Corridor staff is currently working on website updates, and things will be moving around in the next few weeks. If you have questions about where to find information, please contact Alyssa Petersen by email or phone, 712-264-3474.
This Week in the Corridor
Women in Manufacturing Feature: Part 2
To celebrate these last two weeks of Manufacturing Month, we are excited to be featuring a few women in manufacturing companies throughout our region!
Tiffany Plagman is an Assembly Group Lead at Safco Products. The Laurens native now lives in Spencer and commutes to her job in Milford.

Before getting a job a Safco, Plagman only had experience in retail, and she wanted to do something different. Her hands-on job makes the days fly by, and she doesn’t get bored because there is always something new to learn!

“I had never worked in manufacturing before and had no idea what I was getting myself into. What I’ve learned is that anyone can succeed in manufacturing.”
Danielle Massukado is an FSQA Manager at Tyson Foods, The Hillshire Brands in Storm Lake. A veterinarian working in the Food Industry for the last 20 years, Massukado has experience with beef, pork and poultry plants.

A mentor in her early career encouraged Massukado to make the world a better place through her skills acquired at Vet School, which sparked the idea to improve Food Safety and Quality of Animal Protein offered to the world.

“Being a woman in a male-dominated field can pose challenges, but it’s not as intimidating as you think – diversity makes good business sense,” says Massukado. “(The best part is) leading the way through my work in developing solutions to some of the greatest challenges around it – and by inspiring and encouraging more women to join the manufacturing workforce, since we are an important part of the solution to the industry’s workforce needs.”
Read more stories of women in manufacturing on our website!
Gen Z has a lot to say
Big ideas are democratic. They can come from anyone, even—or perhaps, especially—teenagers.

Last school year, I was honored to serve as the speaker coach for TEDxYouth@Okoboji. It was a job for which I was emphatically not qualified.

But it was also awesome. Over the course of multiple months, I worked with eight students and one adult as they refined thoughts, into concepts, into ideas, into TEDx talks of 10 minutes or less.

For those few who may not be familiar, TED stands for technology, entertainment and design. TED conferences bring speakers and audiences together for a day of “ideas worth sharing.” TEDx is the community-based version of the big TED events so prevalent on YouTube.

Giving a TEDx talk is hard. You must strip away the fat and muscle so that only the rigid bone of an idea remains. Then you memorize, memorize, memorize.

Our TEDxYouth went through all of that in preparation for a spring speaker event that never came. COVID-19 can stifle even the biggest ideas.

But not forever. On November 6, a socially-distanced watch party will take place at Superior 71 Drive-In east of Spirit Lake. With the artists at F8 Creative behind the camera, the young speakers recorded their talks. Now they will be shown in mega-big screen for all to see, hear and critique.

Tickets are $20 per carload. You can buy them here.

I want to give a big shout-out to Brad Jungers of Northwest Bank for leading the organizing team. Also, I should disclose that my daughter and son are speakers and my wife, Carry, is a teacher in the No Boundaries project-based learning program at Okoboji that put TEDxYouth@Okoboji together from first “ahem” to final curtain.

That’s not why I’m sending out this invitation, thought. Instead, I think attendees will be engaged and challenged. I also want our region show these young people that they—and their ideas—are valued.

Remember: Youth is just another word for future leader.
Congratulations to Storm Lake native Nate Bjorkgren for being named head coach of the Indiana Pacers. He previously was an assistant under Toronto Raptor’s coach Nick Nurse, who grew up in Carroll. There are only 30 head coaches in the National Basketball Association and two of them are from rural western Iowa. That is slam-dunk awesome.
RSVP for the Quarterly Meeting
via Zoom

11/18/20 11:30am - 11/18/20 12:30pm

Please RSVP to receive the Zoom link.
Contact with any questions.
I'll be there!
I can't make it
Featured Real Estate
Buena Vista County Office Space

Location: 202 W. 7th St.
Alta, IA 51002

Sale Price: $167,000

Square Feet: 8,832

For more information visit the Corridor website!
Around the Corridor
Dr. Brian Lenzmeier selected as BVU president

Last week the Buena Vista University (BVU) Board of Trustees unanimously voted to appoint Dr. Brian Lenzmeier as the 19th President of BVU. Lenzmeier has been the Interim President since May and serves on the Corridor Board of Directors.

Read more about the appointment.
Governor announces state dollars available for COVID-impacted fairs

Governor Reynolds and the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) launched the new Iowa County Fairs Relief Program on Monday. The program will provide relief to eligible county fairs due to revenues lost because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn about the program.
Grand Avenue Community Outreach, Spencer Jaycees, Upper Des Moines Opportunity partner with USDA for drive-through food distribution

The USDA has announced a partnership with Grand Avenue Community Outreach, Spencer Jaycees, and Upper Des Moines Opportunity to bring a drive-through food distribution event to Clay County on November 1st. The program is free and open to all Clay County residents in need of food assistance. Food will feed up to 600 families.

Iowa's newest solar garden tests battery-storage solution

Alliant Energy's new Marshalltown Solar Garden now has over 9,500 solar panels generating clean energy. This pilot project combines both solar power and a battery to generate, store and deliver electricity to customers.

Read more about the energy project.
TAI Announces 2020 Iowa High School Tech Summit presented by Principal Foundation

The Technology Association of Iowa (TAI) announced the virtual 2020 Iowa High School Tech Summit presented by Principal Foundation. The Summit will take place November 17th from 9 a.m. to noon and is open to all Iowa high school students. This summit will provide students with an opportunity to explore various technology careers and companies across the state.

Learn more about the summit.
Investor Spotlight
Each week we want to feature and thank the businesses and individuals that have committed to economic development and growth in our communities. To learn more about these investors and others, visit our Business Directory!
Redwood Farms
Sector: Manufacturing
Location: Estherville
Description: Dakota Pack is a family-owned and operated producer of pork products. In Estherville, IA, they are strategically located in one of the biggest hog producing regions in the country. The relationships with growers in the region afford them the ability to source hogs to exacting specifications for their customers.
Rembrandt Foods
Sector: Manufacturing
Location: Spirit Lake
Description: Rembrandt Foods is unlocking the magic of the egg as a leading global supplier. Their products reach consumers in more than 30 countries and touch virtually every food category.
Jobs in the Iowa Lakes Corridor
Post your jobs where quality candidates are already looking:

See current job openings here.
Job Title
Production Associate: Night
Production Team Lead
Agriculture Systems
Technology Leader
Accounting/Payroll Assistant
Building Inspector
Machinist - Day
Machinist - Night
Maintenance Tech
Recruiting/HR Assistant
MWI Components
MWI Components
MaxYield Cooperative

Employment Connections
City of Storm Lake
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Spencer Municipal Hospital
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Questions? Want to be featured in next week's newsletter?
Contact the Iowa Lakes Corridor at,
or call us at 712.264.3474.