Here we lay foundations for full, healthy lives for children and families. Here we build places of creativity and connection, where strong voices are nurtured and stories are amplified. Here we create pathways to a prosperous future, from education to jobs to economic mobility.
140 years of justice
UNITED WE THRIVE
Beginning in 1879 with Minneapolis’s first settlement house, Pillsbury United Communities co-creates enduring change toward a just society. Built with and for historically marginalized and underinvested groups across our community, our united system of programs, neighborhood centers, and social enterprises connects more than 55,000 individuals and their families each year. We are guided by a vision of thriving communities where every person has personal, social, and economic power.
WHOLE PEOPLE IN WHOLE COMMUNITIES
Systemic problems can’t be solved by one tactic or one interaction. We look beyond the narrow needs that bring people through our doors to address the many barriers standing in their way: from inadequate nutrition to disparities in education. Through interconnected assets that support people’s lives in a broad context, we knit lives and communities together and create an impact greater than the sum of our parts.
CHANGE AT THE SPEED OF COMMUNITY
Everything we do starts with empathy and proceeds with humility. By asking the right questions, we uncover the true needs that lead to meaningful innovation. Using the principles of human-centered design, we create solutions with and for those most affected. It’s an approach born of our settlement house roots: not telling people, “Here’s what you need,” but asking, “What can we do together?”
We are community builders co-creating enduring change toward a just society.
We imagine thriving communities where every person has personal, social, and economic power.
We believe in building bold, transformative solutions with our community.
We believe equity comes from health, safety, quality, education, and meaningful work.
We believe true resiliency in communities emerges from equitable systems, infrastructure, and social connectedness.
We believe we are stronger together; we strive to always work in partnership.
We believe positivity, empathy, and compassion are revolutionary acts.
WE BELIEVE THAT PEOPLE DESERVE A VOICE IN DECISIONS THAT AFFECT THEM.
THAT CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING IS ESSENTIAL TO SOCIAL CONNECTION.
THAT COMMUNITIES GET STRONGER WHEN OPPORTUNITY IS SHARED.
THAT A JUST SOCIETY IS ONE WHERE EVERYBODY HAS POWER — NO EXCEPTIONS.
For 140 years, we have put these beliefs into action. Here we lay foundations for full, healthy lives for children and families. Here we build places of creativity and connection, where strong voices are nurtured and stories are amplified. Here we create pathways to a prosperous future, from education to jobs to economic mobility.
This is what justice means. The opportunity to flourish regardless of zip code, age, ability, or background. The power to own our future on our own terms. For us, enduring change is not a lofty vision, but an ongoing pursuit, unfolding day by day, need by need, and block by block.
To achieve it, you have to live it.
Justice lives here
Pillsbury United Communities was founded in 1879 as the Bethel Mission, an offshoot of Plymouth Congregational Church. We trace our roots to many of the earliest settlement houses in our city, including Pillsbury House, Unity House, and Wells Memorial House. Our history is as rich and diverse as the neighborhoods we’ve called home.
Our communities and our work have evolved over the last 140 years, but our mission remains the same: working with our communities to co-create enduring change towards a just society.
board of directors
Lindsay L. Benjamin
Senior Project Manager, Optum Operations at UnitedHealth Group
Founder, President & CEO, Language Banc, LLC
Dr. Laura Bloomberg
Dean, University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Director of Customer Experience, Best Buy Co., Inc.
Senior Vice President, U.S. Trust
Assistant Director, Hennepin Elementary School
Digital Consultant, Kenji Okumura, LLC
Chief Creative Officer, Padilla
Director/Producer, Flying Pieces Productions
Attorney, Fredrikson & Byron, P.A.
Financial Planning & Analysis Lead, Cargill
Director, Financial Education Strategy, US Bank
We’re proud of the work we have done and what we have accomplished. But when we look at the persistent rates of inequity in our state, from education to health to wealth, we are determined to do more. Our communities need disruptive innovation — and urgently. That means building new systems and infrastructure to make an impact at a population level. It means making uncommon allegiances with non-profits, businesses, and policymakers to pursue radical solutions we can’t do alone. And it means shaking off the complacency of the nonprofit industrial complex to demand more of ourselves and each other. Read our strategic framework to learn more about our vision for a new social services ecosystem that can sustain a thriving community today and tomorrow.
Benefits are available to all employees who work 18.75 hours or more a week.