• Engage Leaders: “Building a Better Tomorrow” at Blattner Company
  • Grow Business: Congratulations gener8tor!
  • Expand Talent: Internships – Proven Successful Recruitment Tool
  • Shape Tomorrow: St. Cloud Shines Updates + Shine On
  • Insights and Inspirations: TED Talk: How racial bias works — and how to disrupt it
  • Coming Up: You’re Invited – Housing conversation with MHA on August 12

Engage Leaders: “Building a Better Tomorrow” at Blattner Company

Just west of St. Cloud in Avon, Minnesota is a 114-year-old company that is committed to building a better tomorrow. Blattner, once a heavy-civil construction company building dams, mines, bridges and roads, now focuses on doing one thing better than anyone else – renewable energy.  Blattner is the leading installer of utility-scale wind and solar renewable energy in North America and employs thousands of people on job sites nationwide and 400-plus team members at the corporate office in Avon.

To date, the company has built 50,000 megawatts of renewable energy on more than 450 wind and solar energy projects. What’s 50,000 megawatts? Enough clean energy to power 14 million homes or 1 billion light bulbs for a year. That kind of positive energy and impact really unifies the people who work for the company. Enough so that they were recognized as a 2021 Best Places to Work by the Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal.

Employees at Blattner pride themselves in several key areas that they believe make Blattner a great place to work: culture, character, community and clean energy.

Culture is cultivated at Blattner by employees who passionately live out company values and serve a common purpose. Each employee has a copy of the “Blattner Purpose, Basics and Values” at their desk as their reference of how they are empowered and encouraged to work.

“When our people are at their best, we are at our best,” is a phrase commonly heard at Blattner. This championing of outstanding character shines through in how teams collaborate, innovate and work together for the greater good.

Community and caring for each other is a common theme at Blattner. “We believe we have a responsibility to make and leave our communities better where we live and work,” Christine Huston, Communications Director said, “This approach applies to our Minnesota communities as well as the communities across the country where our teams build renewable energy projects.”

“Ultimately, it comes down to the people,” said Nik Maeder, Vice President of Solar, “We can’t do great things without great people, and we have bunch of great people who work for Blattner.”

Grow Business

Congratulations gener8tor!

GSDC congratulates our partners at gener8tor for landing the #35 spot on Fast Company’s 2021 100 Best Workplaces for Innovators List. Organizations selected are those that demonstrate deep commitment to encourage innovation at all levels. Winners are chosen from a variety of industries, including computer science, biotech, consumer packaged goods, nonprofit, education, financial services, cybersecurity, and engineering. See the complete list HERE.

GSDC, along with 18 business sponsors, brought gener8tor programming to the St. Cloud region in beginning in 2019. Sponsors include, Centra Care, Great North Ventures, Greater St. Cloud Development Corp., Granite Logistics, Central McGowan, Granite Equity Partners, Kensington Bank, Microbiologics, Moss & Barnett, PCI, College of St. Benedict St. John’s University, Schlenner Wenner & Co., St. Cloud Technical and Community College, Park Industries, Xcel Energy Foundation, St. Cloud State University, DeZurik Apco Hilton and GeoComm.


Expand Talent

Internships – Proven Successful Recruitment Tool

Does your organization offer an internship experience? 

If not, you are missing out on a proven effective recruitment tool. 

 Below are six compelling reasons to consider offering an internship. 

  • Build a Steady Pipeline of Young, Qualified Talent
  • Train Prospective Candidates to your Liking
  • Improve Retention of New Hires
  • Foster Relationships in the Community with high schools, universities, workforce centers and community organizations
  • Develop leadership skills in Existing Employees
  • Gain a Fresh Perspective

 St. Cloud State School of Public Affairs shares some impressive data supporting the advantage of internship opportunities. 

Want to offer an internship but don’t know where to start? 

GSDC provides an extensive tool kit along with templates to support your creation of a program for your organization. https://www.greaterstcloud.com/internships/ 

Connect with our local education institutions to learn how you can connect with students ready to put their education into the work environment. 


Shape Tomorrow

St. Cloud Shines Update + Shine On

Our regional marketing campaign, St. Cloud Shines, continues to perform exceedingly well, and we are glad to see it continue to show off what makes our region shine! Below are some metrics from quarter 2.

  • 57,386 people reached on Facebook + Instagram from organic (new) stories featuring stories, people, businesses, etc. in Greater St. Cloud (this is nearly 12k more than Q1!).
  • June 2021 had year-to-date record highs for Individual Post Reach, Engagements, and Total Page Reach.
  • Top 3 stories for the quarter: Wags on Wheels, Brothers United, & Pineview Park BMX

Sign up now for the monthly Shine On email – a monthly note that includes recent Shines Stories, events, spotlights on our sponsors, and more!

Subscribe today!


Insights & Inspirations

TED Talk: How racial bias works – and how to disrupt it

“Our brains create categories to make sense of the world, recognize patterns and make quick decisions. But this ability to categorize also exacts a heavy toll in the form of unconscious bias. In this powerful talk, psychologist Jennifer L. Eberhardt explores how our biases unfairly target Black people at all levels of society — from schools and social media to policing and criminal justice — and discusses how creating points of friction can help us actively interrupt and address this troubling problem.”

Watch and listen here.

Save the date for St. Cloud’s TEDx Event on Thursday, October 14!


Coming Up

You’re Invited – Housing Conversation with MHA on August 12

On August 12th, the Minnesota Multi Housing Association (MHA) (www.mmha.com) will be hosting their annual “Shaping the Future” conference in St. Cloud https://www.mmha.com/Education/Greater-Minnesota-Programs/Shaping-the-Future.  As part of a series of meetings around the state over the summer, MHA leaders would appreciate the opportunity to meet with community leaders while they are in town.

The intent of this visit is to listen to the housing needs of your community, and to develop relationships with local leaders to lend expertise in helping address any local issues on which MHA can have an impact. As the state-wide association representing rental property owners, managers, developers and product service companies, MHA is hoping to learn more about the housing market in the St. Cloud area and would appreciate hearing from you about what the housing needs are in the area and how we might work together to address them. The MHA team is also planning to meet with local elected officials and housing providers during the day and would really like to hear from business leaders as well.

We invite you to meet with the MHA team at 9:00 am at the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation offices on August 12th for this conversation. To attend please rsvp to Marty McDonough, MHA’s Director of Government Affairs at marty.mcdonough@mmha.com by August 11th.


Contact Our Staff Team

Patti Gartland, President
pgartland@greaterstcloud.com | 320-260-2442

Leslie Dingmann, Business Development Director
ldingmann@greaterstcloud.com | 320-493-9003

Gail Cruikshank, Talent Director 
gcruikshank@greaterstcloud.com | 320-260-6775

Amelia Barkley, Communications & Program Specialist 
abarkley@greaterstcloud.com | 320-292-9296