Office Hours - Bismarck, ND 2019

Office Hours are opportunities for our staff to connect face to face with people across our region. These meetings offer a chance for us to share our grant and program information, as well as help us to better understand the challenges and opportunities that exist across our region.

On Thursday, September 19, 2019 we will visit Bismarck, ND with our partners Northwest Area Foundation and Otto Bremer Trust

Sign up for a spot

Propel Nonprofits will offer free trainings on the Fundamentals of Nonprofit Finance and the Fundamentals of Budgeting in Bismarck on Wednesday, September 18. Visit their registration page for more information.

The Bush Foundation will also host a reception on Thursday, September 19 from 5-7pm at the North Dakota Heritage Center and State Museum in Bismarck. Visit our registration page to RSVP. We hope to see you there!

Bush Foundation

Available opportunities to discuss with staff:


Community Innovation grants fund problem-solving projects that lead to effective, equitable and sustainable solutions to pressing community challenges. 

  • Grants range from $10,000 to $200,000. Community Innovation grants of $500 to $10,000 are available in North Dakota through our intermediary partner organization, the Consensus Council.
  • We seek to support initiatives that are inclusive, collaborative and resourceful.
  • There is no deadline for the Community Innovation grant application.

Please note: these grants are not made to established programs that are seeking general operating support, but rather to organizations proposing new or evolving initiatives.

Learn more about Community Innovation grants.


We believe in the power of people to make great ideas happen in their communities. Each year, we award the Bush Fellowship to up to 24 people from across our region.

  • Bush Fellows receive a flexible grant of up to $100,000 that they use for personal leadership growth.
  • The Bush Fellowship is an investment in people who have a record of accomplishment and the potential to do even more in their community.
  • Bush Fellows have shown extraordinary leadership and the ability to inspire those around them. They have a clear vision for what is possible in their community and what type of personal growth and development they need to make that vision a reality.

Learn more about the Bush Fellowship.


We believe in the power of events to inspire, equip and connect people to think bigger and think differently about what is possible in our communities:

Northwest Area Foundation

The Northwest Area Foundation supports organizations anchored in the culture of the people they serve and dedicated to expanding economic opportunity in under-resourced communities.

During office hours, they are interested in refreshing their knowledge about emergent issues in the community and learning about examples of sector and place-based efforts to build inclusive economies. They support local ownership and culturally anchored solutions that build more equitable, inclusive and long-lasting prosperity. They target their funding to organizations that reflect and directly benefit low-income members of their priority communities:  people of color, immigrants, refugees, Native Americans and people in rural places. 

Karla Miller, program director, will schedule meetings to learn about and gain a deeper understanding of the sectors and places where inclusive economic ecosystems are creating greater opportunities for low-income populations in North Dakota and in reservation communities.


Learn more about the The Northwest Area Foundation, including information about its regions, eligibility and how to apply for a grant.

Otto Bremer Trust

The Otto Bremer Trust (OBT) is a bank holding company and a private charitable trust based in Saint Paul, MN, that works at the intersection of finance and philanthropy. OBT is the 92 percent owner of Bremer Bank, a regional financial services company, and also manages a diversified investment portfolio. Since its founding, OBT has invested more than $700 million in people, places and opportunities in the Upper Midwest.


While OBT does not have specific strategic grant-making priorities, they do provide broad categories to explain the types of programs and services they invest in. These categories, while not exhaustive, are intended to provide some insight into their social returns.

Basic Needs

For displaced individuals or those facing other challenges, securing a roof overhead, finding clothing to wear and putting food on the table are the first steps toward self-sufficiency. These grants include those that focus on short-term assistance through food shelves and outreach programs, cash or vouchers, and auto repair, along with refugee resettlement efforts, transitional housing programs and homeless shelters.

Community Asset Building

By bringing together various forms of capital within a community — financial, social and cultural — OBT seeks to achieve this common goal. This category covers a range of investments, including small business development, diversity initiatives, community planning and infrastructure, long-term housing programs, transportation, literacy and adult education, all which are focused on building strong community assets.

Health & Well-being

OBT funds a range of care including medical, dental, vision services and wellness programs for families and the elderly, particularly supporting services in underserved and rural communities. Examples include early education and parenting programs, community recreation, physical and mental health services, youth support and enrichment, post-secondary education and job skills.

Restorative & Emergency Services

OBT believes it is critical to support organizations working to bring stability to individuals and families facing disruptive forces in life. Grants include those that address domestic violence and sexual assault prevention and recovery, disaster response, emergency services such as volunteer fire departments and paramedics, economic stabilization, and helping people navigate the judicial and legal system.


Visit to learn more about Otto Bremer Trust's grantmaking process, including information about its regions, eligibility and how to apply for a grant.

Propel Nonprofits

Propel Nonprofits' programs and services provide a holistic approach to meet organizations' most pressing needs, including the ability to more closely link strategy, governance and finance. Propel Nonprofits serves nonprofit organizations in Minnesota and the adjacent states of Wisconsin, Iowa, North Dakota and South Dakota.

Propel Nonprofits will offer trainings in Bismarck on September 18. Visit their registration page for more information.

On September 19, Propel is offering, to people who attended the previous day's training, the opportunity to have 45-minute, one-on-one financial guidance sessions. Typical topics include: cash flow, restricted versus unrestricted revenue, balance sheets, income statements, reserve funds, etc. This provides the opportunity for organizations to dig deeper into the finance topic that is most important to them.

Visit Propel Nonprofits’ website to learn more about what they do.

Sign Up

If you or your organization fit within any of these funding areas and you would like to meet with a staff person to learn more, register for the September 19 Office Hours in Bismarck, ND.

Propel Nonprofits will offer trainings in Bismarck the day before (September 18). Visit their registration page for more information.

If you have any questions, please contact

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