Tim Connell is retiring from the Southwest Initiative Foundation Board of Directors after six-and-a-half years of service. Tim’s leadership has guided Southwest Initiative Foundation through exciting and meaningful change.
“As a retired district judge, Tim’s view ‘from the bench’ was invaluable as the foundation stepped into new territory, especially beginning Grow Our Own. Tim presents useful insights in a straightforward way. He’s never afraid to ask the hard questions, challenge the status quo and vote his values,” said SWIF President and CEO Diana Anderson.
On the board, Tim has served as secretary. He also chaired the Governance and Nominating Committee, bringing exceptional new candidates to the board and ensuring all board members felt equipped to do their duties through orientation sessions, phone calls, coffee or a round of golf.
“It was wonderful to get to visit so many places in southwest Minnesota while serving on the board. Just seeing the vibrancy of the communities was terrific, and meeting the entrepreneurs who are willing to take on risk and start a business,” Tim said. “I see SWIF continuing to grow and address critical issues. There are always changes in focus over time, and the ability of the foundation to adapt is really important.”
Tim brought a remarkable history to the foundation, starting nearly two decades ago when his wife Connie served on the board. Together they were the very first Growing Home Circle members, leading the way to a new approach that has built Southwest Initiative Foundation’s General Endowment and positioned the foundation—and region—for long-term success.
Tim and Connie live in Luverne, where Tim was born and raised, graduating from Luverne High School in 1967. The couple were high school sweethearts. He was the Rock County Attorney and was in private practice for 11 years before he was appointed Judge of the Fifth Judicial District, Rock County, a position he held for 35 years.
Tim remains very active in the community and has served on many boards. He is currently on the Luverne Initiatives for Tomorrow (LIFT) board and the board of Southwest Minnesota Regional Legal Services. Tim cares deeply about his home, and it’s a love that extends from Luverne to all the 18 counties of our region.
We know Tim’s history with the foundation will continue and we’re grateful to have experienced his knowledge and positive attitude as a leader on our Board of Directors.