Leadership and Civic Engagement


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Encouraging a Thriving Economy in a Rural Community

Small Town Economy - The Need to Think Outside the Box

Mike Matteson – GAIA Board Member, Owner of West Inkster Realty / Garrison Insurance, Co-Owner of 1 North Main
Tuesday, 3 p.m.
Location: 1 North Main 

Matteson will lead an open discussion of how communities need to look at their current assets and weaknesses to capitalize on the ever-changing economic climate.

Main Street Initiative and Innovate ND: Supporting Entrepreneurs and Local Businesses

Emily Brown –Community Engagement Manager, ND Dept. of Commerce; Carla Valentine –Innovate ND, ND Dept. of Commerce; Tyler Demars - IDEA Center Program Director, Center for Technology and Business
Tuesday, 4:30 p.m.
Location: Four Seasons Restaurant 

Through expert guidance from business coaches at Entrepreneurial Centers, Innovate ND provides the entrepreneurial community of North Dakota the resources needed to help turn an innovative idea into a profitable business. Learn more in this exciting session. 

Transitioning Main Street Businesses to Potential Buyers

Carrie Johnson – Personal and Family Finance Specialist, NDSU Extension
Wednesday, 8:30 a.m.
Location: S & J Hardware 

Whether you are transferring your small business to the next generation or selling it, there are many things to consider before taking the next steps. This breakout session will discuss NDSU Extension’s program to help you prepare for a positive succession experience and how to develop a plan for the businesses future.

Pop-up Shops: Reinventing Rural Retail

Chappy Windsor – Dakota Chappy, Minot and Bismarck, ND
Wednesday, 10 a.m.
Location:  KOTA Theater

Every community has an empty space that needs someone to reinvent it. Find out how to make the “pop up” shop concept work on your main street.

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