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Minot Women Leaders Raise Over $10,000 for Community

MINOT – May 15 was a “Day of Giving” for participants of the Women’s Leadership Program (WLP). Armed with $100 in seed money each, this group of 13 women was tasked to grow the funds in a philanthropic project of their choice for the Minot community. They broke off into smaller teams and had six weeks to find a cause and determine the best way to give back.

On May 15, the groups headed out to deliver their surprise donations to a variety of organizations. Recipients included Souris Valley United Way’s Backpack Buddies program, Souris Valley United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library program, Trinity Cancer Care Center’s Look Good Feel Better program, Tie with Title, Sources of Strength for Glenburn and Minot schools, and the Minot Prairie Quilt Guild. In total, the groups gave $10,417.43 in cash donations and in-kind contributions to area organizations.

With a variety of causes and individual skillsets, each team took a different approach using their own unique methods to pay it forward in the community. Kelly Barnett and Whitney Stephenson focused on raising funds for the Minot Prairie Quilt Guild and raised three times the organization's annual budget. The Minot Prairie Quilt Guild is dedicated to the advancement of quilting, offering quilts to other organizations such as the hospitals, nursing homes and the Domestic Violence Crisis Center.

Trinity Cancer Care Center’s Look Good Feel Better program received both in-kind and monetary donations thanks to the efforts of Kelly Matalka and Molly Regan. The mission is to improve the self-image and appearance of women undergoing cancer treatments through complimentary group and virtual beauty sessions creating a sense of support, confidence, courage and community. The pair raised awareness to the of lack of supplies like wigs and cosmetics which are in high demand.

“Since 2012, the Women’s Leadership Program has raised nearly $351,000 of cash and in-kind donations for organizations across the state. I’m extremely proud and impressed with what the women are able to do for their communities in such a short amount of time,” said Deidre Hillman, Program Director of North Dakota Women’s Business Center (NDWBC), a program of CTB. “A few of this year’s participants live outside the Minot area. They worked hard to ensure that the organization they selected would directly impact their home communities. For example, Kelly Barnett of Minot, and Whitney Stephenson or Williston, selected the Minot Prairie Quilt Guild, which is based in Minot but working with a school in Williston to make weighted blankets for school children in that community. A win-win!”

The Women’s Leadership Program is a six-month program dedicated to expanding the professional, personal, community, and health leadership skills for women of all ages. The program will wrap with a graduation social on June 20, at the Grand Hotel in Minot. The public is invited to attend and can purchase tickets to the luncheon at

CTB operates the North Dakota Women’s Business Center (ND WBC), which is part of a national network of more than 100 centers offering one-on-one business counseling, training, networking, workshops, technical assistance, and mentoring to women entrepreneurs on many business development topics, including but not limited to business startup, financial management, marketing, and procurement. Specific ND WBC programming opportunities include the Women’s Leadership Program, the Women’s Business Summit, the North Dakota Woman Owned Business Certification, and the North Dakota Leading Ladies Luncheons.