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Posts tagged: Colleen Landkamer

Rural Cooperative Development Support Helps Start Harvest Moon Local Foods Co-op in Minnesota

Harvest Moon Local Foods Co-op manager David Giedd shows a selection of locally grown meats to USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer.

Harvest Moon Local Foods Co-op manager David Giedd shows a selection of locally grown meats to USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer.

Like any new venture, there are a number of obstacles to overcome when starting a local foods cooperative. The fact that people in Long Lake, Minn. chose to start a cooperative during the economic downturn in 2007-08 was just another of those obstacles. Read more »

Under Secretary Highlights USDA Job Promotion Efforts in Albert Lea, Minnesota

USDA Support helps Mrs. Gerry’s, an Albert Lea, Minn. Business grow and create jobs. ( From left its Colleen Landkamer, USDA Rural Development Minn. State Director; Chad Vogt, Mrs. Gerry’s, Inc.; and Under Secretary Dallas Tonsager.

USDA Support helps Mrs. Gerry’s, an Albert Lea, Minn. Business grow and create jobs. ( From left its Colleen Landkamer, USDA Rural Development Minn. State Director; Chad Vogt, Mrs. Gerry’s, Inc.; and Under Secretary Dallas Tonsager.

What started as a small operation almost 40 years ago has grown into major contributor to the economy in Albert Lea, Minn.

Mrs. Gerry’s Kitchen, Inc., started on Dec. 4, 1973, in a building that occupied 1,100 square feet. Today, Mrs. Gerry’s is adding a 36,500 square-foot addition that will bring its building to over 100,000 square feet and help meet growing customer demand for its real (no flaky stuff here) mashed potatoes and other products. Read more »

USDA Support Helps Build Feed Mill, Boosts Small Businesses in Southwestern Minnesota

Kyle Oldre, Rock County Administrator speaks at the dedication as State Director Colleen Landkamer and other dignitaries look on.

Kyle Oldre, Rock County Administrator speaks at the dedication as State Director Colleen Landkamer and other dignitaries look on.

As construction crews were busy putting the finishing touches on New Vision Co-op’s new grain elevator and feed mill in Magnolia, Minn., last month, USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer and other area leaders visited the site to highlight the economic impact of the project.

“This investment by USDA means jobs and economic development opportunities,” Landkamer said. Read more »

USDA and Habitat for Humanity Partnership Builds Home for Rural Minnesota Family

A unique partnership between USDA Rural Development and Habitat for Humanity of Douglas County, Minn., (HFHDC) has helped make Cassandra Braford a proud new homeowner.

Braford, a waitress, recently moved into her home in Alexandria, Minn., with her children, Ramsey and Riyada, and her mother, Jean. The home was financed through USDA Rural Development’s direct home loan program. Braford built her home in partnership with HFHDC. Read more »

USDA Rural Development Hosts Rural Energy for America Program Roundtable in Minnesota

Since 2009, USDA Rural Development has helped 512 rural small businesses and farmers install renewable energy systems or make energy efficiency improvements through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).

Senator Al Franken and Minn. Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer participate in a roundtable meeting on the USDA Rural Energy For America Program.

Senator Al Franken and Minn. Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer participate in a roundtable meeting on the USDA Rural Energy For America Program.

On Tuesday, April 10, about 40 of those farmers and small business owners gathered in Mankato, Minn., to discuss the REAP program during a roundtable featuring Senator Al Franken and USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer. Read more »

Rural Energy for America Program Helps a Minnesota Lumber Company Cut Energy Costs

Freeborn Lumber Company owner John Miller and USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer inside the room that operates Freeborn’s geothermal system.  The system was installed with support from USDA Rural Development.

Freeborn Lumber Company owner John Miller and USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer inside the room that operates Freeborn’s geothermal system. The system was installed with support from USDA Rural Development.

John Miller got the call at 12:45 a.m. on Sept. 7, 2007.

Freeborn Lumber Company – the business John’s grandfather bought in 1946 and John purchased from his father in 1986 – was burning to the ground.  Less than 30 minutes later, the nearly 100-year-old building was destroyed. Lightning struck a phone line next to a gas line and that was it. Firefighters arrived less than five minutes after getting called, but there was nothing they could do. Read more »