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Think Again Brooklyns

The Me Too Movement - Think Again Brooklyns Print E-mail


How Is the Me Too Movement Influencing Public Policy?

Tuesday, July 17

6:00 p.m. - Free Pizza Buffet and Social               6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park City Council Chambers

5200 85th Avenue North, Brooklyn Park, MN


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Moderator - Asma Mohammed, Reviving the Islamic Sisterhood for Empowerment





melissa hortmanjoycepeppinMelissa Hortman - House Republican Majority Leader Joyce Peppin (left) proposed adding a single new line to the Minnesota Human Rights Act’s definition of sexual harassment: “An intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment does not require the harassing conduct or communication to be severe or pervasive.”  DFL Minority Leader Melissa Hortman in the House and Senator Karin Housley, R-St. Mary’s Point, in the Senate introduced identical bills with her statement.  Representative Hortman will discuss the outcome of the legislation and how it will effect the legislature, state government, and employment.


Sergeant Robert Roushar and Detective Andrew Bromen will cover the standard procedures the police department uses for handling sexual abuse cases.  They will explain how the police department deals with victims of sexual violence, how someone gets charged and convicted, what are some of the barriers in these cases, and the difference between sexual harrassment and sexual abuse.  Andrew Broman will present a PowerPoint.  


Keisha T.  will present a PowerPoint that covers Cornerstone's process and resources available to victims of sexual violence.  Cornerstone partners with the Brooklyn Park Police Department to provide comprehensive services and support for adults and children in Brooklyn Park who have been impacted by domestic violence, sexual violence and/or human trafficking.



leslie lienemannLeslie L. Lienemann, a partner at Culberth & Lienemann, LLP, has devoted her entire career to representing working people in employment and civil rights cases including harassment, discrimination, retaliation, whistleblowing, employment contracts, defamation, wage claims, school bullying and police excessive force. Ms. Lienemann is a frequent speaker at local, regional, and national legal seminars on topics relating to employment law.  She has been active in present and past leadership roles in the Employee Lawyers Association of the Upper Midwest, the Minnesota Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association and 8th Circuit NELA.  As part of the MN NELA Amicus Committee, Ms. Lienemann  co-authored more than a dozen amicus briefs submitted to the Minnesota Court of Appeals and Minnesota Supreme Court covering a variety of important employment law questions.   Minnesota Law & Politics magazine named her to the Rising Stars list in 1998 and since then to the annual Super Lawyers.



Thank you to the organizers of the July forum:  Linda Freemon and Florkime Paye


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How Art Impacts a Community's Culture and Economy - Think Again Brooklyns Print E-mail




Placemaking Art, Music, and Spoken Word Coming Soon to

Station Areas along the Blue Line Extension LRT



art - painting display on the grass



Tuesday, June 19

6:00 p.m. - Pizza Buffet and Social         6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park Library, Mississippi Room

8500 West Broadway Avenue, Brooklyn Park 55443


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Everyone is Welcome



Moderator - Meena Mangalvedhekar


meena mangalvedhekarMeena Mangalvedhekar is an artist, photographer, and video producer who works in public art.  She began studying art as a teen ager in India and continued to earn a B.F.A. from the University of Minnesota.  Meena has been active in group shows and public art projects in the U.S. and India.  Through large installations, digital drawings, and placemaking experiments she strives to connect community and place.



Speaker - Dr. Brenda Kayzar - Collaborative Strategist, Urbane DrK Consulting
and Professor of Urban Geography, University of Minnesota



brenda kayzar 2Dr. Kayzar is the Collaborative Strategist and Owner of Urbane DrK Consulting where she provides strategic planning, research, and advocacy leadership support to government and nonprofit organizations. She applies a hybrid of experience from academia, business, and nonprofit leadership toward shaping better outcomes for communities, arts organizations, and creative workers. She’s authored works in academic and local presses about the economic, political, and social contexts of urban change, revitalization policy, the creative placemaking paradigm and its gentrification and development impacts to lower-income neighborhoods, communities of color, and the creative sector.


Brenda Kayzar has also served on numerous civic committees and working groups, and community and nonprofit boards such as the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association (NEMAA) and the Arts and Culturalnemadsign-2-optimized Leadership Program at University of Minnesota. As an urban geographer, she is keenly interested in how communities are engaged in development planning, seeking ways to ensure inclusion, and equitable outcomes in housing and service provision. Her research, civic, and community service, and role as president of the board of NEMAA developed her deep understanding of the role arts play in elevating overlooked narratives and fostering dialog and community cohesion.

Dr. Kayzar will speak on the Impact of Art on Developing Communities and Local Economies and address issues such as maintaining affordable housing in the midst of growth.



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Share Your Ideas for Biking and Walking to LRT Stations Print E-mail


Share Your Ideas for Walking and Biking to

Any of the Bottineau Line Light Rail Stations



Hennepin County Transit leaders would like the suggestions of Brooklyn Park residents who bike or walk near the areas where the Bottineau Extention of the Blue Line Light Rail will stop.  Attendees who attended the March Think Again Brooklyns forum shared their suggestions for biking and walking routes to LRT Stations and you can too.  If you are a biker or walker near any of the future LRT stops, you are likely to have insight into how access to a station can be improved for bikers or walkers. 


Before you begin, let me ask you, have you ever seen a bike path along a busy street that rarely has a biker?  Let me give you an example.  When we go to doctors' appointments in Abbott Northwestern Hospital or the Phillips Eye Clinic, we park on Portland or Park Avenues.  I'm usually careful to check if there is a bicyclist coming along the bike path right next to the parked cars, but I have never seen a bicyclist on either of the avenues.  Why is that?  Jay Wallsjasper, who has bicycled in cities across the U.S. has answered that in an excellent short article.



"Bike Breakthrough: Connecting neighborhoods with low-stress routes"



Jay Walljasper, November 9, 2017

bike paths protected from traffic


Jay emphasizes that bike routes need to be safe, and if they aren’t, people won’t use them.  Most bikers know that they might not fare so well if someone knocks them over by opening their car door on their right when traffic is going by to their left.  Jay includes photos that show how the bike lane should be separated from traffic by a barrier and gives suggestions for making intersections safer for bikers.  Read his short article that will give you insight and inspiration for your suggestions and will remind you of the joys of biking around town.







Immigrant Contributions to MN's Economy Print E-mail



 immigrant contributions photos


Immigrants - An Important Source of MN's Business Success

Tuesday, April 17

6:00 p.m. - Free Pizza Buffet and Social               6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park City Council Chambers

5200 85th Avenue North, Brooklyn Park, MN


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An Overview - Bill Blazar


Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Business Development


Minnesota Chamber of Commerce
Leader, Minnesota Business Immigration Coalition



bill blazarBill Blazar is a past member and chair of the board of the Minnesota Government Relations Council. He has also served in a leadership capacity for Minnesota's P16 Education Partnership, the Minnesota Health Data Institute, and the Citizens League.


Bill Blazar will speak on Immigrants’ Contributions to Minnesota, their importance to Minnesota’s economy, and ways to assure their success through education and good jobs.  The Minnesota Chamber of Commerce and the Minnesota Business Immigration Coalition have researched the role of immigrants in MN's economy together with Dr. Bruce Corrie, Associate Vice President of University Relations and International Programs at Concordia University.



rodrigo cala

The Immigrant Local "Farm to Fork" Economic Model 


Rodrigo Cala


Trainer for the Latino Economic Development Center

President of the Shared Ground Farmers' Cooperative Board


With Minnesota's increasing pollution of our lakes, streams, and acquifers, increasing greenhouse gas emissions, and increasing health problems for farm families, Think Again MN decided to cover the exciting development of a new local model called in short "Farm to Fork."  It involves producing healthy food for Minnesotans and using cooperatives to market farm products.  Latino and Hmong farmers are leading the development of this new economic model. 


An organic farmer, Rodrigo Cala will explain what led him to come to MN and how he got involved in farming.  He will describe the farming skills required, marketing products, how immigrants work toward the goal of owning their own farm, upcoming opportunities in farming, and how organic farm cooperatives benefit MN.




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Transit Oriented Development and Design - Think Again Brooklyns Print E-mail


light rail development



How Does It Change Land Use Zoning Regulations?

What Future Do You Imagine for the LRT Station Areas?

How Can We Make It Easy to Walk and Bike to the Stations?



Tuesday, March 20

6:00 p.m. - Free Pizza Buffet and Social               6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park City Council Chambers

5200 85th Avenue North, Brooklyn Park, MN


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The City of Brooklyn Park will be deciding on new zoning for along the light rail in June. Our March speakers will explain the kinds of development that can occur along the light rail, especially in the vicinity of the stations.
The city and county are also interested in exploring ways to improve walking and biking surrounding future light rail stations.


The City Council's zoning decisions will affect what can be developed along the light rail in coming years. Their decisions will depend on what kind of development residents would like to see along the light rail so following their presentations, our speakers will lead a discussion to get your ideas. People with many backgrounds and interests, including artists, musicians, ethnic business owners and people who'd like to start a business, families and seniors who need affordable housing, seniors who'd like to buy a condominium, community organizers and leaders, educators, environmentalists, people with landscape ideas, bicyclists, and people using walkers and wheel chairs will all have valuable ideas for what they'd like to see developed along the light rail.  Please come with your suggestions and invite others to join us with theirs too.



Dan Edgerton - Senior Associate, ZAN Associates - Moderator

michael lambMichael Lamb is the Urban Design & Planning Leader in the Minneapolis Office of LHB, a multi-disciplinary engineering, architecture, and planning firm known for its design leadership. Mr. Lamb has over 30 years of experience in the design and planning of cities, neighborhoods, and districts. He holds a Master of Architecture degree in Urban Design from the University of Colorado Denver, and is credentialed by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). 
He will give us a general overview of the vision for the Blue Line station area plans and describe the  potential station area zoning changes for the Brooklyn Park Station Areas.


antonio rosell 2

Antonio Rosell is founder and Director of Community Design Group, a consulting firm specializing in bicycle and pedestrian planning, placemaking and urban design, and community engagement. In 2015, he was recognized as "Minnesota Planner of the Year" by the Minnesota Chapter of the American Planning Association.  "The choices we make when we design and build our cities determine the future opportunities and quality of life they offer their residents."  He will speak on placemaking and urban design and walking and biking opportunities around the Bottineau Blue Line Corridor.


teshite wakoTeshite Wako is the Finance Director for the Neighborhood Development Center (NDC), whose mission is to build neighborhood economies from within. Mr. Wako is President of the Oromo Chamber of Commerce and a Brooklyn Park Budget Commissioner. 


He will explain how NDC's entrepreneurship training, loans, incubation in ethnic marketplaces, and business development services could help businesses get started, grow, and create jobs along the Bottineau Corridor.



Forum Attendees Suggestions for Development in the Areas around the Light Rail Stations



 Thank you to our Partners


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 hennepin cty community works ndc



  Thank you to our Consultants


zan lhb community design group





Health Care Career Paths and Long-Term-Care Settings Print E-mail


health care team


Tuesday, February 20

6:00 p.m. - Pizza Buffet and Social         6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park Library, Mississippi Room

8500 West Broadway Avenue, Brooklyn Park 55443


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In the past few years, the event MN's state demographers have been discussing for years, has arrived - the retirement of the large cohort born after World War II called the "Baby Boomers."  The aging of the baby boomers brings with it several big changes in MN's work force.  Those include a substantial decline in the work force, an increase in the need for health care, and substantial job opportunities including an especially large growth in the need for health care workers. This forum will center on these changes in both the health care work force and the people needing care.  


lyna nyamwayaLyna Nyamwaya - Registered Nurse, PHN, Doctor of Nursing Practice student


Lyna Nyamwaya is an Administrative Manager at North Memorial Hospital and President of the African Nurses Network.  Lyna will speak on the educational path one can take in nursing, how nursing education can be coordinated with occupational positions of increasing responsibility in nursing, and the characteristics of an outstanding nurse.  She will also discuss the current participation and future potential of immigrants and minorities in nursing and explain the purpose and activities of the African Nurses Network. 


sally schoephoesterSally Schoephoerster - Regional Ombudsman, Office of the Ombudsman for Long-Term Care, Minnesota Board on Aging. 

The Minnesota Board on Aging (MBA) administers the Older Americans Act. As one of its programs, the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program provides a regular presence in residential settings to work with consumers and staff to prevent problems, helps consumers resolve disputes informally with providers, provides education to enable consumers and caregivers to become self-advocates, and advocates for change at a policy level to address systemic problems.  The Office of Ombudsman serves consumers who receive long-term care services in nursing facilities, home and community-based settings such as housing with services (assisted living), and their own private homes.  Sally Schoephoerster is the Ombudsman for Brooklyn Park, Brooklyn Center, Crystal, Maple Grove, New Hope, Osseo, Robbinsdale, and other northern suburbs.  Sally will tell us about the work she does, about the most common problems with which people need help, and which care setting works best for people with different health problems.


Thank you to our Partners  

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Resolutions Contribute to Your Party's Platform, Think Again Brooklyns Print E-mail


Honor Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. by

Presenting a Human Rights Resolution at Your Caucus


Tuesday, January 16martin-luther-king-march 63

6:00 p.m. - Pizza Buffet and Social         6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park Library, Mississippi Room

8500 West Broadway Avenue, Brooklyn Park 55443


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At our upcoming forum on January 16, volunteers and staff working with nonprofit organizations will present resolutions that they would like you to consider presenting at your precinct caucus.  Attendees may speak briefly in favor of or against the resolution as happens at a caucus to give you an idea of how the process works.  Though the resolutions will be based on an organization or group's work, not all of them will have been endorsed by the board or members or by our forum partners.  Take advantage of this wonderful opportunity MN provides for all voters to influence the platforms of their parties.


Think Again MN is a nonpartisan organization.  We'd like to remind you that campaign literature, signs, clothing, or buttons are not allowed at our forums.  Thank you for remembering this requirement.


Topics of Resolutions, Organizations, and Speakers



nelima sitati Affordable Housingsebastian rivera


African Career, Education, and Resource Center

Nelima Sitati Munene - Executive Director


La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles

Sebastian Rivera - Community Organizer




erin mckee


          Topic Not Finalized - Coming Soon


             Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy


                    Erin McKee - Program Director

                 IATP's Farm to Institution Program




MN Provision of Legal Assistance for Immigrants in Jailjannie siebure


St. Alphonsus Social Justice Committee

Jannie Siebure - Committee Member



          linda freemon copy           A Path to Citizenship for
Immigrants, Green Card Holders,

    and Immigrants with Deferred or Temporary Status


   Linda Freemon - Human Rights Committee, League of Women

           Voters/BPOMG VP, Think Again Brooklyns Volunteer



United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights 



Bring Your Own Resolution



If you have a resolution, you would like to try out, bring it along, and present it to a group of people.  Before you decide on presenting it, check to see if it is on your party's platform.


Enter your resolution on the MN Nonpartisan Resolution Form so it can be considered by any political party:


To present a resolution at your party's precinct caucus, you will need to use your party's resolution form:

MN 2018 Republican Resolution Form

MN 2018 DFL Resolution Form

You can print the resolution forms or save them in pdf format on your computer by clicking on the small printer symbol to the top right of the forms.  You can fill out the forms by hand.  It is also fine to tape a printed resolution and statements supporting the resolution onto the form.



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Participate in Shaping Your Government, Think Again Brooklyns Print E-mail


You Can Make a Big Difference in our Future Together!

Participate in Shaping Your Government



Tuesday, November 28

6:00 p.m. - Pizza Buffet and Social         6:30 p.m. - Program


Brooklyn Park City Council Chambers, 5200 85th Avenue N


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Your government will serve you best if you participate in choosing the candidates who will run for office at the city, state, and national levels and contribute to the platform that serves as a guideline for your political party.  The election process starts on February 6 when the caucuses will be meeting.  Think Again Brooklyns will not meet in December to leave your time free for the holidays.  Our November 28th forum will introduce you to ways you can participate in the election process.  Please invite people you know to attend the forum by copying this notice or by sharing the event on Facebook.  We need a lot of people to work together to get elected officials and public policy that will serve us well.


Think Again MN is a nonpartisan organization.  We'd like to remind you that campaign literature, signs, clothing, or buttons are not allowed at our forums.  Thank you for remembering this requirement.

nausheena hussain


                          Moderator - Nausheena Hussain


       Executive Director, Reviving the Islamic Sisterhood for Empowerment



robert marvinMN's Political Organization and the Coming Sequence of Caucuses and Conventions - You don't have to attend all of the conventions, but participating in your precinct caucus and your senate district convention is essential for giving support to your preferred candidates and contributing to your party's platform.  Robert Marvin, currently the Secretary of the Senate District 40 Republican Party, will give you an overview of MN's political units and explain how the caucuses and conventions are related.    Robert Marvin is the Principal Electrical Engineer at R. J. Marvin and Associates.

reva chamblis 2


Supporting your Preferred Candidates - It starts with the caucuses and continues with the city and senate district conventions - Reva Chamblis, LWV/BPOMG member, has been a candidate for Brooklyn Park City Council, & served on the Human Rights Commission, Core Planning Team, & Safety Task Force.


bonnie jude


Developing the Party Platform - the importance of submitting Resolutions - Bonnie Jude. who has led  the Senate District 40 DFL team in choosing the Resolutions to be submitted for many elections, will explain how the team works and how Resolutions get to be part of your party's platform.


Robert Marvin, who has been a member of SD40, CD3, and CD5 GOP Resolution Committees and of the MN GOP State Platform Committee, will explain the process for the GOP Conventions.


 devin monteroAbsentee Voting and Serving as an Election Judge - changes in absentee voting, submitting your vote in person before election day, and the important contribution of election judges from diverse cultures - Devin Montero, Brooklyn Park City Clerk

 kirsten kjome

Candidate Forums - Getting to know the candidates, especially their views on issues important to you. - Kirsten Kjome, President, League of Women Voters Chapter serving Brooklyn Park, Osseo, Maple Grove, & Brooklyn Center




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Domestic Violence Awareness Month Print E-mail


Join Us for National Domestic Violence Awareness Month



2017 Theme


Domestic Violence




Sunday, October 29, 2017
Meeting 2:45 to 5 p.m.


Mississippi Room, Brooklyn Park Library
8500 Broadway Avenue N, Brooklyn Park, MN


Everyone is Welcome and Encouraged to Bring Family and Friends 




Distinguished Guests



keisha t rev emily lagat sam mwange matt rabe


Keisha T. is the Cornerstone Criminal Justice Intervention Advocate.  Keisha will explore the services and resources that are available for victims of domestic violence and child abuse and prevention.


Rev. Emily Lagat is the Founder and President of INSPIRED PRAYER MINISTRY INTERNATIONAL, based in Minnesota, U.S.A.  She is famously known by her saying "Change Your Position."  Rev. Lagat will explore the impact of domestic violence in the community and give a personal testimony.


Mr. Samuel Mwange is the Global Fatherhood Foundation Executive Director and Fatherhood Advocate.  He will explain why men, especially in domestic violence crises, don't disclose and seek help.  He will demonstrate by showing a social experiment and public reaction.


Matt Rabe is the Brooklyn Park Community Engagement Police Officer.  Matt will discuss domestic violence from a police perspective, provide local data, and describe how police respond to reports and calls regarding domestic violence.



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MN's Leading Election System

With Secretary of State Steve Simon


steve simon


Listen to Secretary of State Steve Simon's excellent presentation on MN's outstanding election system emulated by many other states at the Think Again Brooklyns forum January 19, 2016.  Secretary Simon includes ways in which it can be improved, and he explains why it is important to vote.  He concludes with a quote from a tee shirt:  "Failure to vote is not an act of rebellion.  It is an act of surrender."

Get details on how to vote at http://mnvotes.org

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How Oregon Became the Easiest Place to Vote in the US

By Lornet Turnbull
YES! Magazine
October 8, 2016


In January, Oregon became the first state in the country to begin automatically registering eligible citizens to vote when they obtain or renew their driver's licenses or state IDs, completely shifting the burden of voter registration from the individual to the government. 

Read the Article

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