Cross-sector group will represent downtown businesses, nonprofits, government entities, residents, and entrepreneurs

SAINT PAUL, MN – Saint Paul Mayor Melvin Carter and Securian Financial Group Chairman and CEO Chris Hilger today announced the creation of the Saint Paul Downtown Alliance, a new nonprofit organization representing all of downtown’s stakeholders with the goal of supporting a strong and vibrant Saint Paul.

“A thriving downtown is a critical part of a healthy city,” said Mayor Carter. “I look forward to partnering with this incredible group to reimagine how our downtown can create jobs and opportunity for our neighbors, while keeping Saint Paul positioned to compete in the global economy.”

The group aims to benefit the entire city and region by recruiting new employers, attracting new investments, advocating for downtown, and creating a positive experience for visitors, residents and workers alike.

Mayor Carter and Hilger will co-chair the group, which is made up of 16 board members. The board will convene quarterly, and will engage an even broader group of stakeholders through committees appointed on an annual basis.

“Downtown businesses have a vested interest in the continued growth and vitality of our city,” said Hilger. “Our goal is to create a safe, clean and attractive downtown experience.”

The Downtown Alliance is the outcome of a year-long community-based process spearheaded by the Saint Paul Riverfront Corporation that brought together government agencies, businesses, residents and other stakeholders to create a vision for the future of downtown Saint Paul.

“Residents are a vital part of what makes downtown Saint Paul great, and I am thrilled to be able to work side-by-side with businesses and nonprofits to ensure that our vision for the future of Saint Paul encompasses all of us,” said Jai Winston, who lives downtown.

A broad base of cross-sector funders is supporting the group, including several founding investors which have made a three-year funding commitment. The first year’s budget will be under $500,000, with a focus on convening the board, creating committees, and engaging the community.

The Downtown Alliance is seeking a bold, dynamic leader to run the organization and oversee its small team of support staff. Any inquiries regarding the position can reach out to Lars Leafblad at

For more information about the Downtown Alliance, visit