Save the Date for 2017 Rural Community Health Worker Conference, Oct. 20

Northwest Technical College in Bemidji will gather dozens of community health workers from across Minnesota in October for the college’s 2nd Annual Rural Community Health Worker Conference.

Registration Open
Online registration is open; register before Oct. 5 to take advantage of early-bird pricing.

The conference is set for Oct. 20 and will be held at the Bemidji Eagles Club, located at 1270 Neilson Ave SE. Registration for the one-day conference begins at 8:30 a.m. and the program concludes at 4 p.m.

The conference is intended for employers and potential employers of community health workers, and to provide community health workers with opportunities to network with colleagues and learn strategies for advocating for their own roles in the health care system, at work and in their communities.

Presenters from a broad spectrum of health care-related fields, including NTC faculty, Sanford Health employees and other community health professionals from the region, will present on subjects including community wellness grants, an update on the current status of and opportunities in community health worker programs in Minnesota, a session on Minnesota’s community health worker certificate curriculum and how community health workers can coordinate with independent living services.

To support certified health education specialists, Northwest Technical College will offer 6.0 Category I continuing education units that will count toward National Commission for Health Education Credentialing requirements. Contact NTC for additional details on continuing education credits.

The conference is made possible by support from the Minnesota Department of Health, Sanford Health and the Northern Dental Access Center.


  • “What is a Community Health Worker” — Wendy Potratz, Northwest Technical College
  • “Community Wellness Grant Supports Community Health Worker Pilot at Ottertail County Public Health” — Kristin Erickson (PartnerSHIP4Health), Jody Lien (Ottertail County Public Health), Megan Curan de Nieto (CHW Solutions)
  • “The Pioneering of a Community-Based Co-Supervisory CHW Model: Co-Developing CHWs as Generalists” — Jean Gunderson (Mayo Clinic)
  • “CHW Programs in Minnesota: Current Status and Opportunities” — Will Wilson (Minnesota Department of Health)
  • “Rural CHW Networking” — Connie Norman (Sanford Health), Erin Geiger (Community Resource Connections), Angie Keprios (Northern Dental Access Clinic)
  • “CHW Education: The Minnesota CHW Certificate Curriculum” — Anne Ganey (CHW Alliance)
  • “Lessons Learned from Engaging a Community Health Worker” — Mary Rapps (Generations Health)
  • “Coordinating Community Health Within Independent Living Services to Better Empower People” — Heather Everson (Options Resource Center for Independent Living)

Registration Information

The conference carries a $25 registration fee, which includes lunch. An early-bird rate of $15 is available for anyone who registers prior to Oct. 5. Registration for attendees interested in obtaining Continuing Education Unit credit is an additional $25. Attendees must be at least 18 years of age.


Oct. 20 – 8:30 a.m.–4 p.m. —Northwest Technical College hosts 2nd Annual Rural Community Health Worker Conference. A conference for employers and potential employers of community health workers, and for working CHWs to learn new skills and network with colleagues. Location: Bemidji Eagles Club, 1270 Neilson Ave SE, Bemidji. Admission: $15 until Oct. 5, $25 beginning Oct. 6. Additional $25 for Continuing Education Unit certificate. Contact: Wendy Potratz, instructor, Northwest Technical College, (218) 333-6648,


Northwest Technical College, located in northern Minnesota’s lake district, is an open, inviting technological learning organization. For more than 40 years, the college has valued life-long learning and the worth and dignity of all people. The college serves 900 students with a high-quality education, an open-enrollment policy and affordable tuition. NTC offers nearly 60 degree, diploma and certificate programs in areas such as business, health, human and protective services and environmental and industrial technology. Classes are offered on the Bemidji campus, online, or as a combination of both. NTC is a member of the colleges and universities of Minnesota State.