This month, Jodi Maertens will leave her position as our Youth & Family Officer to expand a small business – 507 Five Zero Seven LLC – she started with her business partner. We’re grateful for her leadership in southwest Minnesota over the last eight years!
Jodi combined knowledge and experience to help make good things happen across our region for youth and families. She graduated from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., with a bachelor’s degree in child and family studies and is a licensed parent educator, and she and her husband are raising two little girls.
Over the years, Jodi had the opportunity to connect with many amazing early childhood professionals across the region, state and nation. Jodi worked with our ECI, Thrive, dental, child care, Prek-3rd grade alignment, literacy and 2Gen programs – and had the opportunity to come up with so many innovative ideas and opportunities to lift people up. From thousands of books into children’s hands to thousands of dollars invested in child care providers, she has truly worked to make a difference in the lives of our youngest. She has recognized that each corner of our region, each community, has its own assets and unique ways to build upon them. It has been so much fun to work with Jodi and watch her grow!
So, while we are sad to see her go, we know that in working for such an entrepreneurial organization, sometimes people catch that entrepreneurial “bug.” Her new endeavors will continue to help others grow – a value she cherishes and shines in doing. As we say goodbye, we know that it is not farewell. A fitting quote from Winnie the Pooh, “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”
Nancy Fasching, Vice President of Community Impact
My time with SWIF has helped lift me to a place where I am ready to soar into this new adventure. Working for such an amazing organization, one that helps businesses and communities grow and thrive, cheers on the entrepreneurial spirit, and creates spaces where dreams can come true, has been an experience I will always carry with me. I am humbled to have been part of this organization and hope to continue to stay connected in the future.