Minneapolis is set to host Super Bowl LII on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018, at U.S. Bank Stadium. It’s only the second Super Bowl in Minneapolis, which previously hosted Super Bowl XXVI in 1992 at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, which was torn down in 2013. History makers understand how to create something distinctive and different. And Minneapolis is replete with a population of distinctive change agents.
Hosting a sweet 16 years later, Minnesota’s Twin Cities (Minneapolis and sister city Saint Paul) are on the world stage yet again and these local thought leaders and entrepreneurs are gearing up to showcase their proverbial “table of brotherhood,” which is exemplified by their success in diversity and inclusiveness, advancing technology and innovation, humanity, and curating a cultural evolution in art and music. We’ve chronicled these accomplishments throughout this inaugural issue of rolling out Minneapolis. As the leadership in the Twin Cities makes modern history, we couldn’t just sit on the sidelines and watch them work because it’s one of the greatest movements of the times.
Recently, my wife and I flew to the Twin Cities and participated in the first-ever African American authors symposium, the Minnesota Black Author’s Expo. There, I had a vision beyond my greatest expectation, as the entire community of authors was friendly, warm and welcoming. The expertise they shared about how to win in publishing and where the opportunities were was matchless. I later learned this forward-thinking spirit extends throughout the locale.
These urban centers welcome and embrace a multicultural generation, professionally develop the millennial populace and captivate neighboring major cities. It’s all due to the achievements of business and community leaders who understand the value of minority and women’s leadership, address generational turnover, and bridge the generation gap between the Baby Boomer who is departing, the Gen-Xer who is ascending and the millennial who is entering the workforce. These businesses have prioritized a corporate imperative, diversity and inclusion, and implemented strategies for the generations to coexist for continued growth and appeal to a wider customer base.
A promising example of the diversity and inclusion is the election of a Historically Black College and University graduate, Saint Paul’s Mayor Melvin W. Carter III, a Florida A&M University alum who has a passion for civic engagement and affordable housing. A husband and father of five, he’s the founder of Saint Paul Promise Neighborhood, a community collaboration to level the playing field for low-income kids and families.
We seek to both highlight and applaud this and also the progress of cultural institutions. For example, the local YWCAs have been dedicated to serving women and girls in the areas of education, health and wellness, and now they’ve expanded their mission to include racial justice and public policy, Further, the Bush Foundation “invests in great ideas,” assisting local businesses and entrepreneurs.
There are so many great profiles of Minnesotans in this issue who personify diversity, inclusion and equity, it’s a collectors’ item of sorts, a memento much like the Super Bowl ring is to fans of those who are making major plays on and off the field of dreams.
For more, Minnesotans can get ready to join rolling out for RIDE LAB (Rolling Out. Innovation. Digital. Entertainment. Learn. About. Business), our signature summit filled with workshops aimed at inspiring innovation and leadership. It will take place at U.S. Bank. Don’t miss your chance to meet a leader of talent acquisition, Ken Charles, U.S. Bank’s senior vice president of global talent, who shares how fulfilling it is to connect talent with opportunity. During RIDE LAB, we will have a host of talent managers and executives ready to connect with eager professionals and grow their talent pool.