rochester Mayor Kim Norton. “There is plenty more work to be done, and this recognition serves as motivation to keep going.” The City of Rochester was one of only four communities across the United States selected for the 2022 awards.

April 2022

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N Newsreel

NEWSREEL Updates from the Chamber member community. Johnson Assumes New Role

Klein Receives Promotion

Cook Promoted to News Director

LaVelle Joins KAAL TV/ ABC 6 News

Dodge-Fillmore-Olmsted (DFO) Community Corrections program manager James Johnson will continue his career with Olmsted County as the next division administrator for Health, Housing, and Human Services (HHH). Johnson officially assumed the role on Monday, March 14, 2022.

Bill Klein has been promoted to General Sales Manager of ABC 6 News. Bill has been with ABC 6 News for over 22-years and provides an energetic and positive leadership style for the ABC 6 News Sales Staff.

Brianna Cook has been promoted to News Director of ABC 6 News. Brianna first started at ABC 6 in 2009 and has held several roles at the station, including the anchor of ABC 6 News Good Morning for the past seven years. She’s excited to grow in her new role and lead an amazing team of journalists.

Rhonda LaVelle has joined KAAL TV/ABC 6 as Vice President & General Manager. Rhonda has worked in broadcast television for the past 25 years in several markets including Flint/Saginaw, Houston and most recently Detroit. She is excited about the move to Minnesota and looks forward to making community connections throughout Rochester and the region.

Torkelson Joins Associated Bank

New Service Operations Manager

Keefe Earns Financial Advisor Status

Hoffman Joins SMMPA

Thomas Torkelson has joined Associated Bank as vice president, commercial relationship manager, for the Rochester and Red Wing markets. He is responsible for building a portfolio of loans and deposits, as well as working with internal bank partners to help customers with their banking needs.

Valor Mechanical is happy to announce that (former) Project Manager Joe West has recently transitioned into the role of Service Operations Manager! Joe joined Valor in 2021 after years as a tradesman in both the mechanical and construction industries – most recently as an HVAC Service Technician for Service Choice at MN Energy – so this transition was an easy decision.

NorthStar Financial Partners, LLC of Rochester, MN has announced that Kirsten Keefe is now a financial advisor at the firm. She is a graduate of Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota with a degree in Finance and Management. We at NorthStar Financial Partners are excited to have her on board.

Joe Hoffman joins Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (SMMPA). as the Director of Agency and Government Relations & Chief External Affairs Officer. He replaces Chris Schoenherr who is retiring from SMMPA on April 1 after over forty years in the energy industry and seven years with the Agency.

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April 2022

Event Lineup E



2022 Legislative Update

Women’s Roundtable

Date: Thursday, April 14, 2022

Date: Friday, April 15, 2022

Time: 8:00am-9:30am

Time: 7:30am-9:00am

Location: The Hilton Rochester

Location: Rochester Area Chamber

Mayo Clinic Area, 10 E Center St., Rochester, MN

of Commerce Conference Room, 220 S Broadway

Admission: $35 Members

Ave., Ste 100, Rochester, MN or Virtual Zoom

$45 General Admission

FREE - Registration required



Business After Hours - New Spin Bicycle Shop

Local Government Connect

Date: Thursday, April 21, 2022

Time: 11:30am-1:00pm

Time: 4:30pm-6:30pm Location: New Spin Bicycle Shop, 5335 E Frontage

Date: Tuesday, April 26, 2022 Location: The Hilton Rochester Mayo Clinic Area, 10 E Center St., Rochester, MN

Rd., Suite C, Rochester, ,MN

Admission: $35 Members

FREE - Registration required

$45 General Admission



Date: Thursday, April 28, 2022

AM Espresso - Southeast Service Cooperative

Time: 8:00am-9:00am

Date: Friday, May 6, 2022

Location: Cascade Meadows, Saint

Time: 7:30am-9:00am

Mary’s University - Rochester Campus, Meeting

Location: 210 Woodlake Dr. SE, Rochester, MN

Room 102, 2900 19th St. NW, Rochester, MN

FREE - Registration required

WE Forum

FREE - Registration required

April 2022

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R Ribbon Cuttings

Ribbon Cuttings

Congratulations to the following members on their successful Ribbon Cuttings!

Restorations Neurofeedback & Wellness

Mezza9 Cafe & Bakery

1221 3rd Ave. SW, Ste 220, Rochester, MN

20 3rd St. SW, Rochester, MN

Pace International

Chapter Aesthetic Studio

Restorations Neurofeedback & Wellness celebrated their Grand Opening and new Chamber membership with a ribbon cutting on February 18th. Owner, Pernell Meier, cut the ribbon.

Pace International celebrated their 50th Anniversary with a ribbon cutting on March 1st. 3582 Technology Dr. NW, Rochester, MN

Mezza9 Cafe & Bakery celebrated their Grand Opening and new Chamber membership with a ribbon cutting on February 28th. President, Sammi Loo, cut the ribbon.

Chapter Aesthetic Studio celebrated their Grand Opening and new Chamber membership with a ribbon cutting on March 9th. Founder and President, Melissa Rogne, cut the ribbon. 815 Apache Lane SW, Suite 100, Rochester, MN

Fit My Feet Orthotics & Shoes

Nashville Coop

3780 Broadway Ave. N, Rochester, MN

102 20th St. SE, Rochester, MN

Fit My Feet celebrated the Grand Opening of their new location with a ribbon cutting on March 17th. cut the ribbon.

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Nashville Coop celebrated the Grand Opening and new Chamber membership with a ribbon cutting on March 21st. cut the ribbon.

April 2022

Welcome to the Chamber W

WELCOME TO THE CHAMBER! Introducing our newest members. Joy Ridge Event Center

Country Boom, LLC

Prinvest Advisors

Wedding Day Diamonds

Wings Financial Credit Union

Julie Brock Consulting, LLC

Elite Exterior Solutions

Thai Pop

Kirsten Tangen (507) 218-7743 273 Mill Creek Rd. NW, Chatfield, MN 55923

Justin Glasrud (507) 535-3542 2774 Commerce Dr. NW, Ste A, Rochester, MN 55901

Chauncey Oliva (612) 500-7704 4287 West Circle Dr. NW, Rochester, MN 55901

Dave Ring (608) 792-5060 P.O. Box 1942, La Crosse, WI 54602

Shania Goertz (507) 254-5575 815 Apache Lane SW, Ste 110, Rochester, MN 55902

Julie Brock (507) 421-6487 6291 Hidden Hollow Ct. SE, Eyota, MN 55984

Ryan and Annie Balow (507) 271-1001 4 3rd St. SW, Rochester, MN 55902

Corporate Technologies

At Home

Roy Kratt (507) 459-3833 1500 1st Ave. NE, Rochester, MN 55906

Bruce Sword (952) 715-3546 6210 Bury Dr., Eden Prairie, MN 55346

Jes Peterson (507) 577-9211 4228 8th St. SW, Rochester, MN 55902

Do you know of a business that has recently opened in Rochester? Are you connected to a business-owner looking to expand their network? Then a Chamber membership is right for them! Please contact with any referrals.

April 2022

Advantage Magazine | 25

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220 South Broadway, Suite 100 Rochester, MN 55904 507-288-1122

Rochester, MN



FREE Re-build - Re-invigorate - Re-invest

2 02 2 Wo rk f o r c e Deve l o pm e n t F o ru m THURSDAY, APRIL 28 // 12:00-4:30 P.M.

This virtual event is FREE and open to all employers and public in Southeast Minnesota. REGISTER:

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