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Initiative Quarterly

Initiators Fellowship Program


Empowering Entrepreneurs to Make a Difference

The Initiators Fellowship, a partnership among four of the Minnesota Initiative Foundations, is a two-year suite of supports—including training, mentoring and funding—for beginning or early stage social entrepreneurs in Central, Southwest, Northwest and West Central Minnesota. These Greater Minnesota leaders are helping to build the economy and quality of life in their hometowns by developing purpose-driven, for-profit businesses and nonprofit organizations that have a positive social or environmental impact. The Fellowship is a one-of-a-kind opportunity worth considering if you’re a hometown leader (or hope to be) and have an early-stage social enterprise idea.

We are now recruiting for the 2024-2025 cohort. Take the Eligibility Quiz to see if you qualify. 

Learn more about the program and social entrepreneurship by visiting fellows.greaterminnesota.net or by contacting Christine Metzo, Initiators Fellowship program manager, at initiators(at)ifound.org or (320) 631-2019.

The 2022-2023 cohort of Initiators Fellows started in January 2022. These eight individuals were selected from a pool of applicants from across the 53 counties of the Initiative Foundation, Northwest Minnesota FoundationSouthwest Initiative Foundation and West Central Initiative regions. Learn more about the 2022-2023 Fellows

Learn more about the program by visiting fellows.greaterminnesota.net or contact Christine Metzo, Initiators Fellowship program manager, at (320) 631-2019.


The Initiative Foundation would like to thank the many generous partners who aided in the development and funding of the Initiators Fellowship program. Special thanks to Granite Partners, a mission-driven private investment and holding company combining long-term business growth with a dedication to community well-being, for working in concert with the Initiative Foundation to develop the Initiators Fellowship program and for providing initial and ongoing funding that supports the program.
Support also comes from the Bush Foundation, the McKnight Foundation and Sourcewell.

Learn more about the Initiators Fellowship on fellows.greaterminnesota.net.

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Christine Metzo
Initiators Fellowship Program Manager
(320) 631-2019


Mary Kaye Peterson
Entrepreneurship Program Specialist


Brian Voerding
Vice President for Inclusive Entrepreneurship
(320) 631-2006

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