Moving Bemidji Forward Together

Whether working, visiting, playing or living here, the Bemidji Alliance partners have got you covered.

Downtown Bemidji Arch with cars driving by

At its core, the objective of the Bemidji Alliance is to help our region set its strategic direction and develop a collective plan of action for regional growth. As an umbrella to the Bemidji Area Chamber of Commerce, Visit Bemidji, the Bemidji Downtown Alliance and Greater Bemidji, the Bemidji Alliance will work with the each of the four organizations, identifying opportunities to work together and support each other.

Downtown sidewalk by shops

The creation of the Bemidji Alliance partnership does not change the importance of each of our individual organizations. The partnership will take a "noses in, fingers out" approach, encouraging collaboration and alignment yet ensuring each organization has the freedom to operate and fulfill its mission. Each organization will continue to have its own board, leadership and staff. The Bemidji Area Chamber of Commerce, Visit Bemidji, the Bemidji Downtown Alliance and Greater Bemidji all have had a rich history and together will have a bright future.

Professional people discussing in groups

By partnering in the Bemidji Alliance, the Bemidji Area Chamber of Commerce, Visit Bemidji, the Bemidji Downtown Alliance and Greater Bemidji are prepared to lead the way. We are committed to aligning our organizations long term to benefit our community. Through the Bemidji Alliance, collaboration will become part of the DNA of our organizations and community.

Bemidji Alliance Board Members

The Bemidji Alliance is governed by an all-volunteer leadership council representing the family of organizations. The Leadership Council acts as stewards of both the organizations involved as well as the broader greater Bemidji community.

Executive Committee

Gary Johnson
CEO, Paul Bunyan

Dana Lee
Visit Bemidji
Owner, AmericInn

Mike Mulry
Visit Bemidji
Director of Corporate Relations
& Strategic Partnerships,
Bemidji State University Alumni & Foundation

Caralee Nowak
Bemidji Area Chamber
Products and Marketing Manager,
Pinnacle Marketing Group

Ashley Johnson
Bemidji Area Chamber
Senior Development Officer,
Northwest MN Foundation

Annie Butler-Ricks
Bemidji Downtown Alliance
Director of Community Impact,
United Way of Bemidji

Carl Johnson
Bemidji Downtown Alliance
PVP of Business Banking,
Security State Bank USA

Barb Smith
Greater Bemidji
Regional President,
Riverwood Bank

Jared Echternach
Greater Bemidji
General Manager,
Beltrami Electric Cooperative

Bemidji Alliance Leadership Council

Rita Albrecht
City of Bemidji

Ryan Baer
Senior VP,
Security Bank USA

Pete Aube

Jim Bensen
President Emeritus,
Bemidji State University

Jason Brodina
Owner, Choice Therapy

Kevin Erpelding
Owner, Corner Garage Sales and Rental, Blackduck

Jake Ellefson
Area Manager,
Otter Tail Power Company

Mary Eaton
The Idea Circle Inc.

Bob Fitzgerald
Director of Operations,
Kraus-Anderson Construction

Jess Frenzel
Controller, Knife River Materials

Shelly Geerdes
CEO, Pinnacle Marketing Group

Faith Hensrud
President, Bemidji State University

Tim Lutz
Bemidji School District

Steve Hill
Hill’s Plumbing & Heating

Erik Hokuf
Owner, AirCorps Aviation

Mike Karvakko
President, Karvakko

Gretchen Knutson
VP, Delta Dental of Minnesota

Jim Lucachick
Beltrami County Commissioner

Bryan Nermoe
President, Sanford Health
of Northern Minnesota

Mitch Rautio
Owner, Specklebelly LLC

Micah Ricke
Director of Product Development,
TEAM Industries

Phil Verchota
Vice President,
Deerwood Bank

Hugh Welle
Vice President,
First National Bank Bemidji

Karen Weller
Executive Director,
Bemidji Regional Airport