Special Projects
Supports the planning, design, construction, management and implementation of programs for a homeless shelter in Bemidji, MN.
Support for firearms training, marksmanship programs and public shooting range development in the Greater Bemidji Area.
Help support this project to develop a playground that will provide healthy recreational opportunities for children with and without disabilities.
Make your mark! Strengthen culture and community with a gift to Watermark Art Center’s new building campaign!
Red River Valley Emerging Leadership


The Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program is filled with opportunities for rural leaders to develop and expand their leadership skills.

The program strives to empower people to make a difference in this region by their involvement in their communities taking active roles in public policy issues, and serving in leadership positions at varying levels of government.

VISION: The Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program envisions a region where people take responsibility for maintaining and enhancing the quality of life for families and communities.

MISSION: The Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program exists to create and sustain a network of community leaders focusing on agriculture and natural resources issues.

GOALS: The Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program will provide

  • Opportunities for individuals to develop their leadership potential
  • A structure to bring together leaders of the region to address rural issues


  • Developing an understanding of self and others
  • Strenthening skills for leadership in their community
  • Developing an understanding of legislative processes
  • Broadening understanding of complex issues
  • Building self-effacicy (belief they can make a difference)

TO LEARN MORE about the Emerging Leadership Program's history and current program participants, go to the University of Minnesota Center for Community Vitality website.



Red River Valley  Emerging Leadership Fund

Support annual programs and help to establish a permanent endowment that can help the Emerging Leadership Program to fulfill its vision of "creating a region where people take responsibility for maintaining and enhancing the quality of life for families and communities."

Donate to this fund

Please contact Jody Horntvedt, University of Minnesota Extension Service Regional Educator at (218) 463-0296 or (888) 241-4546 for more information about how you can support this program.


Comments from Participants:

“The program was an excellent investment of time in building my leadership skills and self-confidence. It helped to shape my leadership skills and how to work with other people in my community.” [Class of 1999 participant]

"The Emerging Leadership Program helped me take a look at what I can do for my community.  It gave me the confidence to take an active role in my community.” [Class of 2010 participant]

“I appreciated meeting people and learning about other community.  The program broadened my horizons, taught me to analyze problems in a different fashion, and made me believe that I can have a positive influence in my community.” [Class of 2013 participant]

Latest News
  The Northwest Minnesota Foundation aims to support community and economic development planning initiatives through its community planning grant program.  Over the last year, the foundation has issued $186,385 in discretionary grants for community planning efforts.   ...
06/26/2015 to n/a
The children of Larry Diffley established an endowed scholarship fund at Northwest Minnesota Foundation in 2014 to help aspiring pilots in the local area. Applications are now being accepted.   The scholarship was established to honor Larry Diffley’s passion for quality aviation...
05/13/2015 to n/a
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