NeTia Bauman, GSDC CEO & President, addressing investors.

A perfect summer day greeted more than 75 attendees at the GSDC’s Mid -Year Meeting on Aug. 17 at the Stearns History Museum.

A brief program inside the museum included remarks from GSDC Board Chair Joan Schatz, GSDC CEO & President NeTia Bauman, Stearns History Museum Interim Director Amy Degerstrom and the organization’s board chair, George Rindelaub.

The meeting quickly adjourned to food, drink and networking on the museum’s spacious outdoor plaza.  Thirty minutes of business followed by 90 minutes of mingling seemed like the ideal ratio for a summertime gathering.

We thank the folks at Stearns History Museum for generously sharing their beautiful facility with us.  A huge thank you goes out to Magnifi Financial for sponsoring the event and Viking Coca-Cola for sponsoring the beverages.



SCSU President Robbyn Wacker

St. Cloud State University President and GSDC Board Member Robbyn Wacker gave an informative presentation of today’s higher education realities – both nationally and at SCSU – during the Aug. 16 meeting of the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce’s Government Affairs Committee.

We were in attendance and found Dr. Wacker’s messages to be quite compelling.

Click here to view her presentation slides.



United Way Cradle to Career event

Congratulations to the United Way of Central Minnesota, which will receive $820,088 a year for the next three years, with the possibility for a three-year extension, through a Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21CCLC) Cohort 9 Grant.

These federal and state funds are awarded through a competitive process and are locally administered to support students enrolled in afterschool and out-of-school programming at St. Cloud Tech High School, St. Cloud Apollo High School, Sauk Rapids-Rice High School and St. Cloud North Junior High School.

Nationally, 21CCLC sites coordinate enrichment opportunities for students during non-school hours and when school is not in session. These sites reinforce the efforts of community partners who engage learners with high-quality experiences and supportive relationships that unleash potential, build skills and nurture lifelong success.

In the St. Cloud area, 21CCLC Cohort 9 funding builds on programming started in 2019, and allows over 20 community partners to engage with area students with diverse, out-of-school programming in areas like art, science, technology, engineering, math, sports and more. This varied, holistic approach fosters confidence and lifelong learning, while also developing career and college readiness skills. Programming is focused to help students meet state and local academic standards in core areas like reading and math, and also supports the work of caring adults in young people’s lives, recognizing they play a crucial role in their student’s ongoing academic, social and emotional success.

Clarinda Solberg, United Way’s 21CCLC director, says this funding will bring lasting impact to Central Minnesota. “Not only will these grant dollars support young people during out-of-school time, but will be strategically invested to support a larger vision of equitable educational outcomes for our region.”

United Way of Central Minnesota’s Vice President of Education, Amy Trombley, adds that the newest grant award is the result 21CCLC’s foundational work and much local support. “We have a phenomenal community that cares about young people. This wouldn’t be possible without the success of our first cohort.”

St. Cloud Area Schools Superintendent Laurie Putnam says the award is a vital part of student success for ISD742. “Many students need more time and support than schools offer. This grant provides those opportunities. It allows true partnership to build networks of creativity, collaboration and communication. These benefit us all.”

Sauk Rapids-Rice Public Schools Superintendent Brad Bergstrom agrees. “This funding will help us to continue to find ways to support the academic, social and emotional needs of students. We are thankful for the United Way, as this would not be possible without their amazing support.”

As an effective, collaborative community learning center, United Way of Central Minnesota’s 21CCLC site engages schools and Central Minnesota with a common goal: to tap into young people’s potential, giving learners the opportunity to succeed, regardless of race, ethnicity, zip code or circumstance. The award allows United Way of Central Minnesota to continue work with government agencies, school districts, community partners, caring adults and learners, in shaping a community where all of us are able to thrive.



Anna Marie’s goal is to raise $2.4 million in the “Building Hope” campaign.

Time flies when you’re making the world a better place. In 2017, Anna Marie’s Alliance kicked off a huge fundraising undertaking to appeal to the community, local businesses and other resources, with the goal of remodeling and adding on to its facility.

Why? Because Anna Marie’s Alliance provides women who are experiencing domestic abuse and their children with a safe place to stay and the resources they need. Each year, its 36-bed emergency shelter houses nearly 500 area women and their children as they flee domestic violence.

With two of the four phases of the project complete and $3 million raised to pay for construction and associated costs, Anna Marie’s is now launching the final two phases of the project. Their goal is to raise an additional $2.5 million.

Click here to learn more or to donate to this excellent campaign.



Commercial Realty Solutions, founded in 2009 in Buffalo, Minnesota, assists clients with the sale and acquisition of businesses and the buying, selling and leasing of commercial real estate. The company, which opened its St. Cloud office in 2019, currently has 155 listings throughout Central Minnesota.

Learn much more about CRS in this recent feature from the GSDC’s St. Cloud Shines website.



Listen to Keynote Speaker, Jaco Boovens and Founder Executive Director, Cynthia Terlouw Kvistad share what we can do to support the restoration of women who are survivors of human trafficking.

Register at

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Contact Our Staff Team

NeTia Bauman, CEcD, CEO & President | 320.437.1430

Leslie Dingmann, CecD, EDFP, Business Development Director | 320.493.9003

Gail Cruikshank, Talent Director | 320.260.6775

Tammy Campion, Communications & Program Specialist | 320.252.5185