Growing Greater: 53 Counties in Cohort 3

As we head into 2021 and begin recruiting for Cohort 3, we are pleased to share that the Northwest Minnesota Foundation is joining the program. Their participation means 53 counties in Greater Minnesota are now being served by the Initiators Fellowship program.

That’s about two-thirds of all Greater Minnesota counties, and we couldn’t be more proud to support emerging and early-stage social entrepreneurs and leaders from Central, Northwest, Southwest and West Central Minnesota.

The Initiators Fellowship grew out of one simple question: “How can we grow rural leadership and support new generations of purpose-driven community leaders?”

The Fellowship was modelled after Echoing Green, a kindred program based in New York that supports social entrepreneurs who are working to solve big problems at home and around the globe. Our aspirations for Greater Minnesota are no less big or bold, just more geographically concentrated. As we grow to cover more of the state, our four Minnesota Initiative Foundation partners have high hopes for what can be accomplished—over the years and over the miles—by supporting, nurturing and growing our community of Initiator Fellows, mentors and valued advisors.

Contact, Chris Fastner, Initiators Fellowship program manager, at or (320) 631-2019.