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New Forge North Council Brings Together Local Leaders to Fuel Growth

Forge North Leadership Council

Forge North, a strategic initiative of the Greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul region’s economic development partnership, has announced the formation of a new leadership council to help accomplish their ambitious 2030 goal of making the Greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul region the best place for people from every background to start and scale ventures that build wealth by solving global challenges.

The Forge North Leadership Council represents diverse networks, including entrepreneurs, investors, corporate and government innovators, and community builders. This team, powered by the GREATER MSP Partnership, will look to the community to set goals and take action at scale.

“We must dream bigger to achieve the next iteration of ourselves,” said Brett Carter, Executive Vice President and Chief Customer & Innovation Officer at Xcel Energy. “Working in partnership gives us a chance to be competitive in the new American economy. The strong base of established large companies and the vast number of entrepreneurs is a great basis for a new platform.”

Forge North Leadership Council members include:

  • Angie Bastian, Co-Founder, Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP
  • Jessica Berg, Director of Minnesota Cup, Holmes Center for Entrepreneurship
  • Jason Breen, Senior Director, Enterprise Accelerators, Target
  • Brett Brohl, Managing Director, Techstars Farm-to-Fork Accelerator; Managing Director, The Syndicate Fund
  • Brett Carter, Executive Vice President and Chief Customer & Innovation Officer, Xcel Energy
  • Mary Grove, Partner, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund
  • Brian Gustafson, Managing Director, Investments, Tonkawa, the Carlson Family Office
  • Mark Henneman, Chairman & CEO, Mairs & Power
  • Amy Langer, Co-Founder, Salo
  • Neela Mollgaard, Executive Director, Launch Minnesota, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development
  • Anisha Murphy, Director of Community Engagement, Northside Economic Opportunity Network; Owner, Just Law LLC
  • Sam Ndely, Business Consultant, Metropolitan Economic Development Association; co-founder, Graveti
  • Damola Ogundipe, Co-Founder, Civic Eagle

Leaders from organizations like Minnestar, Gener8tor, BETA and Twin Cities Startup Week, and others are also directing teams and projects of the Forge North coalition.

“We’ve seen how the wisdom of crowds has helped improve society and decision making,” said Damola Ogundipe. “By working in partnership, we’re harnessing that wisdom to create a region that looks, feels, and acts inclusively while creating opportunities.”

To help the Council and this growing coalition take its next steps, you can weigh in on big goals for the local ecosystem in 2020 and beyond. You can vote on specific options or add your own until December 8.

Want to know more about economic development efforts in the region? Check out our recent podcast episode with guest Matt Lewis of Greater MSP.
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