Fairmont Area Residents Participate in Blandin Community Leadership Program

Fairmont Area Residents Participate in Blandin Community Leadership Program Main Photo

19 Feb 2020

Economic Development

Fairmont, MN – The Blandin Community Leadership Program (BCLP) hosted 23 Fairmont area residents on October 2019 in a five-day leadership retreat. This was the first segment of an intense eight-day training program with three follow-up workshops.

“This program is an excellent opportunity for Fairmont leaders to share ideas and think about ways to improve our awareness efforts in Fairmont,” said Linsey Preuss, Fairmont Economic Development Authority. “This was effective training and a motivative group.”

A program of the Grand Rapids-based Blandin Foundation, BCLP has provided experiential leadership training for more than 7,000 community leaders from nearly 500 rural Minnesota communities since it began in 1985.  This is the third time the communities have participated in the BCLP leadership program.

Local residents participating in this training were:

Stephanie Busiahn, Brandon Edmundson, Tony Fink, Anna Garbers, Chris Gerhardt, Katy Gonzalez, Bryan Gregor, Adam Hinz, Jen Kahler, Kate Kallenbach, Ned Koppen, Logan Peymann, Sara Pierce, Linsey Preuss, Kylie Saari, Kris Seifert, Kathy Smith, Jason SubbertSuzanne Sukalski, Dustin Tino, Andy Traetow, Sam Viesselman and Liz Wheeler.

According to Blandin, the goal of the Blandin Community Leadership Program is to develop and train a broad base of local leaders to build healthy communities. Topics covered during the retreat included: identifying and describing community issues and opportunities through the lens of the 9 dimensions of a healthy community, effective interpersonal communication, building social capital, appreciating personality differences, managing interpersonal conflict, understanding community power, mobilizing community resources, and goal setting.

“A healthy community depends on leadership engagement of community members,” said Kathy Annette, president and CEO of Blandin Foundation. “The leadership demonstrated by these participants reflects their commitment to their community, as well as to the region and to rural Minnesota.”

BCLP training programs are funded entirely by the Blandin Foundation, whose mission is to strengthen rural Minnesota communities, especially the Grand Rapids area.


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