After extensive assessment of need and capacity, Jeremiah is developing a comprehensive plan to launch its two-generation program in Rochester–Southeast, MN. JoMarie Morris has been named executive director of this effort.
Currently, 10% of the Olmsted County population is living in poverty, and the poverty rate is nearly double—19.3%—for single mother households. Olmsted County’s growing economy—due to the Destination Medical Center (DMC) initiative and increasing numbers of baby boomers leaving the work force—has resulted in a shortage of qualified workers. Jeremiah Program Rochester will both strengthen the economic vibrancy of the area and proactively help young families headed by single mothers walk the path from poverty to prosperity.
The Otto Bremer Foundation provided $50,000 in early funding, and an advisory council offered significant assistance over the past year to advance the effort in Rochester.
Morris was a partner at Klampe, Delehanty & Morris law firm in Rochester for 18 years, president of the Olmsted County Bar Association, and an adjunct professor at Winona State University. She served as a legislative intern for Minnesota State Senator Steven Morse prior to attending William Mitchell College of Law, where she graduated with honors and served as associate editor of the law review. She has done significant pro bono work related to domestic abuse, sex and labor trafficking, and citizenship for refugees. She graduated magna cum laude from Winona State University.