Small Towns News

Quilting can be a grounding exercise in the Zoom age

When you say yes to something new, you don’t always know what you’re getting into. And, a new adventure can often be the best medicine.

When Krista Dittman, my good friend and Center for Rural Affairs board president, and I said yes to a joint quilt project in 2019, we learned so much about ourselves and each other. We learned about resiliency, about getting in over our heads, and digging out. We picked up many new skills, and embraced techniques and challenges we may have resisted on our own. We shared time, space, minor disasters, and about a hundred pictures and tutorials. And, as we successfully broke through, and completed our big project right before the deadline (i.e. our friends’ wedding day), we knew we were just getting started.

Tina goes the extra mile for local entrepreneurs

For the past 14 years, Tina Biteghe Bi Ndong has witnessed the work the Center for Rural Affairs has done with the West Point, Nebraska, community. As the executive director of the West Point Chamber of Commerce, she has seen the relationship between the two organizations blossom over the years and become an integral part of that partnership.

Tina has supported entrepreneurs and given back to her community to such an extent that the Center has chosen her as the recipient of its 2019 Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP) Extra Mile Award.

Community development comes first for award recipient

Each year, the Bob Steffen Pioneer Award is bestowed by the Center for Rural Affairs to a person who works to make extraordinary contributions in building community engagement within their own communities. People who receive this award provide a model for innovation, stewardship, or community development.

Few people exist who show more passion for or work harder toward those goals than Hank Miller.


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