Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque to host rural leadership summit on “Brain Gain”

EDGEWOOD, Iowa— The Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque (CFGD) in partnership with the Foundation for the Future of Delaware County and the Iowa Council of Foundations will be hosting a rural summit for community leaders May 16 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Edgewood Locker Events Center in Edgewood.

Welcome Home: Attracting and Engaging New and Returning Residents” will feature keynote speaker Ben Winchester, a rural sociologist and senior research fellow for the University of Minnesota Extension’s Center for Community Vitality, and a panel of local community leaders to discuss ways communities are welcoming and integrating newcomers.

The summit is a response from CFGD to a growing interest in rural communities to attract newcomers. 

“People want to make their communities attractive for young families,” said Jason Neises, community development coordinator at CFGD. “This is a way for us to support our rural communities and give them tools to remain vital and active. We want to help local leaders to tell the story that these are good places to raise a family and to build the assets they need to maintain and improve the quality of life.”

Topics include:

  • Changing the narrative from “brain drain” to “brain gain”
  • Creating spaces for hometowners and newcomers to engage
  • Methods for reviving small town leadership and
  • Creating a plan to drive community progress

MJ Smith, director of affiliates at CFGD hopes that attendees will be inspired to help change the rural narrative from “Get out while you can.” to “Great things can and already do happen here”.

“In any community's vision of itself, it is what we say and believe that will come true,” said Smith. “I hope that the leaders who attend this program will be inspired to look at their community and start seeing the good and the potential that small towns in Northeast Iowa have to be places where families can thrive and succeed.”

To learn more or pre-register visit www.dbqfoundation.org/welcome-home or call 563.588.2700.

Press Contact

Jeff Danna
Communications Manager
jeff@dbqfoundation.org
563.588.2700

About Us
Founded in 2002, the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque strengthens communities and inspires giving. We are dedicated to improving the quality of life throughout Northeast Iowa by serving donors, making grants to local nonprofit organizations, and providing community leadership through convening and collaboration. Guided by the values of integrity, equity and inclusion, collaboration, excellence and innovation, we seek to ensure a vibrant and inclusive Greater Dubuque region with resources and opportunity for all.

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