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For Immediate Release
OWATONNA, MINN.—Mankato City Councilor Karen Foreman was elected to serve as president of the U.S. Highway 14 Partnership at the organization’s annual meeting Jan. 12 in Owatonna. As president, Foreman will direct the Partnership’s efforts to advocate for funding to complete the expansion of U.S. Highway 14 to four lanes between Rochester and New Ulm.
Foreman was elected to lead the Partnership by fellow city, county and business leaders who live or work along U.S. Highway 14. She replaces outgoing president New Ulm Mayor Robert Beussman, who led the organization for three years. Beussman will continue to serve on the Partnership’s Board of Directors as past president.
“I’m confident that Karen will be a strong leader for Highway 14 Partnership,” Beussman said. “She has been an active member of our organization for several years and she is extremely knowledgeable about transportation issues at the state, regional and local levels. I’m happy to pass the reins over to her.”
Foreman is looking forward to leading the Partnership through the 2017 legislative session, which she hopes will be a productive one in terms of finally obtaining the funding needed to finish Highway 14. Currently, $300 million is needed to complete the two final stretches of the project — 12 miles from Nicollet to New Ulm and 12.5 miles from Owatonna to Dodge Center.
“Highway 14 has a tremendous impact on economic development for our entire region,” Foreman said. “Mankato has already seen the benefits of the highway expansion, and I want all of the other communities along Highway 14 to reap those benefits as well. It’s long overdue.”
The Highway 14 Partnership is an advocacy organization supporting the four-lane expansion of Highway 14. Formed in 1998, the Highway 14 Partnership includes local governments, private businesses and other organizations across Southern Minnesota.