Our Purpose

Connecting the Upper Midwest Wellness Corridor with the Regions and Peoples of the World

Our Mission

By facilitating local, regional, and global collaborations, GWC is strengthening the Wellness Corridor of the Upper-Midwest. GWC is the home of innovative civic projects that accelerate the region’s unmatched capabilities in healthcare, nutrition, and mobility.

Our Vision

Leverage the Upper-Midwest’s unique talents, industries, and natural resources to become the global, economic, scientific, and business leader in health and wellness. The Global Wellness Connections is the vehicle to make it reality.

GWC Key Objectives


Harness the known power of collaboration among government, academia, nonprofits and industry to create a network of networks


Amplify region-to-region interaction nationally and internationally


Identify, refine, fund, manage, initiate relevant pilot wellness platforms


Build and manage learning laboratories to foster intellectual collisions and create new approaches, treatments, delivery systems, and organizational architectures to improve the social fabric and human wellness

Why Here in the Upper Midwest?

Our region is a leader in:

• Healthcare – Mayo Clinic, United Health Group, and Optum Health
• Agriculture and Food Production – Cargill, General Mills, and Land O Lakes
• Medical Technology – Medtronic, Boston Scientific, 3M, and Ecolab

Our region has an abundance of natural resources, as well as economic and human assets such as:

  • Available infrastructure for the effective distribution and delivery of our innovations
  • Globally recognized academic resources
  • Government commitment from the five Upper Midwest states
  • A talented, innovative, and diverse population
  • Environmental assets, such as water and agricultural land, that will become game-changing economic advantages in the coming years

Our region has optimal access to interconnect assets, networks, and people via:

  • Well-developed road transportation infrastructure
  • High-capacity air transportation facilities and ports such as MSP, RSP, and Duluth
  • Virtual networks with wide, high-speed internet/data coverage
  • The Hyperloop transportation network with MSP to RST as the initial link

Why is Now the Time to Act?

Global economic competition has become region-centric to attract capital inflows at scale and improve the social fabric of its citizens.

Other regions have utilized their unique assets with Austin being “The Human Capital,” northern California being Silicon Valley, etc.

Considering the speed and magnitude of change, inaction threatens the future of the Upper Midwest; standing still is moving backwards.

With climate change, inequities, inequalities, resource scarcity, and escalating health care costs, the Upper-Midwest’s Wellness Corridor must reach its potential. GWC is connecting talent and organizations across sectors and industries, in the areas of health, nutrition, and mobility, to expedite our region’s evolution as the Wellness Corridor for the world.

GWC Founding Leadership Team

Mark Ritchie

Jim Hovland

Michael Wright

Michael W. Wright

Jeffry Wosje

Jeffry Wosje

William Goins

Bill Goins

Curt Johnson

Curtis Johnson

Team Members

Lisa Clarke

Christine Hanson

Donna Koren

Lori Syverson

Upcoming Events and Learning Labs

On October 7, 2022, David Beurle of Future iQ will present the report that is the culmination of several previous sessions. He will show a preferred roadmap of collaborative action and challenge the group to create national recognition for the Upper Midwest as the Wellness Corridor. 

Learning labs provide a secure, sustainable, and scalable platform for precompetitive research, innovation, and disruptive technologies. Furthermore, we’ll explore converging technologies and pilot new solutions to global wellness challenges. Dates and times are TBD.