12 businesswomen inducted into Minnesota hall of fame


There's Genevieve Bolger, a legend in the Minnesota printing industry. Then there's Sally Sandoe, who quickly turned Brum & Anderson Public Relations into a top PR agency in the state. And of course Rose Totino, the woman behind the Totino's frozen pizza many people know today.

Those are three of the 12 women inducted into the Minnesota Women Business Owners Hall of Fame Thursday – a group "selected because of their stature in their era and their accomplishments."

Forum News Service highlighted Mary Moldenhauer, a single mother and daughter of an Ojibwe woman that now owns GreyStar Electronics – which recorded revenues of $1.5 million last year. Jill Johnson, the event's organizer, tells Forum less than 3 percent of women-owned businesses cross the $1 million revenue milestone.

The Pioneer Press highlights Amanda Lyles Weir, known as the first successful black female business owner in Minnesota. She was born before the Civil War and persevered through the death of her two infant children to start The Hair Bazaar, which offered hair care products and styling to black women.

An associate professor at the University of St. Thomas' Opus College of Business tells the Star Tribune honoring the businesswomen pushes the idea that diversity in business – doing things differently than men would – is a good thing.

"Some of these women blazed new trails in non-traditional industries such as construction and manufacturing. Some built million-dollar businesses in hard economies," the site says. "All passed along their wisdom to their daughters and mentees to make a difference for generations to come."

The full list of inductees:
– Ethel Arnold
– Genevieve Bolger
– Lou Burdick
– Marilyn Bryant
– Judith Corson
– Cynthia Kelly
– Amanda Lyles Weir
– Mary Moldenhauer
– Sally Sandoe
– Marlene Smith
– Rose Totino
– Jeanne Voigt

The ceremony was held Thursday night at Cargill's headquarters in Wayzata, Minnesota.

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