Blandin Foundation awards $3.7 million in grants, names trustees

GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. – Trustees of Blandin Foundation elected three new board members and approved 53 grants totaling $3,282,607 during their summer meeting on June 24 and 25 in Grand Rapids.

Dr. Heidi Korstad, chair of the Foundation’s board of trustees, announced that three distinguished Minnesota residents emerged from a statewide search and will join its 12-member board in January 2020, filling the positions of three who will complete 12-year maximum service at the end of 2019.   This election follows three new trustees from the Itasca County being named last year and beginning their service in January 2019.

Joining the Blandin Foundation board of trustees will be Dustin Goslin of Brainerd, Bukata Hayes of Mankato, and Nadege Souvenir of Minneapolis.

Trustees also formed a transition team and initiated a national CEO search following the announcement by Dr. Kathleen Annette to retire in 2020.  Annette joined the Foundation in 2011 as president and CEO following a distinguished career with Indian Health Service.

“It is a credit to Kathy Annette and our current trustees that the foundation is ready for these changes,” said Korstad.  “We are in a great place—strong teams of staff and trustees, financially solid, and with a clear strategic path forward.  The board is grateful to both those transitioning out of roles and to those who are stepping up to serve new ones.  We continue to be well-served with excellent leaders and stewards of Mr. Blandin’s legacy.”

During its very full meeting, trustees approved 53 grants ranging from $2.1 million for ongoing support of the Invest Early program to $10,000 in project support for the youth workforce training programs of Northeast Minnesota Office of Job Training to $10,000 in project support for Itasca County area veterans through the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans.  The complete list of June 2019 grants awarded, as well as all Blandin Foundation grants since 1943, can be found at its website.

Trustees also approved 2018 audited financial statements, which also are available at the Foundation’s website.

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