FARGO, N.D. – Forum Communications Co. held its first-ever, mid-year Forum Forward meeting Oct. 5 and 6.
Forum Forward is an internal company leadership program created in 2009 to broaden the leadership skills of the dedicated employees across Forum Communications Co. and to build the company’s next generation of leaders.
The new mid-year event was created on the basis of feedback from former Forum Forward graduates who said it would enhance the leadership program.
Those attending this year’s mid-year meeting were:
- Jennifer McBride, managing editor, The Dickinson (N.D.) Press, and her mentor Matt Von Pinnon, editor, The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead.
- Chris Berdahl, operations and technology manager, The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, and his mentor, Ken Browall, publisher, the Duluth (Minn.) News Tribune. (Ken was unable to make it.)
- Nick Omberg, sales and digital media consultant and online coordinator, Detroit Lakes (Minn.) Newspapers, and his mentor, Phil Frebault, ad director, RiverTown Newspaper Group. (Phil was unable to attend.)
- Chris Welle, product development manager, Interactive Media Group, and his mentor Bill Marcil, publisher, The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. (Bill was unable to attend.)
- Mike Noll, pre-press manager, Forum Communications Printing – Detroit Lakes, Minn., and his mentor Harvey Brock, publisher, The Dickinson (N.D.) Press.
- Stacey Anderson, assignment editor, WDAY, and his mentor Robin Washington, executive editor, Duluth (Minn.) News Tribune.
- Jaclyn King, advertising director, The Pioneer of Bemidji, Minn., and her mentor Zac Ahrens, ad director, Grand Forks (N.D.) Herald.
- Shane Mercer, community content manager, The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, and his mentor Dennis Doeden, publisher, The Pioneer of Bemidji, Minn. (Dennis was unable to attend).
The group toured WDAY, a Forum Communications Co.-owned television station in Fargo, on Oct. 5. The event was coordinated by Operations Manager Sue Eider, who is also a Forum Forward graduate. The group spent the evening learning behind the cameras, viewing the evening news cast live with WDAY personalities Dana Mogck, Kerstin Kealy, John Wheeler, and Trevor Peterson. And the group spent time in the control room.
The group spent the morning of Oct. 6 at Forum Communications Printing’s Fargo plant. FCP Sales Manager Laura Feldner coordinated the visit, which included a tour by Plant Manager Dave Erstad, and presentations from Vice President of Printing Dennis Hall, Student Planner Coordinator Laura Olson, Customer Service Manager/Wholesale Postcard Account Executive Carmen Wallander, also a Forum Forward graduate, Feldner, and Business Development Manager Rick Rea.
The group completed their visit Oct. 6 with the Interactive Media Group headquartered in Fargo. Vice President of Interactive Media Group Paul Amundson hosted the tour, with presentations from:
- Digital Content Operations Manager Devlyn Brooks and Digital Content Development Director Tracy Briggs.
- Jobs HQ Sales Manager Amy Fredrickson and Digital Sales Director Chris Dorsey.
- Ad Operations Manager Jeremy Driscoll and Support Manager Lindsey Guajardo.
- Creative Services Manager Bonnie Cook, also a graduate of Forum Forward).
Forum Forward Coordinator Sonjia Anderson said that the mid-year visit was a great opportunity to have the class come together with their mentors to reconnect and reengage with the Forum Forward process.
Each year, FCC employees have the opportunity to apply for Forum Forward and company executives choose the finalists who undergo a year of site visits, leadership studies and mentoring. Each graduate is assigned a mentor from inside the company, someone who has demonstrated leadership and the ability to help build the skills of their employees. The class then spends a year traveling to various FCC sites and learning from respected leaders in all aspects of the company’s ventures.
The 2011 class began its adventure May 23 at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, where company executives provided an overview of the company and a tour of The Forum. Later, the class met their mentors and participated in a leadership training program.