Christine Fruechte & Ellen Walthour

Dear Friends,

We have had an incredible year of milestones that we are proud to share with you. First, three of our earliest participants have graduated from college and secured full-time positions working in the marketing and advertising industry. This is only the beginning. In the next couple of years our alumni talent pool will continue to grow as more of our rising stars graduate from college, ready to take the world by storm.

During this record-breaking year, we have served 720 students, engaged over 250 industry volunteers, placed 67 interns across the Twin Cities, and partnered with 46 agencies, 19 corporate partners and 207 individual donors. We even had a record number of attendees at our Fearless Conversation event.

We are proud to also share a tremendous highlight from The BrandLab year: the alumni program Connect, that will serve as a bridge for our participants. No longer just a dream, Connect is a thriving program that ensures we not only provide internships for creative students when they are in high school, but we put them on a path to a creative career throughout college. In this report, please take a moment to learn about the expanding Connect program and the many ways you can get involved.

Our Fearless work has expanded significantly as well. As more talented TBL students graduate from college and find work, we want to make sure they are set up for success. The BrandLab now offers ongoing consultation and workshops to ensure workplace readiness. This includes fostering an inclusive culture free of bias, where everyone has an opportunity to rise within an organization.

Every year The BrandLab inches closer to its vision, to make our great state the place where talk about diversity becomes action, and we develop the most inclusive and diverse creative industry in the nation. Inspired by the momentum of this banner year, we are extremely proud to share our annual report with you.

Thank you for helping to change the face and voice of our industry to be more reflective of the world we live in.


Christine Fruechte
Board of Directors Chair, The BrandLab
Chief Executive Officer, Colle+McVoy
Ellen Walthour
Executive Director, The BrandLab