By Joe Bowen 

Business grant to help the 'underestimated'


November 24, 2023

Contributed photo

Heart Berry CEO and Cloquet artist Sarah Agaton Howes, right, meets with U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for Minority Business Development Don Cravins, let, and his staff in downtown Cloquet Tuesday. Cravins wanted to learn about Native entrepreneurship and share the federal government's plans to grant funds to NorthSpan in support of entrepreneurs.

A rebranded and expanded regional program hopes to help Northeastern Minnesota entrepreneurs who are Black, Indigenous, military veterans, or women.

The Driving Access to Wealth & Networks (DAWN) program at Northspan Group, Inc., a Duluth-based nonprofit, is set to receive $2 million over the next four years from the U.S. Department of Commerce. That money is meant to help budding business leaders who hail from historically underserved communities - or, as more than one speaker at a kickoff event held Monday, Nov. 20, put it, historically "underestimated" communities.

The program will help lev...

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