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Beyond the Skyline

Business & Economics Podcasts

Beyond the Skyline is a podcast from Finance & Commerce newspaper about economic development, commercial real estate and construction in Minnesota. Above all, it’s a show about what’s next, creativity and the innovation in technology that are changing how we work and shaping the future of business throughout Minnesota.

Beyond the Skyline is a podcast from Finance & Commerce newspaper about economic development, commercial real estate and construction in Minnesota. Above all, it’s a show about what’s next, creativity and the innovation in technology that are changing how we work and shaping the future of business throughout Minnesota.


United States


Beyond the Skyline is a podcast from Finance & Commerce newspaper about economic development, commercial real estate and construction in Minnesota. Above all, it’s a show about what’s next, creativity and the innovation in technology that are changing how we work and shaping the future of business throughout Minnesota.






Interview: Matt Collins, shareholder and construction attorney, Fabyanske, Westra, Hart & Thomson

Fabyanske, Westra, Hart & Thomson P.A. is celebrating its 40-year anniversary this month. During its four decades of work, the Minneapolis-based law firm has successfully represented clients in cases and advocated for legislation related to the state’s construction industry. Looking ahead to its next 40 years, the firm plans to continue shaping the real estate and construction industry through its work, says Matt Collins. Collins is a shareholder and an attorney with the firm’s construction...


Interview: Joy Marsh, associate vice president of equity and inclusion, UCare

UCare recently announced that Joy Marsh would serve as its first associate vice president of equity and inclusion. Marsh is filling a new role at UCare, one that meets employee feedback regarding increasing accountability and leadership in the health plan company’s diversity, equity and inclusion work. Her responsibilities and goals reflect this, including those to advance health and racial equity among the nonprofit’s members and the community it serves. Marsh said she will also lead the...


Interview: Brent Kluver, partner and vice president of project development, Ironmark Building Co.

As a business and a builder, Ironmark Building Co. has strong ties to Minneapolis’ Uptown neighborhood. The company, which specializes in urban infill work and other project types, is based at 1710 W. Lake St. in the heart of an Uptown neighborhood that has seen its share of turmoil in recent months. Violent crime and civil unrest have prompted some Uptown businesses to pull up their stakes in the neighborhood. Likewise, citing concerns about public safety and regulatory requirements in...


Interview: Anita Drentlaw, CEO, New Market Bank

As the new CEO of New Market Bank, Anita Drentlaw is carrying on a family tradition that started with her great-grandfather more than 100 years ago. Drentlaw, the bank’s president since 2014, took on the additional title of CEO in August. Under her watch as president, the bank reached $170 million in deposits for the first time. Drentlaw took over the CEO duties from her father, Bob Vogel, who continues as chair of the board. In all, four generations of the family have held leadership...


Inez Long, CEO, Black Business Investment Fund

Last week, the Expanding Black Business Credit (EBBC) announced the launch of its Black Vision Fund, with a goal of reducing the nation’s racial wealth gap. The Black Vision Fund will direct long-term funds to seven Black-led and focused Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), including Minneapolis-based Metropolitan Economic Development Association. The fund’s other CDFI partners include Community First Fund, City First Bank, Hope Credit Union, Texas Mezzanine Fund and...


Interview: James Jones, founder, Minnesota Tribal Contractors Council

As the founder of the newly formed Minnesota Tribal Contractors Council, James Jones is an outspoken advocate for Native American contractors and tribally owned businesses in the construction trades. The nonprofit council, based in northern Minnesota, held its inaugural meeting in May. It offers networking opportunities, mentorship, job and safety training, transportation services, financial education, legislative advocacy, employment resources and other services. Jones has a background in...


Interview: Jennifer Green, CFO, Knutson Construction

Jennifer Green’s construction career has taken her across a good chunk of the country. In her 20 years of experience working on the financial side of the industry, the new CFO of Knutson Construction has held high-level jobs in Illinois, Kentucky and Texas. The journey began in Arkansas, where she was raised and educated. Green added Minnesota to that list when she started with Knutson in March. Based out of Knutson’s Minneapolis office, Green will work with the company’s teams from...


Vivian Fang, associate professor, University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management

There’s no doubt that cryptocurrencies have risen in mainstream popularity over the past year. Still, it’s a market that is largely unregulated, which caused the Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler to recently call the market the “Wild West.” Vivian Fang is an expert in cryptocurrency and blockchain, along with corporate finance and financial accounting. She is an associate professor and the Honeywell Professor in Accounting at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson...


Interview: Jeff Hansen, CEO, Adolfson & Peterson Construction

Just a year after the end of World War II, George Adolfson and Gordon Peterson were onto something big when they founded a small construction business in the basement of Adolfson’s Richfield home. The business, which became known as Adolfson & Peterson Construction, has grown dramatically from those modest beginnings. Now with 600 employees and offices in 11 states, Adolfson & Peterson is a top 100 national contractor. Adolfson & Peterson provides preconstruction, construction and...


Interview: Will Anderson, director of development, Sherman Associates

From housing inspector to senior developer, Will Anderson brings a diverse mix of public and private sector experience to his new role as director of development at Minneapolis-based Sherman Associates. Sherman Associates, a developer of more than 8,000 multifamily units and 600,000 square feet of commercial space, tapped Anderson this month to oversee the company’s development teams. In that role, Anderson leads relationships with cities and finance agencies and drives real estate...


Interview: Lisa Brezonik, CEO, Salo

When it comes to competing for business talent, Minnesota companies are well served to get out of their comfort zone and cast a wide net that extends well beyond their circle of family and business contacts. So says Lisa Brezonik, CEO of Salo, a Minneapolis-based company that helps businesses recruit and retain talent in finance, accounting, human resources and other fields. “If we want to invite more diversity in our workplace, then as we have openings and opportunities to invite new people...


Interview: Chad Anderson, founder, North Lion Capital Management

Even during a year unlike any other, Minneapolis-based North Lion Capital Management found success and opportunities to grow. Chad Anderson founded the hedge fund in 2016 after spending several years at Piper Jaffray Cos., now called Piper Sandler Cos. North Lion primarily focuses on small-cap investing, allowing the fund to be flexible in its investments and address a need that Anderson identified when launching the fund. “People are kind of fascinated by hedge funds and the hedge fund...


Jena Cogswell, senior vice president and director of marketing, Bell Bank

In the 1990s and early 2000s, Jena Cogswell’s prowess on the soccer field took her all the way to a collegiate national championship, a roster spot on the U.S. women’s national team, and a stint with a Boston-based professional team. These days, the Mahtomedi native is taking her competitive juices to the business world. In her new role as senior vice president and director of marketing for Bell Bank, Cogswell oversees marketing for all of Bell’s divisions, including her home turf at the...


Interview: Peter Hilger, faculty director & instructor, U of M Construction & Facility Mgmnt program

Solutions for some of the construction industry’s most pressing challenges are starting to materialize while others are showing signs that they’re here to stay. As a construction professional for decades, Peter Hilger has direct insight into what’s driving the issues and how they may be alleviated. High material prices, especially for lumber, present one of the leading challenges. Prices are just starting to stabilize as production increases. However, one of the industry’s other challenges —...


Interview: Lydia Major, landscape architecture and planning studio leader, LHB

Landscape architect Lydia Major recently received a career achievement award from the Minnesota Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Major is LHB’s landscape architecture and planning studio leader, where she oversees a team of mainly women in the firm’s Minneapolis and Duluth offices. Her leadership and mentorship of this team — which is unique in the industry — helped Major attain the award, she says. Major began at LHB in 2007, after a former co-worker asked her to...


Interview: Alan Arthur, CEO, Aeon

Alan Arthur, a longtime developer and advocate for affordable housing in the Twin Cities, is moving on after more than three decades as CEO of Minneapolis-based Aeon, a prolific provider of homes for low- and moderate-income households. Aeon recently announced that Arthur is “transitioning out of his role” with the company. He’s expected to stay on the job through the end of the year as he assists with the search for a successor, among other duties. Arthur became president and CEO of Aeon in...


Interview: Kelly Veit, CEO, Veit Cos.

Kelly Veit took a hammer to the proverbial glass ceiling last month when she became the new CEO of Veit Cos., a Rogers-based specialty contracting firm. In announcing her new role, the company noted that Kelly Veit is the first woman CEO in the 90-plus year history of the family-owned business, and one of the few women to hold that title among big companies in the U.S. construction industry. Kelly Veit fills the shoes of Vaughn Veit, the company’s CEO since 1975. Vaughn Veit’s grandfather,...


Interview: Julian White, partner, Nokomis Energy

Along with partners Brendan Dillon and Dan Rogers, Julian White started their company, Nokomis Energy, around four years ago when they noticed a shift in the solar energy industry — a change that came with a business opportunity. Larger solar developers were pulling out of the industry due to narrowing revenue and increasing project difficulty. White had experience doing this work on a national scale and launched his own company to bring national experience to a regional market. To date,...


Interview: Kristin Myhre, president, Eagle Ridge Partners

As president of Eagle Ridge Partners, Kristin Myhre oversees a Minneapolis-based development, acquisition and asset management company with a portfolio of more than 3 million square feet of space in the Twin Cities. Myhre joined Eagle Ridge in 2012. During her time with the company, she has completed 2.6 million square feet of acquisitions and 1.3 million square feet of dispositions. In the following interview with reporter Brian Johnson, Myhre talks about current market trends in commercial...


Interview: Ted Bickel and Jeff Budish, multifamily team, Colliers

As brokers on Colliers’ multifamily team, Ted Bickel and Jeff Budish have first-hand knowledge of who’s investing in the Twin Cities real estate market – and, most importantly, why. Investors view the Twin Cities metro region favorably compared to other metros of its size, thanks to the region’s stability, numerous transit-oriented developments, a general pro-development climate and more. However, this wasn’t enough to help office and retail real estate safely weather the pandemic’s impact,...