NOW OPEN: Strong Farm Incubator

In partnership with Strengthen ND and Baldwin Greenhouse

With a vision to shift how rural residents live and build wealth, Strengthen ND and a team of small producers and local foods stakeholders have been working to answer this question: How might a modern rural repopulation movement reshape and reignite ND’s local food system by challenging myths/misconceptions about how food can be grown, vertically integrated, and leveraged to enhance the short- and long-term ripple effects of more condensed and robust statewide local food chain?

Strengthen ND has been working to gather current and former farmer input on the past, current, and future statuses of family farms; partner and stakeholder limitations and opportunities; and community and agriculturally-based economic development planning to understand and catalyze progress around local foods and the revitalization of small family farms. The extensive work has culminated in a five-year, multifaceted plan to revitalize the future of family farms across rural North Dakota, with the critical piece of that vision being a rural incubator farm.

Bush Prize: North Dakota

In partnership with Strengthen ND and the Bush Foundation

The Bush Prize celebrates organizations that are highly valued within their communities and have a track record of successful community problem-solving.

Bush Prize grants are flexible and can be used to build up reserves or test that next big idea or whatever else would best support the organization’s ongoing good work. The grant amounts are up to 25% of an organization’s most recent fiscal year expenses, with a maximum of $500,000.

The Bush Prize is done in partnership between the Bush Foundation and Strengthen ND.  Strengthen ND will select and announce the Bush Prize winners, as well as provide any support along the way.

Launching Leadership Coming May 30 - June 3, 2023

Launching Leadership is a youth leadership program that coordinates several regional youth (9-12 grade) leadership institutes throughout the state of North Dakota.  Spring/Summer session spots are now available!

Technical Resources & Assistance Available for Economic Development and Native Entrepreneurs!

Promoting economic development and supporting local entrepreneurs is a crucial part of creating sustainable and successful communities. Natasha offers technical assistance services to help facilitate this process, with industry-leading expertise in business planning, market research, and economic development strategy.

Economic development agencies and native entrepreneurs should not miss the opportunity to capitalize on her knowledge in order to gain a competitive advantage and thrive in today’s rapidly changing economy! Her assistance can help bridge the gap between individuals’ experience and ambition, turning dreams into profitable realities that benefit everyone involved!

Register for the Nonprofit Certificate Program in 2023

Registering for a nonprofit certificate program can be one of the best investments you can make if you aspire to work in the nonprofit sector!

Gaining knowledge of the fundamental principles that guide effective nonprofits is essential to have an impact on the community. This program will provide an interactive and productive learning experience, allowing participants to learn from subject-matter experts and industry practitioners with years of experience working in the field!

Everyone involved benefits; learners grow professionally and socially, firms find qualified talent, trainers extend their network and knowledge base, and ultimately, communities receive sustainable solutions to succeed.

Strengthen ND in the Media

Click below to see why Strengthen ND’s work is making headlines!

Stories of Impact - Learn more about our work

Click below to learn more about our work today!


Strengthen ND is a dynamic, multi-faceted and well-connected organization that works across North Dakota (ND) to elevate nonprofits and rural communities to support a high quality of life and resources for vulnerable populations through community development.


Strengthen ND’s staff encompasses more than 75 years of experience in rural capacity building, planning, development, and placemaking. Through their experience, candor, and “let’s get it done” attitude, Strengthen ND’s team has had the privilege of learning and exercising the “ND Way” of problem solving. We’ve learned from communities that it is imperative to exercise a bottom-up approach, prioritize listening, facilitate community buy-in, and that nearly every disagreement can be resolved through a robust conversation over a shared plate of hotdish. In short, our experience has shaped our values and approach – the actual HOW of Strengthen ND’s work. The way in which we approach our mission is in line with our organizational values:

Meeting Communities & People Where They Are

We believe that every community is different, every organization is different, and every individual is different; therefore, a blanket approach does not best support ND. We “meet them where they are” in terms of attitudes, beliefs, skills, capacity, and available resources

Deploying a Pragmatic Approach

Our approach to supporting communities, organizations, and leaders focuses on inspiring them to think bigger and differently, while also cheerleading small, incremental victories achieved through practical tools and strategies.

Being Resourceful

Strengthen ND’s resources are limited. It is imperative that we are resourceful and leverage all of the other great service providers and assets within ND to create a web of resources and providers that can support organizations and communities to deepen the level of impact made.

Meeting People & Communities Where They Are

Strengthen ND is an equal opportunity provider.

Change Network

North Dakota Change Network is a year-long program that will help you build the techniques and networks you need to make the places you live and work more inclusive.

Community Succession Planning

Strengthen ND’s community succession planning process is designed and facilitated around developing five-year reasonable and achievable plans for communities through a focused process including assessing and goal-setting around Community Amenities & Engagement, Creative Placemaking, Economic Status & Growth, and Forward-Thinking Leadership

Community-Centered AmeriCorps

Through the support of AmeriCorps, Strengthen ND assists North Dakota communities to access the people-power they need to undertake community projects by providing individuals to build their community’s capacity


Strengthen rural North Dakota.

Communities with Opportunities

Communities with Opportunities is about fostering the relationship between rural North Dakotan, small communities, and prospective newcomers. By showcasing things that make each community great along with each unique and exciting opportunity, Strengthen ND’s goal is to keep rural communities thriving by encouraging growth!

Strengthen ND’s technical assistance is delivered through customized engagements to accomplish organizational and program-oriented objectives. In each project, we begin with a discovery period to work closely with the organization to design a process that is well-timed and suited to the people within the community, how the community functions, and the objectives of the work.

Find Your Book Here


Board and Staff Development

Strengthen ND places a high priority on being connected to leadership in key issues and practices for maximizing the talents, strengths and efforts of an organization’s most valuable resource – the people who govern, lead and support programs to produce effective, meaningful and measurable impact: the board and staff. We work to do this through customized board and staff development projects, designed to leverage and build effectiveness and teamwork.

Executive Search

Since our inception, Strengthen ND has prided itself on meeting people and organizations where they are; meaning, we are skilled at assessing and understanding organizational and individual capacity. It is with this value that we approach executive search processes. Below is the typical process our organization follows to identify qualified candidates to best support your organization.


* We understand what it takes to live and work in North Dakota;

* We understand what it takes to lead and progress in North Dakota;

* Hiring committee experience specific to higher-level directors and management to fully understand what North Dakota organizations need.

To learn more, contact Megan Langley at

Program Design and Evaluation

Strengthen ND will work with your organization to develop customized evaluation processes to illustrate the value and impact of your programs for the purposes of informing program design and future development, as well as to share information more effectively with boards, funders and others closely connected to the organization. Conversely, Strengthen ND is skilled at working with private family foundations, trusts, corporations, and community foundations to design grantmaking strategies, mechanisms, and collateral to support targeted charitable investments.

Grant Making and Charitable Investments

Strengthen ND believes investing primarily in North Dakota’s rural communities, and through our the Creative Community Solutions grant making program, established in 2022, our organization is able to support a variety of programs and projects across the state. This is unlike any other grant making program, we want to hear why your project is needed in your community and how it can be sustained.

Strategic and Organizational Action Planning

Strategic planning is the architecture of successful organizations. Strengthen ND’s approach to strategic planning involves a collaborative process of internal and external review and strategic thinking to generate a realistic and practical guide for board and staff in achieving their visionary and operational goals. As you transition from strategic planning to implementation, your first task is to get specific about the work that needs to be done. Practically speaking, this means going through the process of translating the multi-year, high-level strategic goals articulated in your plan into specific initiatives that your organization will undertake in the coming 12- to 18-month period. Breaking down your long-term goals into timely, digestible and definable segments that align with your day-to-day activities is something that Strengthen ND is equipped to help you undertake.

Community Succession Planning

One of the most important responsibilities for community leaders is to help plan for the community’s future, including anticipating and identifying key leadership transitions, economic trends, quality of life shifts, and growth opportunities. Strengthen ND’s community succession planning process is designed and facilitated around developing five-year reasonable and achievable plans for communities through a focused process including assessing and goal-setting around Community Amenities & Engagement, Creative Placemaking, Economic Status & Growth, and Forward-Thinking Leadership.

Economic Development & Community Planning

Strengthen ND works with your community organizations such as Chambers and EDC’s to determine appropraite solutions to community needs. Strengthen ND’s approach will allow all opinions to be heard and considered.

Meeting Facilitation

Strengthen ND works with organizations to develop and implement meetings, retreats, and other forums for specific planning, problem solving, strategizing, or decision-making purposes. Strengthen ND’s approach involves thoughtful planning and preparation and developing agendas to encourage participation and generate useful plans for next steps.

Organizational Succession Planning

One of the most important responsibilities for nonprofit boards is selecting the organization’s next executive director. The search and transition can be complex, and both require careful planning, well before a planned – or unplanned – departure occurs. Strengthen ND can help your organization with succession planning to ensure that this is a smooth, cohesive transition.


Learn more about how we could help!

USDA Tribal Toolkit

With this great toolkit, Tribal Governments can learn more about USDA’s programs and grants.

PESTEL Analysis

A PESTEL Analysis is an important planning tool used for understanding the external macro-level external factors that impact the working of an organization.

Funding Opportunity Database

Utilize this resource to access funding opportunities relevant to rural North Dakota!

Prioritization Exercises

Do you need an exercise to help prioritize your organization’s activities? This one is for you!

Developing a Case Statement

The questions in this tool can help guide the creation of an organization’s Case Statement.

Key Responsibilities Audit

A Key Responsibilities Audit is a simple tool that can be utilized to estimate how much time you spend working on a specific area of operations.


Learn more about our community outreach!

Who is Strengthen ND?

Who is Strengthen ND?

When it comes to building strong communities, every little bit helps. That's why organizations like Strengthen ND are so important. This nonprofit works tirelessly to support local businesses, bring people together, and create a better future for North Dakota as a...

Let’s Talk About Launching Leadership

Let’s Talk About Launching Leadership

Strong communities are the backbone of any society and are essential for the progress and prosperity of a nation. The development of a community is not only about improving its infrastructure or logistics but also stems from the individual growth of its members....

Let’s Talk About AmeriCorps

Let’s Talk About AmeriCorps

As a community, we often forget the valuable contributions that volunteers make to society. One program that has been a significant supporter of the local communities is AmeriCorps. AmeriCorps offers individuals the opportunity to serve communities across the United...

Bush Prize: North Dakota Winners

Bush Prize: North Dakota Winners

NEWS RELEASE For immediate release, October 17, 2023 Contact information Megan Langley Executive Director Strengthen ND 701.303.0840 Two Organizations Named Bush Prize: North Dakota Winners Minot, N.D. — Strengthen ND and the Bush Foundation are...

Let’s Discuss Community Development

Let’s Discuss Community Development

Important Topics in Community Development Civic engagement is the backbone of prosperous communities. When citizens come together to participate in the decision-making process of their community, there is an increase in social capital, trust, and overall community...

Strengthen ND & AmeriCorps

Strengthen ND & AmeriCorps

Strengthen ND is a nonprofit organization that has been working tirelessly to strengthen North Dakota communities by providing them with the necessary resources and people-power. A vital part of its work is its partnership with AmeriCorps, a federal program that...

Fanning the Flames of Hope in North Dakota

Fanning the Flames of Hope in North Dakota

As U.S. suicides hit an all-time high, Strengthen ND announces partnership to spread hope. Fargo, ND — Today, Strengthen ND is announcing a new partnership with the Human Flourishing Lab to study and promote hope across North Dakota. “We couldn’t be more optimistic...

22 North Dakotans Selected to Change Network Learning Experience

22 North Dakotans Selected to Change Network Learning Experience

Minot, ND – Twenty-two North Dakotan change makers from across the state have been selected to join the 2023-2024 North Dakota Change Network, a yearlong learning and support experience for individuals creating more equitable, accessible, and welcoming environments...