Lakeland Currents 607 “New Leadership Demands in Rural Minnesota”
Host Ray Gildow visits with Ben Winchester from the University of Minnesota Extension Center about new leadership demands in rural Minnesota. An active social life is present in rural Minnesota. It may not look like it did 50 years ago, but people do spend significant amounts of time creating and leading civic groups to enable community betterment. Between 2000 and 2010, the Minnesota population increased 7 percent while at the same time the number of nonprofits increased 21 percent. In the most rural counties where we see a 6 percent population loss, community groups still increased by 15 percent. While this can be viewed with mixed interpretations, it does indicate a vibrancy that is not apparent using the narrative of decline. Research will be presented that shows this trend across rural Minnesota and discuss how to develop solutions for potential leadership shortages this trend points towards.