2020 Year in Review from Vicki Leaderbrand, Executive Director Rural Minnesota CEP, Inc.

17 Dec 2020

Dear Friends and Supporters,

vicki leaderbrandWith one year completed as the Executive Director I can say that I am extremely proud of the work done here at RMCEP and the incredible staff that do it! I’ve been impressed with what I’ve seen, and even more excited for what’s to come. I am honored to be a part of this organization that has demonstrated the capacity to grow, learn and adapt to meet the changing needs of our clients and communities for over 52 years!

RMCEP has accomplished much in the past year; we served nearly 5,000 participants both in person and virtually. Our staff stepped up to the challenge of providing services through technology when our normal way of services no longer met the need. We were able to do this with dedicated staff, teamwork and a strong desire to stay connected with those participants and partners that keep our communities and economies moving. Even through a pandemic, 697 youth and 1,102 adults received guided career counseling, job placements, and training resources; all while following our RMCEP COVID-19 Return to Work and Safety Plan.

2019 brought many innovative methods of service to RMCEP for our Minnesota Family Investment Program Participants and Partners. Some of the successful activities provided include; Extending an “Opportunity Bus” that offered a day of meet-and-greet at Fargo-Moorhead manufacturing companies for participants interested in hands-on manufacturing.

Through coordinating transportation and assisting to make that first real-live connection, participants were able to see what their future could look like! We also worked together to provide several training opportunities to both our clients and county partners, focusing on working through barriers, resiliency, and positive thinking.

We successfully relocated our Fergus Falls location from its long-time downtown home to a newly renovated space within the Fergus Falls M-State Campus. This has proven to be a successful move in the many opportunities it provides through co-location with higher education as well as Adult Basic Education in the same facility.

Through our work with the Regional Workforce Alliance (RWA) we are proud to have been awarded a “Best Practice” acknowledgement by the Minnesota Association of Workforce Development Boards for our development of the Inclusive Workforce Employer (I-WE) Designation. This project created a way to recognize and promote inclusive employers, reduce racial disparities and bring awareness to the value and methods of increasing workforce diversity. To-date, we are proud to be designated a I-WE along with four additional organizations in our region. RMCEP is absolutely committed to its values of Integrity, Growth, Diversity, Quality Achievement, Partnerships, Collaboration and Teamwork. These values are a part of every relationship that we make and every accomplishment that we gain. We will continue to embrace each day knowing that we are providing HOPE through the Power of Work.

Looking forward,

Vicki Leaderbrand, M.S.
Executive Director