Most of Briana Mumme’s life has been centered around big-city life. Having been born in the San Diego, Calif. area and spending much of her growing up years in the metro area of Minnesota, coming to a small-town, rural setting was not all that attractive.

That is until she actually got to experience it. Now Mumme loves the rural way of life and wants to help provide opportunities for others to be able to have that same type of experience. 

Mumme believes the best way she can do that is through helping create an environment in the Redwood area where people have good jobs and a great quality of life.

She can help make that happen in her new role as the economic development coordinator for Redwood County.

“I have a passion for this community,” said Mumme, adding that has extended beyond the boundaries of one city to the entire area as she is learning more and more about what makes this region great.

The role Mumme is filling is a newly created position for Redwood County, as the leadership of the county opted to move forward in the future with its own economic development program.

They needed the right type of person to help get the program heading in the right direction, and when the decision was made to hire Mumme they expressed their opinion she was a good fit.

Mumme believes her role is multi-faceted, as she works with the county’s economic development authority to help the business community continue to thrive. That, she said, means business development and retention, as well as making sure those employees in the area have the skill sets to do the jobs that are in demand.

Mumme also knows as part of her role there are issues, such as childcare and housing, that she needs to help address however she is able. Mumme initially came to the Redwood area a few years ago, but then moved away for a while, including a stint in Montana.

After moving back to Minnesota she lived in Atwater for a period of time and made a connection with Rice Home Medical.

“I was working in Willmar at first,” she said, adding then a position in the Redwood Falls site opened up.

So, the decision was made by Mumme and her family to come back to the area. Her husband, Matthew, is a Redwood Falls native. Being in the area has allowed them to be closer to family.

After returning to the area, Mumme felt the need to do more than just work at her job, and so she started volunteering in different capacities. Those roles opened her eyes to the potential that this area has to offer, and now in her job as the economic development coordinator she is able to help people tap into that.

In her position, Mumme can provide assistance to people who are looking to start a business or want to expand an existing one.

That might mean helping them understand what it takes to find the ideal piece of property to obtaining all of the right permits to do what they want to do. She will also be able to point people to other resources in the community that can help them develop a business plan and get the financing they need to make their vision become reality.

Mumme works with the Redwood County economic development authority to help make Redwood County economic development friendly, and in making decisions about the dollars it has available through a revolving loan fund.

“Being part of that growth is what drew me to apply for this job in the first place,” said Mumme, adding she just wanted to be part of the solution that would help the community grow.

In a lot of ways, Mumme said she is serving as a liaison between those prospective businesses and those who can help them bring their idea to fruition. Mumme said she is looking forward to the opportunity to serve in that capacity.

Mumme said she is planning to meet with the leadership of every community in Redwood County in the coming months to introduce herself and what she can offer.

She also wants to find out more about what those communities and their surrounding areas have in place and what they would like to see.

“There are a lot of people who have great ideas,” said Mumme, adding she is looking forward to hearing and learning about them.

There are no limitations to the people who Mumme can work with as she serves all of Redwood County.

Starting a business can be a daunting task for the inexperienced, and Mumme can be that person who helps people feel less overwhelmed and more apt to find success.

Mumme also knows she can only be successful in her role through making connections with others, and she is maintaining some of her past roles in the area, including being a member of the Rotary Club and as part of the leadership for the LINC Redwood County program that is helping develop leaders for the area.

Mumme and her family, which also includes two children, reside in Franklin, but she said they are very connected to Redwood County as she works in the community and their children attend the local school district.

Mumme is excited about the opportunity she has been given to help people and to see them succeed all while working toward a stronger economy in the area. Mumme recognizes she still has a lot to learn in her new role, as she is still very new to her the position, but as a lifelong learner, Mumme wants to broaden her own horizons if they can help her do her job better.

Those who would like to talk with Mumme about their business idea are encouraged to give her a call at (507) 637-1122. Her office is located in the county government center in Redwood Falls. One may also send her an e-mail at briana_m@co.redwood.mn.us.