Volunteer with Emerging Prairie!
We are always looking for volunteers to support our events and programs. If you
are interested in volunteering, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emerging Prairie is an organization that believes in and nurtures the potential of our community. We have made it our mission to celebrate the entrepreneurs, artists, and creators, specifically in the high technology space. Recognition of our community’s potential, development of an environment for social connectivity, and the act of highlighting the risk takers and change-makers is vitally important, as these are the key accelerators of growth and development. Emerging Prairie was founded based upon the following principles in 2013 by a group of Fargo entrepreneurs who wanted to make a difference in the community they call home.
- Educate Our City – By bringing ideas to Fargo and challenging the status quo, we can move our community forward. Through events, programs, and using our influence to convene leaders, we are able to move ideas to action.
- Infuse the Arts – We create opportunities for the arts/artists to be incorporated into all of our events and programs. We believe artists are the culture creators in a community; culture is what makes people choose to build a life in a city.
- Build on Our Brightspots – We are cheerleaders and champions of the people who are doing great things in our community. Working from the idea of “a rising tide lifts all boats,” we celebrate those we are making progress and positively impacting our community.
- Practice Radical Inclusivity – As the fabric, our community becomes richer, we need to create an environment to welcome people from a variety of backgrounds, faith traditions, lifestyles, etc. We do this through actions such as participating in Welcoming Week, celebrating New American Entrepreneurs, providing gender neutral restrooms at events, and offering vegan food at our events.
Our mission is to connect and celebrate the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Fargo-Moorhead. We do so by operating a wide variety of events and initiatives, such as Drone Focus, the Prairie Den coworking space and 1 Million Cups (1MC) Fargo, the largest and most active 1 Million Cups program in the country. We also operate an online publication that highlights the region’s entrepreneurs and innovators that are turning Fargo into a flourishing tech hub. In March of 2016 Emerging Prairie became a 501(c)3 non-profit to further support our mission.
Executive Director & Co-Founder
The Executive Director of Emerging Prairie, Greg is a social entrepreneur and connector of people across the midwest. Greg co-founded Students Today Leaders Forever while an undergrad at the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. From there, Greg joined the Kilbourne Group and worked on a variety of projects to stimulate growth and entrepreneurship in Downtown Fargo. Greg has been a leader in organizing and managing numerous entrepreneurial events in the FM area, including TEDxFargo, Startup Weekend, and more. Greg can be reached at email@example.com
Conference Director and Development Associate
As the Conference Director at Emerging Prairie, Lindsay constantly has her eyes set on the vision and strategy behind the events. As an avid learner, Lindsay rises up to any new challenge and strives to master each new skill. During her college years, she attended the Ohio State University earning a B.S. in Animal Science and an M.S. in Agricultural Extension Education. Lindsay provides a strategic mindset to the organization and leadership team while keeping the community in front of mind. In her free time, you can find Lindsay with her husband, Paul and her two Cardigan Welsh Corgis. Reach Lindsay at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Manager of Operations
Ian is a process-guy and an entrepreneur, he’s passionate about everything leadership and entrepreneurship. He is a proud Bison with a B.A. in business administration and an MBA from NDSU. Professionally, he has consulted dozens of businesses around strategy, marketing, financial management and overall business growth. When he’s not working you can find Ian with his wife Kendra, their son Sylis and their 100-pound Cane Corso named Porter. Some of his hobbies include hunting, fishing, making wine, kombucha, mead, maple syrup, or really just about anything food related. Reach Ian at email@example.com
Megan Jeromchek is an event specialist who spent the last 3 years working in the events industry in Denver. After graduating with a degree in Communication Studies from Minnesota State University Moorhead, she spent time living in Hawaii, Omaha, and Denver before her and her husband decided to once again make Fargo home. She is excited to bring her experiences to Emerging Prairie, where she will oversee event logistics for the organization. Megan is recently married to her husband Jordan and loves traveling, writing, and all things pop culture.
Experiential Design Fellow
Christopher gets out of bed each morning to find the most constructive way to cultivate love and manifest it to make the world a better place to live. As a storyteller and community instigator, Chris is here in Fargo building the toolkit to design more fulfilling cultures. As a Rhode Island native, he is new to Fargo and excited to immerse himself in such a loving and purposeful community. And yes, he would love to meet you.
Kelsey Nelson graduated from UND where she studied Human Resource Management and Business Management. After college, she was given a unique opportunity to work in the non-profit sector with fundraising and event planning for three and a half years. Kelsey and her husband, Jacob, recently moved to Fargo and are excited for this new adventure to experience what Fargo has to offer.
Digital Marketing Coordinator
Darby Fike is a creative at heart. She loves being immersed in the arts, music, and culture. She recently graduated from Minnesota State University, Moorhead with a degree in photojournalism and advertising. She is excited to bring her experiences in social media, design, and photography to Emerging Prairie. In her free time, Darby be found at local breweries, attending a craft class, or spending time with family and friends.
Patrick Chaffee is the EVP & Managing Director of Wealth Management Division at Bell Banks. He says that the best thing about his position is “having the opportunity to work with some of the best and brightest minds in the wealth management industry.” When he’s not working, you can find Patrick with his wife, Erica, and their three boys at their lake home on Pelican Lake or on the golf course.
Co-Founder & Board Member
Jake Joraanstad is an entrepreneur with a passion for technology. He is the co-founder and CEO of Myriad Mobile, a mobile consulting and development company. In two years, Jake took a small team with no sales to nearly 20 employees serving Fortune 500 companies – all before he was 23. Jake has spoken at numerous events and continues to spread his passion for technology whenever opportunities arise. He graduated with a computer engineering degree at North Dakota State University and lives in Fargo with his wife and many animals.
Kirk Anton, founder of Heat Transfer Warehouse is the e-commerce guru of the FM area. In just six years, he has built HTW into a team with 33 employees, offices in Fargo,Las Vegas, and Cincinnati, and customers around the world. Kirk is also one of Emerging Prairie’s most avid supporters and a frequenter of 1 Million Cups, Startup Drinks, and Cart Monthly.
Miguel is a native of Fargo, ND, who splits his time between the FM area and Boston. He is a practicing intellectual property attorney with a strong involvement in technology companies and entrepreneurial ecosystems. Miguel holds a BSB from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota and a JD from Harvard Law School.
Interesting FAQs You May Want To Know
What is Emerging Prairie?
What do we actually do? Here’s what “connecting and celebrating” looks like:
Events keep the energy pumping. By hosting weekly, monthly, and annual events, we strive to keep the community active and engaged with each other. The best communities are those that support each other, especially those who are taking risks and building their own companies. 1 Million Cups, Drone Focus, E-Commerce Breakfast, TEDxFargo and Startup Weekend are a few events we help organize, that keep creative energy flowing throughout this city.
We cover the startup beat. Everyday we publish an article (or two) about the amazing things that are happening in this entrepreneurial community. Whether it’s featuring local events, startups, or individual entrepreneurs, we strive to keep people informed on the activity in our startup community – with a primary focus on the tech industry.
Our programs break down silos. Currently our biggest program is the annual Intern Experience – a life-changing 8 weeks where interns from all over the area tour local startups, meet seasoned entrepreneurs, and form lasting friendships with fellow interns.
At the Prairie Den, we’re all co-workers. As of 2015, Emerging Prairie decided to run a coworking space! While it was surprise, (even to us) we are so proud of the Prairie Den and what it stands for. Everything in this space, which is run on a membership basis, signifies the incredible support of the community. From eye-popping local art that’s on the ceiling and the walls, to the furniture where freelancers, artists and innovators work, the Prairie den has quickly become a hub of downtown Fargo. Check it out!
Why are you building Emerging Prairie?
Our goal is to accelerate the growth and development of our communities so our region can create, attract, and grow the businesses today that will create its tomorrow. By doing so, we believe we can create the world’s next best entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Emerging Prairie’s vision is to be a resource that provides:
- The pulse of entrepreneurial activity in the region – news, advice, feedback, resources, events and talent.
- A platform on which we can all share our knowledge and success.
- A network of passionate individuals shaping our region’s future.
Who is your audience?
Our audience is anyone interested in being a part of the entrepreneurial community focused on startups, technology and innovation, and anyone interested in learning about it. We believe that in order to have a healthy entrepreneurial community, we need a healthy ecosystem of connected resources. This community consists of entrepreneurs, investors, government, universities, students, service providers (lawyers, accountants, marketers, consultants, etc.) and large companies. These participants, working together with shared passion, are vital to the success of an entrepreneurial community.
What type of content do you publish?
Our day-to-day content covers startup activity in the Fargo-Moorhead region with an emphasis on tech-based entrepreneurs. Content can generally be categorized into news, features and editorials. We accept guest contributions as well, so feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
What does Emerging Prairie mean?
Our name stems from the activities taking place on the Prairie. There are thousands of talented people building valuable companies, products and technologies in our region. We’re here to support them by telling their stories and exchanging opinions that foster fresh thinking.
What geographies do you cover?
To start, we are focusing on the greater Fargo, N.D. area – about a 100-mile radius around the metro area. Once we feel stable as a new publication, we’ll begin to cover Sioux Falls and the Minneapolis/St.Paul area. If you’re interesting in helping us expand, please contact us
What does your logo mean?
The hexagon is representative of a gear and the driving force within technology, innovation and engineering. The two green blades represent growth and our geographical footprint – The Plains.
How can I become an Emerging Prairie sponsor?
We’d love to hear from you. Please contact us!
Can I be a guest writer for Emerging Prairie?
Yes, you can!
Our contributors are entrepreneurs, business owners, executives, developers, designers, students, investors, marketers, lawyers, healthcare professionals, etc. We do our best to include the entire entrepreneurial community; we’d love for you to join.
Criteria for guest posts:
Must be related to tech-based startups.
Posts are typically between 400-800 words.
Please include 1-2 visuals (photos, video, graphics).
Posts will be edited by Emerging Prairie’s Lead Writer before publication, and you will work with him/her on polishing up a final draft.
E-mail email@example.com to submit an article!
How do I become a contributor?
We’re always looking for new contributors at Emerging Prairie. Send us a short email at firstname.lastname@example.org and please include the following:
- Who you are
- Why you want to contribute – we’re looking for passion and purpose!!!
- A sample of your writing
- Contact information (email and phone number)
What is the Silicon Prairie and our connection to it?
There is no specific definition of the Silicon Prairie, but we like to think of it as a multi-state region comprised of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, and Missouri. Emerging Prairie will focus on the northern end (North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota) of the Silicon Prairie.