Thursday, June 1, 2017

Otto Bremer Trust Grant Recipients in the Owatonna Area

As Otto Bremer Trust co-CEO, Charlotte Johnson helps guide an organization with an investment presence across the Upper Midwest. The grants Charlotte Johnson facilitates are targeted at organizations with an on-the-ground presence and a positive social impact on local communities.

As recently reported by the Owatonna People’s Press, the Otto Bremer Trust (OBT) completed an early 2017 grant making cycle that involved the identification of recipients of nearly $8 million in community investments. The selection process was described as involving the assessment of a diverse range of needs, with a focus on identifying those applicants that had the greatest positive community impact. 

Among the organizations within the Owatonna, Minnesota, community that received grants was Beds For Kids, LLC. The nonprofit provides durable beds and bedding materials to children in need and received $15,000 toward its charitable efforts. Another recipient, Ruth’s House of Hope, Inc., received $50,000 from OBT toward its support services and shelter, which it provides to women and children who are homeless in the Faribault area.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Crow Wing County Victim Services’ Coordinated Efforts

Charlotte Johnson serves as trustee and co-CEO of the Otto Bremer Trust where she guides investments in Minnesota, North Dakota, and western Wisconsin organizations with a charitable focus. In 2016, Charlotte Johnson and her associates at the Otto Bremer Trust (OBT) coordinated the distribution of $47 million in investments in nonprofits regionwide. 

In March of 2017, Crow Wing County Victim Services received a $50,000 OBT grant toward its provision of assistance to victims as they undergo a process of recovery. Meeting the needs of more than 2,000 people annually, the nonprofit provides countywide services that include financial and court-related support following criminal incidents. Areas of focus include domestic violence, theft, kidnapping, stalking, and protection order violations.

The grant was described as enabling Victim Services to continue to maintain a high level of responsiveness to serious community needs. The support it provides continues as offenders make their way through the courts and the criminal justice system.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Otto Bremer Trust Awards Grant to Crow Wing County Victim Services

As trustee and co-CEO with Otto Bremer Trust (OBT), Charlotte Johnson is tasked with guiding the distribution of grants to organizations spanning the Upper Midwest. Among the nonprofits that Charlotte Johnson and her Otto Bremer Trust colleagues directed funds toward in early 2017 was Crow Wing County Victim Services.

Located in Brainerd, Minnesota, the organization offers financial, court-related, and general support services to approximately 2,000 victims on an annual basis. The only organization of its type countywide, it is a critical support vehicle for those who have experienced kidnapping, burglary, harassment, stalking, and Internet crimes. 

The $50,000 received by Crow Wing County Victim Services will allow it to fully aid victims as they seek recovery from criminal incidents. In addition to general recovery support, the organization provides informed legal guidance as the alleged offender navigates the criminal justice system. The grant was described by an OBT executive as assisting victims in taking first steps toward “healing and resolution.”

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Otto Bremer Breaks Grantmaking Records in 2016

Overseeing the activities of the Otto Bremer Trust in her role as trustee and co-CEO, Charlotte Johnson helps manage the trust in accordance with its Trust Instrument. In January 2017, the Otto Bremer Trust announced that it has awarded over $47 million in grants and investments to programs and organizations that meet the trust’s goal of building communities through organized initiatives throughout Minnesota, Western Wisconsin, and North Dakota.

In total, grants and investments were made to over 550 organizations in the regions where the trust operates. Charlotte Johnson spoke about the pride she and the organization felt in having broken previous records to make the $47.3 million granted throughout 2016 the largest distribution during the course of a year in the history of the trust.

The amount exceeds the average annual figure of $42 million, set over the last five years, and brings the amount granted by the organization in its lifetime above $600 million.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Tips for Preparing for Your First Hike


In addition to being a co-CEO and trustee of the Otto Bremer Trust, Charlotte Johnson is an energetic person who participates in many physical activities. Charlotte Johnson of the Otto Bremer Trust enjoys hiking in her spare time.

Focusing on safety at all times is important for hikers. Here are some tips to help.

1. Always plan your route on a map beforehand. Plot your trail, understand how much distance you will cover during the hike, and mark any landmarks you can use for navigation on the map, which should then be stored in your backpack.

2. Start small with your hikes. Consider exploring local parks and nature reserves before you take on the big challenges.

3. Consider joining a club so you can gain access to useful resources and people who share their passion and experiences with you.

4. Stay hydrated at all times. As a general rule, pack one liter of water for every two hours you intend to hike. You can also mark areas on your map where you can get refills if needed.

5. Invest in a good pair of hiking boots, but remember that a high price does not necessarily guarantee a good pair of boots. To make sure the boots are comfortable, wear them for at least a few hours two or three times before you go hiking.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Advice for Improving Your Golf Drive

Charlotte Johnson is an experienced senior executive who serves as a co-CEO and trustee of the Otto Bremer Trust. Charlotte Johnson of Otto Bremer is also a keen golfer who plays regularly. 

The drive is one of the most important shots in the game of golf. Here are a few tips that should help you improve your drive.

1. Focus on the shot rather than everything that surrounds it. At times, playing off the tee can feel like a performance, especially if an audience is present. Drown out distractions and get the shot right.

2. Change the placement of the ball so it relates to your stance. As a general rule, the ball should be placed farther forward of your stance than it typically would be for other shots. You should aim to make contact with the ball as your club’s head begins to ascend.

3. Keep your muscles relaxed throughout the swing. At your finishing position, you should have all your weight on your left foot (or right foot, if you are left-handed) while your other foot should be on its tiptoe.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Authors’ Challenges When Writing Historical Biographies

Charlotte Johnson serves as a co-CEO and trustee of the Otto Bremer Trust, a grantmaking entity in the Upper Midwest that was formerly known as the Otto Bremer Foundation. In her spare time, Charlotte Johnson pursues a multitude of hobbies, including reading nonfiction.

Some academics doubt that biographers can adequately take into account the wider historical context of the personages about which they write. Yet, good biographers seldom discuss such personages without reference to their impact on the age in which they lived—and vice versa.

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography emphasizes the importance of readers learning about both of these aspects of biographies, which means that biographers must be careful about how they portray their subjects.

This raises the question of whether biographers can separate their emotions from their subjects. Some authors choose to write about people they admire, whereas others opt to discuss those they detest.

In this regard, biographers may feel a connection to their subject by digesting all of the information they can find, including documents, personal letters, and other data that reveal pertinent or shocking details. In doing so, they must take care to reflect details accurately, making sure not to let their emotions affect their writing, particularly about someone who has affected the course of history.