Forge North is a coalition-based effort to build the problem-solving capital of the new economy. The initiative is designed to align partners who work across industries and communities to start ventures, solve problems, and scale impact. It’s now a strategic initiative of the GREATER MSP Partnership, the Greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul region’s 501c3 public-private economic development partnership.

The Forge North Leadership Council will steer this effort to proudly celebrate, inclusively connect, and dream bigger across a vibrant ecosystem. It will be comprised of entrepreneurs, investors, corporate innovators, leaders of entrepreneurial support organizations, educators and other key stakeholders working in alignment with GREATER MSP Partnership Board and Staff.

Specifically, the Council will work to:

  • Engage a diverse ecosystem in setting clear and ambitious goals (e.g. startup rates) and consistently tracking progress through shared indicators
  • Use goals to rally partners around transformational ideas that accelerate risk taking and ignite inclusive growth
  • Establish annual objectives for the initiative itself, in service of broader ecosystem goals
  • Prioritize support for peer groups & projects, global outreach & PR, and local events
  • Support and amplify local and statewide efforts (e.g. Full Stack Saint Paul, Launch Minnesota)

Founding members in the Forge North coalition worked with the GREATER MSP Partnership to design this Leadership Council and took input from a Design Team of local entrepreneurs, investors, and community builders. A minimum of six and maximum of eight Council Members will be selected through this open application process.

The Leadership Council will operate with by-laws approved by its members. Council members will be expected to identify with the Operating Principles established by Forge North’s founders, as well as the values of the GREATER MSP Partnership. Specific logistics, including frequency of meetings, will be determined by Council Members based on the goals & objectives they set. Full-time staff will manage the Council, with additional support, as necessary. 

This background document provides additional details. Thank you to the dozens of founding members who built Forge North, volunteer council Design Team members, and thousands of people across the ecosystem for working every day to start and scale ventures and solve important problems.

You are encouraged to apply or to nominate someone else.


Have questions? Feel free to contact Matt Lewis, Vice President, Strategic Initiatives at GREATER MSP at, or reach out to interim Forge North co-chairs Jessica Berg, Director of MN Cup, and Maria Ploessl, Executive Director of Minnestar.

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