17 Jun 2021
June 17, 2021

Jobs for Minnesotans Announces New Board Leadership

June 17, 2021

Inaugural Board Chair Nancy Norr and Founder Harry Melander to retire, Brian Hanson of APEX elected as new board chair

St. Paul, Minn. (June 17, 2021) The Jobs for Minnesotans coalition today announced the retirement of both Board Chair Nancy Norr of Minnesota Power, and coalition Founder and Board Member Harry Melander of the Minnesota Building and Construction Trades Council. The Jobs for Minnesotans board elected longstanding Board Member Brian Hanson of Area Partnership for Economic Expansion (APEX) as the new board chair.

“We are extremely grateful for Nancy’s nearly decade-long service as our inaugural board chair and her career-long commitment to the advancement of responsible industry and job growth in Minnesota,” said Doug Loon, Jobs for Minnesotans board member and Minnesota Chamber of Commerce president. “While we are confident in and look forward to the coalition’s future under Brian’s leadership, we will deeply miss Nancy’s passion and determination on the board, which has inspired so many to advocate for sustainable and prosperous middle-class jobs here in Minnesota.”

“Harry was critical in the formation of the Jobs for Minnesotans coalition, co-founded in 2012 as a unique partnership between his organization and mine,” said Loon. “Harry helped bring our organizations together to advocate in solidarity for increased private investment in construction and infrastructure throughout Minnesota.”

Newly elected Board Chair Brian Hanson is APEX’s president and CEO and has been part of the Jobs for Minnesotans board since it was founded. His work has contributed to several significant northeast Minnesota regional business expansions, retention and attraction projects in industries including mining, engineering and manufacturing.

Additionally, new Minnesota Building and Construction Trades Council President Joe Fowler will replace Harry Melander on the Jobs for Minnesotans board. He continues to serve as the business manager for LiUNA Laborers Local 563.

“I am honored to lead this incredibly important coalition. There’s a lot of work to be done to secure a thriving future for our state,” said Brian Hanson. “The responsible industries we support have the potential to bring tremendous economic impact in the years ahead to revitalize and strengthen Minnesota’s economy in both rural and urban areas, all while protecting the surrounding environment.”

Through modern technology and global industry best practices, Jobs for Minnesotans was founded under the belief that it’s possible for responsible industries to both protect surrounding water and environment while advancing job-creating projects here in Minnesota. Today, these opportunities are the sustainable development of new mining and energy projects. The citizens of Minnesota represented by our organizations deserve the opportunity for responsible industries to proceed through the robust environmental review process as outlined by law and potentially bring high-quality, family-sustaining jobs to the state.

About Jobs for Minnesotans

Jobs for Minnesotans, a coalition representing business, labor and communities, supports statewide opportunities for prosperity and middle-class jobs from sustainable natural resource development in Minnesota. The organization is committed to the principle that our state can preserve both job opportunities and the environment for future generations. Jobs for Minnesotans was co-founded in 2012 by the Minnesota Building and Construction Trades Council representing 70,000 workers and the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce representing 2,300 members and 500,000 employees. For more information, visit jobsforminnesotans.org, follow @JobsforMN on Twitter and find the coalition on Facebook.com/Jobs4MN.


Media Contact: Brian Hanson, Board Chair