Symbol of opportunity, beacon of light
By Al McFarlane Editor-in-Chief
Oct 16, 2018 Updated Oct 17, 2018
“Today is really a testament to your vision, your persistence, your hard work and the love you have for North Minneapolis.” – Brian Cornell, CEO Target
Ravi Norman and Richard Copeland, with support and well wishes of civic, business and community leaders, cut the ribbon at September 14 ceremonies to open Thor’s Regional Acceleration Center.
“I think we all recognize that this is a historic moment” said Timothy Welsh, Vice Chairman, Consumer Banking Sales and Service at US Bank. “Today we celebrate the opening of a new headquarters for one of the most important and vibrant companies in our region. But we celebrate more than that. We celebrate Thor’s new headquarters as a symbol of hope, a symbol of opportunity, a beacon of light for our community.” Welsh was among the legion of luminaries, voices in chorus crescendo, articulating the signiﬁcance of the occasion for North Minneapolis and for the region. Unfolding on resplendently cloud-free September 14th, the ribbon cutting open house for Thor Company’s Regional Acceleration Center formally acknowledged and unveiled the latest accomplishment in the metamorphosis of North Minneapolis. “But today is historic not simply because of the opening of this amazing new facility. Today’s activities, and the hope they represent, symbolize what is best about our community,” Welsh said. “Our community has long been blessed with visionary leaders who cared passionately for the people around them. These business leaders believed that they had an obligation to make the communities around them stronger, a place of opportunity for everyone.”
Welsh said, “Names like Dayton and Pillsbury epitomize that generous spirit. Richard Copeland and Ravi Norman follow in that long line of exceptional leaders. We are all grateful for their selﬂess and generous leadership.” Target CEO Brian Cornell drilled deeper, paying tribute to Copeland and Norman. “Thank you, Ravi and Richard,” he said, “and a huge thanks to all the community leaders who are here today. Today is really a testament to your vision, your persistence, your hard work and the love you have for North Minneapolis. “You are really the story here. We have faith leaders and political leaders, nonproﬁt and private sector leaders all working together to create positive change. On behalf of everyone at Target, we are honored to play a role in the project with you,” Cornell said. “Today also symbolizes what we can accomplish when we hold hands and work together for the beneﬁt of all of us. Many generations before us lived out this belief, and we are here today because countless businesses, nonproﬁts, and government organizations came together to hold hands and do what no one of them could do by themselves,” Welsh said. “US Bank is honored to be holding hands with Thor, Hennepin County, MEDA, Target, and so many other organizations who are all working together to help this community thrive.” “It’s one thing to talk about a vision for the future … to look at an artist’s rendering and dream about what could be. But today is diﬀerent, because that rendering is now a reality. The blueprint is now a building,” said Cornell. The vision, wrote InsightManaging editor Harry Colbert, Jr. in a mid-September feature on Thor, is a ﬁve story, 92,000 square foot, $36 million building with a 625-stall parking ramp. The Regional Acceleration Center houses oﬃces for Thor, Target Corporation, Hennepin County/NorthPoint Health & Wellness, Metropolitan Economic Development Association, (Meda), Build Wealth Minnesota, ME & I Fitness and Performance, and Sammy’s Avenue Eatery. The fourth-ﬂoor rooftop deck has an unobstructed view of the downtown Minneapolis skyline. “But what’s most important is what you see both inside and outside these doors. And that’s a community of people leading organizations dedicated to a common purpose, ensuring this project lives up to its promise to serving as a catalyst for continued investment and positive change for many years to come,” said Cornell. More than just an exciting new facility, Welsh said, “It is a symbol of hope, a reminder of the beneﬁts of generous leadership, and a living example of what we can accomplish when we all hold hands and work together.”
“My hope is that every time we see this building, or work with Thor, or see the many wonderful people in this community, that each of us is inspired to reach out our hands to one another to see what we can accomplish together. If we do that, we will create an unstoppable force which will beneﬁt countless generations to come,” Welsh said. Other public and private sector leaders addressing the ribbon-cutting ceremony included, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, Congressman Keith Ellison, State Senator Bobby Champion, County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, NorthPoint Health & Wellness CEO Stella Whitney-West, Meda CEO Gary Cunningham, and New Salem Baptist Church Pastor, The Rev. Jerry McAfee.
Read the full article from Insight News here.