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Foundations start a new year with new name, strengthened partnership

By: Doreen Gosmire, director of communications, Dakotas UMC

Sheri Meister 2019

Sheri Meister, CEO/ president of the Dakotas Minnesota Methodist Foundations.

“We are about turning money into ministry,” says Sheri Meister, the CEO and president, of the newly named Dakotas and Minnesota Methodist Foundations.

As of January 1, 2022, the Dakotas Methodist Foundation is now named the Dakotas and Minnesota Methodist Foundations. The new name is meant to invite all churches, individuals, and affiliated organizations with Wesleyan heritage to benefit from the Foundations services. 


“We will continue offering services and building relationships. Our partnership with the Dakotas and Minnesota Conferences provides the opportunity to expand services and cut back on administrative structures and functions,” describes Meister.


In 2019, Meister assumed an area-wide role in which she oversees both foundations simultaneously. As a result, the Dakotas and Minnesota Foundations have seen a growth in their portfolios and services and have decreased the administrative structures.


“We have been able to decrease the duplication of administrative structures and increase the number of staff that provide services to both conferences,” says Meister.


Five staff members provide a range of services, including grants, scholarships, investment and endowment opportunities, and education for individuals and congregations.

Dk Mn Foundations Logo Vertical

The new name provides an organizational framework to expand the partnership and services in the future. Meister says, “We are in a position to grow and want to be inclusive of all congregations, individuals, and related agencies with a Wesleyan belief.”

The Dakotas and Minnesota Methodist Foundations are following the lead of Wespath Investments and a few other foundations that have also expanded their reach by forming partnerships and expanding services.


There will continue to be two separate boards, one for the Dakotas and one for Minnesota. The boards serve as advisors for the partnership, focusing on building relationships and encouraging innovative ministry.


“We are here to concentrate on what is in the best interest of the churches, individuals, and agencies. We are ready to expand and provide comprehensive services to all,” says Meister.

UMC

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