UNDATED -- A local leader with the Boys and Girls Club has received a major award.

Geri Bechtold has accepted the ATHENA award from the Women’s Fund of the Minnesota Community Foundation. She was chosen for the award because of her dedication to mentoring women and girls professionally through community partnerships and mentorships.

Bechtold has been with the Boys and Girls Clubs for over 30 years. She started part-time as the program manager for the KIDSTOP Kennedy location and went on to create the Junior Volunteer Leadership program. She also launched the St. Joseph Community Evening Outreach Program, works with the St. Cloud area school district to support a program to decrease early learning educational gaps, and currently serves as the vice-president of Operations for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Minnesota.

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Amiee Minnerath is the Senior Director of Communications for the Boys and Girls Clubs. She nominated Geri for the award.

Geri truly is the heart and soul of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Minnesota. She has been with the organization since she started part-time more than 30 years ago. She had planned on going into education, but the Boys & Girls Club grabbed a hold of her heart and never let go.

The ATHENA Award is a lifetime achievement award that recognizes women leaders who inspire others to achieve excellence. Since 2002, the Women’s Fund of the Central Minnesota Community Foundation has been dedicated to strengthening the community by improving the lives of women and girls. The Women’s Fund has granted nearly $1.6 million to support local programs.


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