7 Rivers Alliance - July 2016 e-Newsletter

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Dear Investors and Members,

Recently, I had the privilege of participating in wonderful collaborations and I am amazed at the power that can be harnessed when we work together.  During the past month, we held the 2016 Business and Community Wellness Summit in Decorah, Iowa.  I was impressed with the strong attendance as this was our first event in Iowa.  This event was successful because of our partnership with the Decorah Chamber of Commerce, Winneshiek County Economic Development as well as the Northeast Iowa Business Network. 

We partnered with Minnesota State College Southeast and the Winona Workforce Development Board to host our first business networking reception in Winona, Minnesota.  Once again, we had wonderful partners who helped to make the event a success.

In the last two weeks, numerous partners from throughout the region helped to provide support for our Workforce Study project that we will be launching this fall.   Thank you for your commitment to this important project.

Finally, we worked with La Crosse Downtown Mainstreet and the La Crosse Chamber of Commerce to create new promotional materials for business attraction to La Crosse and surrounding areas.

Thank you all for your support and the opportunity to work with you.  Together, we accomplish great things!


Lisa Herr
Executive Director

Healthy Turnout for Wellness Summit!


A special thanks to everyone who joined us for the 2016 Business and Community Wellness Summit! Another large thank you to all of our sponsors for making this event possible. The Business and Community Wellness Summit consisted of 19 presenters who shared their knowledge on worksite policies that promote health, the Blue Zones Project, ways to assess community and employee health needs, square foot gardening, and so many more topics.  This event brought a number of communities together so they could collaborate and brainstorm ways to make each of their own cities and companies more mindful of making the healthy choice.

To view the speakers PowerPoint Presentations CLICK HERE
Thank You For Rising Stars Under 40  Nominations!  

We are pleased to partner with The River Valley Newspaper Group to offer the 2016 Rising Stars Under 40 Program. Thank you to everyone who contributed to the Rising Stars Under 40 campaign! We had over 70 nominations representing all three states The 7 Rivers Alliance works with. These candidates display excelence The Rising Stars Under 40 will be recognized during our 2016 State of the Region event on November 16th in La Crosse.  
Winona Business Networking Reception 

On June 15th we had our first networking reception at St. Minnesota State College Southeast. This event was held in partnership with the college. There were 35 business and community leaders that attended the networking reception.  We are delighted with the turnout and look forward to hosting future networking events with other partners. 
ExporTech: Feeding the World
July 20th, August 23, and September 27

All Sessions will be held at Organic Valley
509 Organic Drive, Cashton, WI  54619

A specialized ExporTech for manufacturers in the food, beverage and agriculture industries. Three-day series will target topics including specific food laws, food labeling, market potential, sales and distribution channels, logistics, state and federal resources, and operationalizing your international plan. Dennis Lynch, a 33-year veteran of international trade, distinguished instructor, and adviser to a variety of food and agricultural firms, will be a primary presenter. Program is supported by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. 

Click here to register and learn more. 
ECO DEVO Meeting In September 

Mark your calendars! The next ECO DEVO meeting will be held this September. More information about the agenda and exact location will be sent out as the date approaches.  
When: September 28th, 2016
Time: 10:00AM - 12:00PM  
Where: La Crescent City Hall, La Crescent, MN 
2016 State of the Region 

Please join us on November 16th for our annul State of the Region Event hosted right here in downtown La Crosse! This event will have a variety of topics including a speaker from the Federal Reserve, a section on state of cyber security, and recognizing our Rising Stars Under 40 in the 7 Rivers Region.  Lunch will be included along with a designated time for networking.  Registration Opens on August 1st. Visit our website at to register! 

 November 16th, 2016                 11:00AM- 1:00PM 

  Hosted at The Court Above Main in La Crosse, WI 

Announcing WISE Program 

The 7 Rivers Alliance Secures $155,000 in Funding to Support the Launch of Regional Workforce Study 

The 7 Rivers Alliance will be working with key stakeholders to develop workforce attraction and retention strategies for entry level to the C-Suite positions. The regional talent plan will provide a blueprint for developing and strengthening internal and external employee pipelines to support current and future employers in the 7 Rivers Region.  The creation and implementation of a regional talent plan will help employers to fill jobs over the next 10 years.The 7 Rivers Alliance would like to thank the WEDC for $50,00 capacity grant to support this project 

Project Launch:   October 1, 2016               Project Completion:  September 30, 2017

To Learn more about the project CLICK HERE 

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Take The 2016 Business Survey Now! 

The 2016 Business Survey is now available on our websitePlease take the survey and share with other businesses.  Our goal is to reach 200 companies and organizations. The collected information will be used to plan future programs and advocate for policies that advance business growth and improve the vitality of our communities.

This year, we have streamlined the survey and added sector specific questions for manufacturing, healthcare, hospitality, retail and financial services.  The information collected from the survey will be collected, analyzed by county and presented at our annual State of the Region event in November 2016.

Take the survey now! 

WEDC Names New Business and Investment Attraction Director


WEDC is pleased to introduce Coleman Peiffer as the new business and investment attraction director.  Coleman will work closely with national site selectors, commercial real estate decision makers and other influences to help advance business expansion, relocation and investment in Wisconsin.  

Previously, Coleman served as WEDC's business development manager, working with business decision makers to promote Wisconsin's industry strengths and positive business climate.  He holds master's degrees in both urban planning and public administration from UW-Milwaukee, as well as a bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism form Arizona State University.  

You'll be hearing a lot more Coleman, as all future issues of INsite will come directly to your inbox form him.  If you're interested in learning more about relocating to or growing your business in Wisconsin, send him an email at


Northeast Iowa Pasture Walk to Focus on Timber Pasture Improvement

Managing timbered pastures is a challenge as landowners and tenants must balance forage production and lumber production. One northeast Iowa operation is using Environmental Quality Incentives Program and Conservation Stewardship Program contracts to develop and refine both types of production.

Paul Mohlis and his tenant Craig Allen of Allen’s Hilltop Angus near Fayette have subdivided a 100-acre pasture into paddocks of about 10 acres each, improved the stand by frost-seeding legumes, and installed a spring water development with gravity flow distribution to the paddocks.They’re hosting a pasture walk on Tuesday, July 12, to show results of their cooperative efforts. Pasture walks are informal educational programs that demonstrate key areas of pasture management, and provide resources and experts to answer questions from attendees. 

CLICK HERE to read more and get directions!

Next City Housing Solutions 



Rents are high and vacancies are low across the U.S., and not only in hot markets. A number of trends have converged to make this reality, not least of which is a cultural shift away from purchasing homes. But even as we become a nation of renters, our public policies continue to favor homeowners and the American dream of decades past. That bias hurts cities and their most vulnerable populations.

A record 49.3 percent of renters spend more than 30 percent of their income on rent. It is a new high for the affordability crisis and one that demands new solutions. This ebook provides a look at five of those solutions being tested in cities today.

CLICK HERE to download the ebook!

WisconsinBIZ 2016 Publication


The fourth annual edition of WisconsinBIZ is now available.  It's an exciting time to follow Wisconsin's business climate.  Our state is making a focused effort to attract and retain companies and talent here, including tax credits like the Qualified New Business Venture Program that rewards early stage investors and the Manufacturing and Agriculture tax cred that virtually eliminates corporate taxes on Wisconsin's two largest industries.  

CLICK HERE to view the magazine and learn more!

13th Annual WSU Engineering Scholarship Golf Outing


On Thursday, September 15th, 2016 Winona State University will be hosting the 13th Annual WSU Engineering Scholarship Golf Outing. Event proceeds are used to fund engineering scholarships at the Miller Brothers' School of Engineering at Winona State University. The entry fee includes carts, greens fees, lunch and dinner.  Location and exact prices will be announced as the date approaches.  
Call For Feedback

The Division of Energy, Housing, and Community Resources (DEHCR/Division) posted a draft Substantial Amendment 2 to the State’s 2015-2019 Consolidated Plan. ThePublic Comment Period is now open through July 19, 2016. The Consolidated Plan defines how the State will distribute federal grant funds to local governments, public and private organizations, and businesses.

Copies are available for inspection at the link below, or in person at the Division office.
To view the DRAFT of Substantial Amendment 2, Click Here.

Please submit your comments to the WEDA office by July 19, 2016. WEDA members may also email their comments directly to the Division at
Coolest Thing Made in Wisconsin Contest

Wisconsin manufacturers make some really cool things and as part of Manufacturing Month, we are in search of the Coolest Thing Made in Wisconsin!


Now accepting “coolest thing” nominations…

Here’s how the contest works…

  1. July 1 – August 31
    Anyone can submit a nomination, or you can nominate your company’s cool product! You may submit as many companies and things as you wish.
  2. September 2 – 12
    The first round of voting will narrow the field of contestants to the Top 3 Coolest Things. We’ll visit the manufacturing facility for each finalist and post behind the scenes videos showing how they are made.
  3. October 1 – 15
    Final round of voting will open.
  4. October 18
    The winner will be revealed at the WMC Foundation 
    State of Wisconsin Business event.

CLICK HERE to enter a nomination! 
Minnesota State College Southeast 

With the approval of the Board of Trustees of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, we are now a comprehensive technical and community college and can offer our students the Associate of Arts degree in Liberal Arts & Sciences.

Offering the associate of arts degree will better serve the needs of our students by increasing access to liberal arts and sciences coursework at the college level and by creating a more seamless transfer process to four-year institutions. While technical education will always be at the heart of our mission, adding the associate of arts to our offerings broadens our service to the region while strengthening the college as a whole.

CLICK HERE to

Copyright © 2015. 7 Rivers Alliance. All rights reserved.

Mailing address:
601 Seventh Street North
Suite 400
La Crosse, WI 54601

Contact Us:
Phone: 608-787-8777
Email: Info

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