Debi Brandt

United Community Action Partnership (UCAP) serves much of Southwest and South-Central Minnesota, hosting a variety of programs that help people meet their basic needs and move from poverty to self-sufficiency. 

After a several month search, UCAP on Friday announced the hiring of as their new executive director.  

Brandt was the Community Services Director for UCAP and then moved on to fill the interim executive director position in October

 Taking the position permanently seemed like the next logical step because, for Brant, her work is an extension of how she lives.

 The Board of Directors felt that her experience within the agency made her the right choice.  

“Debi has done an outstanding job while working for Heartland, and now United Community Action Partnership, for the last 35 years,” said Board President Brian Schultz.  

Brandt has served in various roles throughout her tenure with Community Action. Her commitment to advancing the mission of the agency—helping people, changing lives—has never wavered. In 2018, she was honored with the Steve Chadwick award from the Minnesota Community Action Partnership in recognition of this commitment. 

“I love to lead efforts to increase awareness and education about poverty,” Brandt said. So, she takes every opportunity afforded to her. 

 As one of UCAP’s poverty simulation facilitators, she has helped many people, including groups from the Federal Reserve Bank and local Human Services, understand what it’s like to live in poverty. She also shares her knowledge through an annual training about the impact of poverty on health with nursing and early childhood students at Ridgewater College.   

“Through my community involvement as an EMT, school board member, and CPR instructor, I always wear my community action hat to share information and resources, and advocate for decisions that have a positive impact on the families we serve,” she said. 

“I have never met anyone who loves her job and has as much passion for the people in the community as Debi does,” Schultz said. “I look forward to working with Debi and the entire staff to move this organization into the future.”