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  • Celebrating The Good Jobs Challenge Grant and the Future

  • Celebrating The Good Jobs Challenge Grant and the Future

    Celebrating The Good Jobs Challenge Grant and the Future


    I hope you are all enjoying the last few weeks of summer. As we enter our new fiscal year, I want to take a moment to thank you all for the integral role you’ve played in driving tremendous success and achievement within our community. Every major step forward we take as an organization, community and region, is made possible by you - our dedicated members who invest time, talent and resources into building a better tomorrow for Fargo Moorhead West Fargo and beyond. I am beyond excited to share with you all of the things we have been up to lately in the community, but especially the big goals and plans we have for the future.

    To start, I am overjoyed to share that in August, our Chamber Foundation was awarded a $9.62 million Good Jobs Challenge Grant from the Economic Development Administration. Together with several community organizations, we will be bolstering our region’s economy by training and developing a skilled workforce in the industries of precision agriculture, advanced manufacturing and cybersecurity/IT. This overall initiative is called the Ignite Initiative Regional Workforce Training System (IIRWTS), and within those industries we will focus specifically on enrollment of new Americans, justice-involved, people of color, military veterans and spouses, and high school students. This is without a doubt the highlight of my career as a chamber executive, and I am beyond grateful for the dedication and support from our entire community, and especially the 78 businesses and elected officials who submitted letters of support for this grant.  If you would like additional information or would like be a partner with us, please reach out to me or Jenna Mueller here at The Chamber.

    Also, we have some big news with The Bridge magazine; you may have noticed that this is a September-October issue. Over the past year, we have been steadily and organically increasing the reach of our Chamber and community voice for a variety of important reasons. We are now moving forward with six expanded issues of The Bridge per year, published bi-monthly, and investing our efforts into enhancing the reach and impact that our messages have. In the past, we would typically send around 12,000 physical and digital copies of the magazine to members, businesses, employees and leaders around town. Moving forward, our reach for each issue will be over 50,000 businesses and individuals. In addition to that, we are continuing to diversify our communication channels so you will see and hear us through numerous forms of media. We are extremely excited for this growth and evolution of The Bridge, and look forward to this becoming an even more powerful tool for the work that we are all doing together.

    As you flip through the magazine you’ll come across many stories about the big things in store for our region. I want to specifically call attention to Fueling Our Future (FOF) and the newly-unveiled Master Workforce & Talent Strategy for our region, as this was a top priority for FOF, and we now have a blueprint to success when it comes to workforce challenges in our region. I also want to give very special recognition to our 2022 Legacy Leader, Richard Solberg. Richard’s leadership over the years has had an immense and extremely positive impact on the vibrant and growing FMWF region that we know and love today. In fact, Richard was the very first person that reached out to welcome me to the community almost two years ago. Congratulations, Richard. Please join the community as we come together to honor him at our Annual Celebration on October 18.

    Enjoy this issue of The Bridge and I look forward to seeing you soon!


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