We work with our communities to identify and develop leadership on important regional initiatives—as well as leaders who will move our area forward on these and other issues.

For decades, the foundation has collaborated with local and regional stakeholders to identify needs and opportunities as well as solutions and approaches that can move our area forward in innovative ways.

Our most recent work includes:

Unity Fund, a community-led effort to build, strengthen and create opportunities for advancement in African Heritage communities through action, engagement and education. 

Ready North, a collection of agencies and resources in a central location, allows convenient use by the community to prepare for, respond to and recover from disasters.

Opportunity Rising, an effort to identify systemic inequities and take action to ensure that every adult and child in Duluth and Superior has an opportunity to achieve full human potential.

Isidore “Izzy” Ralaingita


“If your life and your loved ones are in danger, leave everything behind. Run away,” advises Isidore “Izzy” Ralaingita.

He speaks from experience. Growing up in Madagascar, Ralaingita witnessed the impact of a devastating natural disaster firsthand. The experience changed his life.

Other thought leadership initiatives include:

The Scott Anderson Leadership Foundation provides values-based leadership training and development opportunities for area youth.

Speak Your Peace: The Civility Project improves public discourse and effectiveness by valuing and applying civility and respect.

The Attract and Retain Young Adults Initiative helped grow the region’s population of young adults by increasing career and economic opportunities through NORTHFORCE, starting the Young Leaders Fund and enhancing quality-of-life issues.

The Knight Creative Communities Initiative highlighted human creativity as a driver of community vitality and enhanced the Twin Ports’ creative economy.

The Social Capital Benchmarking Project analyzed levels of community connectedness to build on strengths and address weaknesses.

The Soul of the Community Project analyzed levels of community connectedness in Duluth and 25 other communities nationwide to gauge economic impact.