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2019 Prosperity Initiative Cohort

SMIF is seeking 15 businesses to participate in a 2020 Prosperity Initiative cohort. Past Prosperity Initiative graduates are also encouraged to apply to be part of this program again and take their business to a new level. Apply by January 29!

The Prosperity Initiative promotes inclusive entrepreneurship and minority-owned business growth in southern Minnesota. The program provides regular education, coaching, and business resources to minority and new immigrant business owners in SMIF’s 20-county region.

Prosperity Initiative clients receive the following to help turn business dreams into reality:

  • Support from a professional business coach to set goals and work towards achieving them.
  • Access to marketing assistance, Quick Books training, financial planning, tax preparation, and more.
  • Business planning software, website hosting and design services, and other crucial business tools.
SMIF will be hosting a business plan workshop on January 15, 2020 from noon to 2:30 p.m. to help individuals create a business plan for their company. Those interested in the Prosperity Initiative are encouraged to attend so that you have a well-developed business plan to include in your application. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to Jennifer Heien, Grants Coordinator, at or 507-214-7040 by January 13, 2020.

“When I started this business, my tagline was, ‘The genesis of all change is awareness.’ I am now more aware of how far I came and aware of my abilities and the possibilities that lay ahead. SMIF’s support through the Prosperity Initiative has been priceless. I wanted to do this business so that I could help others, support myself and still spend time with my children. I’m doing all of those things today and more. You’ve allowed me to take my passions and dreams and turn them into something really amazing. I never stopped dreaming, but now I’m able to dream in color again.”

– Prosperity Initiative graduate

Angel Uribe, owner, Stages of Change Center (Mankato)

To learn more about becoming a Prosperity Initiative client contact Pam Bishop at 507-214-7013 or

Prosperity Initiative client spotlight: West Oakland Auto

The Prosperity Initiative is a collaborative program of Southern Minnesota Initiative FoundationRegion Nine Development Commission and Faribault Diversity Coalition and is made possible by generous funding from CliftonLarsonAllen Foundation, Krahmer Law Firm, PLC (Fred W. Krahmer and Michelle Krahmer), McKnight FoundationMinnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development and Wells Fargo.

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West Oakland Auto (Austin), Prosperity Initiative graduate