LEECH LAKE TRIBAL COLLEGE
Leech Lake Tribal College is a beacon of hope and opportunity in the Central Minnesota community of Cass Lake. As a participant in the Initiative Foundation’s Financial Resiliency Through Social Enterprise program, the two-year Anishinaabe college turned its in-house print shop into a profit center that provides educational and employment opportunities while meeting the wider community’s printing needs. “This worked perfectly into the mission and viability of our college,” said Don Day, president at Leech Lake Tribal College. The Outstanding Nonprofit Award is co-sponsored by Bremer Bank, Brainerd, and Bremer Bank, St. Cloud.
THE LATE CHUCK CHRISTIAN AND HIS FAMILY
Chuck Christian was known as “The Rock of Rogers.” Always positive, always upbeat, Chuck brought a can-do attitude to everything he did. The founder of Christian Realty and Christian Builders, Chuck transformed his success into numerous avenues of community outreach—from his leadership in the Rogers Lions and Rotary clubs to his roles as an Initiative Foundation board of trustees member and founding member and champion of the Three Rivers Community Foundation, a component fund of the Initiative Foundation. Chuck passed away in November 2013, but his legacy lives on in his children and their civic involvement. The Outstanding Generosity Award is sponsored by Clow Stamping Co., a Merrifield-based metal stamping and fabrication company.
PINE CITY AREA EARLY CHILDHOOD COALITION
The Pine City Area Early Childhood Coalition is being recognized for its strong commitment to early childhood initiatives—from literacy campaigns to a focus on social and emotional well-being to school readiness programs. One of the hallmarks of the Pine City program is the “Dragon Wagon,” a mobile preschool that delivers books and other learning tools to remote areas to foster reading, literacy and learning. The Pine City Area Early Childhood Coalition has earned several grants from the Initiative Foundation. The Outstanding Community Award is sponsored by Gray Plant Mooty, a law firm with offices in St. Cloud, Minneapolis and Washington, D.C.
MIDSOTA MANUFACTURING, INC.
What started as a garage-based welding business in the early ‘70s has grown into an automated utility trailer and accessory manufacturing business with distribution throughout North America. Throughout its growth, Midsota Manufacturing has been a hometown hero by working with the city to keep its operations based in Avon. The Initiative Foundation has invested in the ongoing growth and expansion of Midsota Manufacturing through its business financing and technical assistance programs. The Outstanding Enterprise Award is sponsored by Schlenner Wenner & Co., a certified public accounting firm with offices in Albany, Little Falls, Maple Lake and Monticello and St. Cloud.
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