Twin Cities Thinkers

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Four decades ago, an eclectic group of community leaders—CEOs, nonprofit directors, clergymen, educators, and bureaucrats—gathered for an invite-only, weeklong retreat at Itasca State Park. All the big family names were there—the Daytons, the Pillsburys, the Bemises. Eighty of the Twin Cities' most prominent citizens were all in the same room, listening to the same message.

Known as the Itasca Seminars, these annual meetings produced tangible results, including the Minnesota Business Partnership, which works to improve quality of life in Minnesota, and the UST Center for Ethical Business Cultures , which helps businesses build ethical cultures. Itasca also sparked Minnesota's charter school movement.

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Originally published: 07/14/2010, City Pages