Connect Business Magazine

Since 1994: The Magazine for Growing Businesses in Southern Minnesota

Archives for the ‘Feature Story’ Category

David Milbrath

Jan 2018 • Category: Feature Story

Runner-Up: Business Person of the Year 2018
Springfield, Minnesota sits quietly on the edge of Brown County in the southern part of the state, surrounded by prime agricultural land. It is a rural community, population of 2,200…give or take. But in the heart of this small town is a giant talent, David Milbrath of Prairie Plans Asset Management. Milbrath founded the company in 1992 and today it manages $500 million for households throughout the country.



Mike, Pat and Todd Redig

Jan 2018 • Category: Feature Story

Runner-Up: Business Person of the Year 2018
It was 68 years ago, back in 1949, that a Norwegian immigrant found his way to Minnesota Lake, Minnesota. Building a life there, by designing and building homes for others, as Nordaas American Homes. “Haakon’s story was almost a rags to riches to almost back to rags story. He was on the downside of business when we got involved. It’s taken a lot of years to bring it back. His thought and idea was that you work hard and when you do something, you do it right.”



St. Peter Food Co-op

Nov 2017 • Category: Feature Story

When Margo O’Brien first relocated to St. Peter, Minnesota from Boulder, Colorado, she was taken aback by rows and rows of peanut butter… in buckets. At the original St. Peter Food Co-op, founded in 1979, peanut butter buckets made up most of the bulk food department.



Dulcimer Medical Center

Nov 2017 • Category: Feature Story

Dr. Steven Parnell shows off Dulcimer Medical Center like a proud homeowner giving a tour to a guest. Each room at the Fairmont, Minn., clinic has a title and distinct theme. This, he explains, keeps the clinic from seeming too, well, clinical. The Sports room features athletic equipment and memorabilia from local teams, including assorted red and white Fairmont homecoming buttons dating back to 1951 that a patient gave to Parnell.



F/X Fusion & Graif Clothing

Sep 2017 • Category: Feature Story

Neck ties are how Randy Appel made his mark in the apparel world. Family ties, though, make up the fabric of his being. “I do all of this for the family,” reflects Appel, as he looks around at the rows and rows of ties, shirts and sweaters that will soon be shipped out to destinations all around the world from his 12,000sf distribution center in North Mankato. Appel owns F/X Fusion, an international apparel designer, manufacturer and distributor.



Welsh Heritage Farms

Sep 2017 • Category: Feature Story

The story behind the creation of Welsh Heritage Farms is, well, a juicy one. It was not Larry and Pam Harbos’ idea to start an orchard 36 years ago. The credit for the enterprise goes to Pam’s mother, Edythe Davis Peterson. Pam explains, “I grew up in Lake Crystal, and Larry grew up on a farm near Hanska. We were teachers; I taught in an elementary school in Prior Lake, and Larry taught high school in Jordan.