Grand Rapids, Minn. — Twenty-three residents of the Frazee, Vergas and Wolf Lake areas returned October 10 from a five-day leadership retreat, the first segment of an intense eight-day training provided by the Blandin Community Leadership Program (BCLP). The team also will participate in follow-up workshops in January and March 2015.
A program of the Grand Rapids-based Blandin Foundation, BCLP has provided experiential leadership training for more than 6,000 community leaders from more than 425 rural Minnesota communities since it began in 1985. This is the first time residents of these three communities have participated as a single cohort in the BCLP leadership program.
Local residents participating in this training were:
Nate Aho, April Anderson, Nick Courneya, Dawn Flemmer, Mark Flemmer, Karen Gorentz, Myron Gunderson, Dean Haarstick, Cheryl Hanson, Diane Hanson, Theresa Harthun, Dennis Hass, Kathryn Hass, Robert Hinckley, Jan Jackola, Dave Jopp II, Terry Karger, Julie Lammers, Naomi Maki, Bryan Perry, Paul Pinke, Daneele Shipman and Vanessa Sleen.
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, 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 Valerie Shangreaux, director of Blandin leadership programs. “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.
Photo caption – Frazee Vergas Wolf Lake
Participants in BCLP training October 6 – 10 included:
Back Row: (left to right)- Robert Hinckley, Mark Flemmer, Bryan Perry, Terry Karger, Nick Courneya, Doug Allen (Trainer), and Myron Gunderson
Middle Row: (left to right)- Dennis Hass, Paul Pinke, Karen Gorentz, April Anderson, Julie Lammers, Jan Jackola, Cheryl Hanson, Dave Jopp II, Julie Steiff (Trainer), and Vanessa Sleen
Front Row: (left to right)- Nate Aho, Theresa Harthun, Dean Haarstick, Kathryn Hass, Naomi Maki, Diane Hanson, Dawn Flemmer, and Daneele Shipman