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Meet the Director Monday | Rusty Crotty

Meet the Director Monday: Rusty Crotty

This week’s “Meet the Director Monday” is Rusty Crotty. Rusty is an optometrist at Lifetime Vision Center here in Auburn and has served on the board for three years.

Rusty was born and raised right here in Auburn, NE. He left to go to college, eventually going onto optometry school. After school, Rusty then came to Auburn to work with his father. He met his lovely wife Bobbie, and together they have two precious daughters. Ari is three and Cora is one, and Rusty loves spending his free time with them. When he is not working or spending time with family, Rusty enjoys playing softball and in the summer, sand volleyball. Rusty is an avid sports fan and when asked the question “Husker Football or Husker Volleyball?” Husker Football wins with little contest.

Rusty became active with the Auburn Development Council because he was looking for opportunities to help out the community after he moved back. Rusty joined the council mainly because he was looking for a way to make the biggest impact he could on Auburn’s future. To Rusty being a member of the Auburn Development Council means that he cares about the future of the community. “Too many people complain about things and don’t take action, so this is me taking action,” he said. Rusty loved growing up in Auburn and he wants to continue to make Auburn an awesome community for his own kids to grow up in.

While Rusty enjoys everything being a board member of ADC has to offer, his favorite part about this role is: “Being in the know and being involved with all the things going on in our community.” When asked the question, “Who is someone you look up to on the ADC Board?” Rusty said Auburn Development Council President, Leslie Clark. “She has no fear and is jumping in and making things happen.” Rusty admires Leslie’s can-do attitude and positive spirit. Looking at the future of the Auburn Development Council Rusty claims; “We’ve got a good buzz going with our team right now. The Auburn Development Council plays an important part in the quality of life in Auburn, both now and in the years ahead.”

Rusty Crotty

Meet the Director Monday | Tim Becker

Meet the Director Monday: Tim Becker

This week’s “Meet the Director Monday” is Tim Becker. Tim works at FAST Global Solutions as the Facility Manager and has been serving on ADC for over five years.

Tim grew up in Fairbury, Nebraska, a small town much like Auburn. He attended high school in Crete, Nebraska and then went on to college in Indiana. He moved all over the midwest and lived in Wisconsin and Iowa before returning to Nebraska where he and his wife, Angie raised their four kids, Zachary, Amelia, Kyra, and Kyle. He and his family first moved to Auburn to be a little closer to home, and Tim joined the workforce at Ariens Manufacturing which has since transitioned into FAST Global Solutions.

Tim wanted to be involved and saw the Auburn Development Council as an opportunity to help other businesses and to also assist the community to grow in any way possible. Tim values recruiting and retaining workforce employees. He sees ADC as a way to make Auburn a more attractive place to live so that they can be competitive against other communities to bring in and retain employees and community members.

When asked “Who on the ADC Board do you look up to?” Tim replied that he looks up to Kim Beger and Leslie Clark. “Kim is the overall glue of the organization and helps to maintain old traditions but isn’t afraid to try new things either. Leslie is new and has helped to kickstart the organization to improve the quality of life locally.”

ADC has exciting things in the works and Tim looks forward to seeing LB-840 passed, hopefully in the near future. LB840 is a financing option for local businesses as well as supporting an economic developer for the community. Tim believes this option will help make quality and prompt improvements to the town and a great opportunity to help Auburn grow to its full potential.

Meet the Director Monday

Meet the Director Monday: Kim Beger

This week’s “Meet the Director Monday” is Auburn Development Council Secretary/Treasurer Kim Beger. Kim works as the Administrative Assistant for the City of Auburn. She has served on the board since 2013.

Kim was born and raised right here in Auburn, NE. She left Auburn soon after graduating high school. After her worldly adventures as a military dependent, Kim returned to Auburn in 1992. While living in Auburn she met her husband Nate Beger, who works in operations for the Cooper Nuclear Station. Kim and Nate raised their son Xavier and have continued to build their life in Auburn. In her spare time, Kim enjoys traveling. Italy has been her favorite destination to date. When she isn’t traveling, Kim volunteers for different organizations in the Auburn Community as well as serving as a Nebraska volunteer coordinator for the Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation with her husband Nate.

Kim’s time with the Auburn Development Council first started as part of her job as administrative assistant. However the more she learned about economic development and the impact ADC has on the community of Auburn, she became more invested.

“Auburn Development Council is an important organization that plays a crucial role in the vitality of Auburn and surrounding communities.” -Kim Beger

To Kim, being a director of ADC means being connected to regional and state organizations, to learn as much as she can about opportunities that Auburn can be involved with or learn from. When asked her favorite part about being an ADC Director, Kim says she loves bringing information and new ideas to ADC which in turn could benefit Auburn. She enjoys working with the business community and connecting them to people who can help solve problems. “If I can’t help someone solve a problem, I can find someone who can.”

When asked who is someone she looks up to on ADC, she said Tim. “I admire Tim because of his ability to think analytically. He is not only a rational thinker but he is able to list pros and cons in every decision. We know that behind every vote, he is always making an educated choice.”

The future is bright and busy for ADC. When asked what excites her about the future of Auburn Development Council, she enthusiastically responds. “I am excited about our current directors and those who we will continue to add. The vision and the commitment the directors have for the future of Auburn is inspiring. ADC continues to grow as the umbrella that economic development is under continues to expand. We are able to adapt to the ever evolving needs that businesses in our community continue to have.

Meet The Director Monday

Meet the Director: Leslie Clark

This week’s “Meet the Director Monday” is Auburn Development Council President, Leslie Clark. Leslie has served on the council for one year and works as the administrative coordinator at the Auburn Berean Church.

Leslie Clark is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has lived in the midwest for 35 years and has lived in Auburn for the last 15 of those years. Leslie adore’s her superman husband, Kent Clark and together they have two adult children Noah and Lillia. Leslie and her husband Kent moved to Auburn to lead the ministry of the Auburn Berean Church. Leslie joined the Auburn Development Council after she had just completed the Nemaha County Leader Class and the Honeybees in the Heartland project. She was looking for greater ways to have a positive impact in the Auburn community, and wanted to continue to be a part of creating a better and brighter future for Auburn. ADC’s mission and purpose fit into those goals perfectly, making her want to be a part of ADC’s team.

To Leslie, being a member of the Auburn Development Council means that she is working on behalf of Auburn and its business community to help build and grow a strong economy. “I’m working in collaborative efforts to help market the Auburn area as a great place for business and entrepreneurial growth.” To Leslie, being an ADC director means that she has the opportunity to help enhance the quality of life for current and future citizens of Auburn.

While Leslie loves being a Board Member on ADC her favorite part is the opportunities she has to get to know many of the amazing community members of Auburn. When asked who she looks up to on the ADC Board she said Kim Beger. “I admire her persistence in seeking a better future for the community of Auburn. She continues to pursue a brighter and better future for Auburn every single day.”

The Auburn Development Council has a lot in the works. When asked what excites her about the future of the Auburn Development Council she has nothing but positive things to say. “Once accepted and approved, I’m excited to begin implementing all elements of our 3 year strategic plan. It will definitely take a lot of work, investment, and collaborative effort within the community, but I believe the end results of a revitalized downtown, passionate, community pride, a stronger and thriving economy in Auburn and more will most certainly be worth the effort.”

RFI Fellows: Mid-Summer Update

Our Summer in Auburn Continues…

Hello Auburn, we are back again to give you an update on everything we have been doing for the past week. We’ve recently been spending our time going around to the local businesses that participated in the ADC’s Double Down gift card program to do a follow up survey about how it has benefitted their business during their time of need. We have loved visiting the local shops and eateries that Auburn has to offer. We have met some great business owners and have uncovered several hidden gems within the community.

Along with surveying the local business owners about the gift card program, we have spent a few afternoons on the Honeybee Scavenger Hunt. As interest of art and beauty continues to grow in the community, curiosity about the scavenger hunt continues to grow across Nebraska. Leslie Clark, the president of the Auburn Development Council, has been involved in several phone and radio interviews including one with the Nebraska Life magazine. You can find her interview and the pictures that we, along with one of our community leaders Julia Oestmann, took of the bees in an article in next month’s issue! The bee scavenger hunt is a great way to get outside and enjoy the community.

We have some exciting new projects that are in the works and we can’t wait to share them all with you soon. We hope you had a great Independence Day!

See you again next week,

Brittney and Emma

Our RFI Experience

Meet Brittney

Hi Auburn! I am Brittney Emerson. I am from Mullen, Nebraska and am currently a Junior at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where I study Agriculture Education-Leadership and minor in Horticulture. I have a passion for supporting rural communities and am excited to be here this summer! I grew up on a cow-calf operation in the Sandhills of Nebraska, so this is my first summer in farm country! We also own and operate a ranch equipment business. We run about 300 head of cattle and still enjoy the “cowboy” way of life. Some of my favorite things include working on the ranch, country music and Disney movies. I am excited to spend my summer doing something new and serving the city of Auburn in any way possible.

Meet Emma

Hello Auburn! My name is Emma Hoffschneider and this summer I will be working as a Rural Futures Institute Fellow with the Auburn Development Council. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with ADC and the community of Auburn through the RFI Fellows Program. I am excited to learn more about the Community of Auburn and explore all that it has to offer over the next few months. I am from Burwell, Nebraska and will be going into my Sophomore year of college at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I am majoring in Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Communications and Agricultural Economics. A few things you should know about me is that I love the outdoors, have a strong addiction to coffee, a committed relationship to ice cream, and am crazy competitive when it comes to any type of athletic event. I can’t wait to meet more people in the community and look forward to visiting the local businesses soon. Feel free to stop and say hi if you see me out and about, I would love to meet you and visit about your life in Auburn.

Our RFI Fellowship

This summer we are summer fellows through the Rural Futures Institute at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Your Auburn Development Council decided to take a chance on us and allowed us to intern for them through the RFI Fellows Program.

We have been working with Kim Beger, Leslie Clark, Jamie Aue and Julia Oestman. We have been here for about three weeks now and are loving it! During the first two weeks we had to quarantine before we could immerse ourselves into the community. During that time we stayed busy researching LB840. LB840 is a funding opportunity for economic development within Nebraska communities, and can be used for loans and grants for local businesses as well as a town’s aesthetic, such as greenery, upkeep and repair of store fronts. After our initial research, we then contacted the 72 communities across Nebraska who have LB840 in place to see how it has benefited their communities.

We have found that it has brought only positives to those communities that have decided to implement it. We hope that the research and resources we gained will prove to be useful as the ADC moves forward. Starting this week our quarantine has been lifted! We can’t wait to do some exploring of the town and have found the city and the few people we have met in Auburn to be everything we hoped for and more.

The beauty of Auburn gives off a hometown feel, welcoming us with open arms. With many green spaces, parks, recreational areas, lakes and rivers in and around Auburn, it is easy to appreciate the many things that you have to offer and we are blessed that you have shared them with us! We look forward to a fun-filled summer, and can’t wait to meet you all!

The Auburn Development Council Welcomes RFI Interns

We’re welcoming the Auburn RFI Fellows who are focusing on economic development, entrepreneurship, and workforce training.

Students: Brittney Emerson, Emma Hoffschneider
Innovators: Julia Oestmann, Kim Beger

“I am not afraid of adapting and overcoming difficult circumstances that are in front of me — a trait that runs deep in every rural community across Nebraska.” — Emma Hoffschneider

The primary project will involve creating a great marketing and research effort with a strong community campaign to secure passage of LB840, the local option municipal economic development act that authorizes incorporated cities to collect and appropriate local tax dollars for economic development purposes. Additional projects will include entrepreneurship, coding camp and mobile STEM lab promotion, business recruitment, and workforce training.

Auburn Disaster Relief Fund

Auburn Development Council, Inc is pleased to announce the creation of the Auburn Disaster Relief Fund to meet the economic needs of businesses in Auburn for COVID-19 relief.

Auburn businesses have been hit hard the last two years with disasters. In 2019, historic flooding severely impacted Nemaha County and the Auburn businesses. Now Covid-19 has taken its toll on our business community before they were able to recover from the flooding.

In the past five years, Auburn is fortunate eleven new businesses have opened by local entrepreneurs. We realize how difficult it is to be a small business owner let alone be a new business start- up. We also realize how important each small business is for the vitality of Auburn. Auburn Development Council has recently helped restaurants, hair salons and limited retail with a Gift Card Matching program, totaling $18,000. There will be a long-term economic impact on our local businesses that will need to be addressed for them to survive ADC will match dollar for dollar up to the first $2,000 for any new funds contributed to the Auburn Disaster Relief Fund, bringing ADC’s commitment to Auburn businesses to $20,000 during this economic crisis. Now ADC is asking for your generosity so more businesses can be assisted.

The Rebound Grant will provide locally owned businesses with small grants for the purpose of building inventory, service capacity, an online presence or general assistance as business restrictions surrounding the pandemic are relaxed or eliminated. We want to ensure that businesses can rebound sales as the community business environment emerges from the worst impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Auburn Disaster Relief Fund will address both the immediate and longer-term needs related to this crisis with the focus being on economic needs. Priority will be given to local businesses that have been most significantly impacted by this crisis; this fund will continue to be active to address the future needs of our local businesses whether in disasters or economic uncertainties. Auburn’s local businesses are always there to support and donate to our local causes and now it is our time to help them. Those willing to support Auburn’s local businesses may give online https://growauburnne.com/disaster-relief/ or you may mail a check to Auburn Development Council, Inc 1101 J Street, Auburn, NE 68305 For more information, please contact: Auburn Development Council: Kim Beger, (402) 274-3420 or info@growauburnne.org.