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about our funders

Major funding for the Initiators Fellowship comes from a host of regional and statewide friends who believe in linking good people and good causes through diverse economic development opportunities.

The Initiative Foundation and its Minnesota Initiative Foundation partners would like to thank the following organizations for their vision and their belief in elevating promising entrepreneurs and their socially impactful ventures.
Special thanks to Granite Partners, a mission-driven private investment and holding company combining long-term business growth with a dedication to community well-being, for working in concert with the Initiative Foundation to develop the Initiators Fellowship program and for providing initial and ongoing funding that supports the program. Since its founding in 2002, Granite Partners’ ownership approach has delivered significant benefits for stakeholders while creating far-reaching impact in Minnesota — and across the globe. The Granite Partners office is located in St. Cloud, Minn., with a satellite office at the Calhoun Beach Club in Minneapolis.
Since its founding in 1953, the St. Paul-based Bush Foundation has supported organizations and people who think bigger and differently about solutions to problems in their communities. Through grants and strategic investments in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and the 23 Native nations that share the same geography, the Bush Foundation works to inspire and support creative problem-solving. Strategic focuses include community creativity, education, Native nation-building and social business ventures.

The McKnight Foundation, a Minnesota-based family foundation, advances a more just, creative, and abundant future where people and planet thrive. Established in 1953, the McKnight Foundation is deeply committed to advancing climate solutions in the Midwest; building an equitable and inclusive Minnesota; and supporting the arts and culture in Minnesota, neuroscience, and international crop research.

For more than 40 years Sourcewell, formerly the National Joint Powers Alliance, has helped government, education and nonprofits work more efficiently through nationally solicited contract purchasing solutions. In Minnesota, Sourcewell offers regionally focused programs for government and education members who comprise an area known as Region 5. Their overarching mission is to build valued relationships and deliver innovative solutions with integrity, exceeding the expectations of members.
Additional support comes from an anonymous donor.