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Kim Nelson Receives YWCA Minneapolis Inaugural “Woman of Power” Award

By YWCA Minneapolis
May 14, 2018
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Those who know Kim Nelson well say she speaks the truth, breaks down barriers and is not afraid to share the power. Once the highest-ranking African American woman at General Mills, she retired at the end of last year with a lifetime’s worth of accomplishments behind her.

The YWCA Minneapolis Circle of Women committee selected Kim Nelson for the inaugural “Woman of Power” award for her distinguished and influential leadership, both in her career and community work.

A mentor to many and a role model to all, Kim Nelson has committed her life to making a better, more just world. As a dedicated YWCA Minneapolis supporter, Kim served two consecutive terms on the YWCA board, including two years as Board President. Her passion to close the education opportunity gap for children of color in the Twin Cities led her to be a founding member of Generation Next – a cross-sector community partnership working to close the academic achievement gap in Minneapolis-St. Paul.

As an executive at General Mills, she wielded her influence to make General Mills a more inclusive workplace for women and employees of color. She co-founded Black Champions and Women in Marketing networks, mentored women and people of color at the company and helped General Mills earn the title of Best Company for Multicultural Women by Working Mother magazine.

“It is an incredible honor to be the inaugural recipient of the YWCA Minneapolis ‘Woman of Power’ Award,” says Kim Nelson. “The idea of a ‘Woman of Power’ Award is very timely. We are at a crossroads in our nation and in the world, as relates to women and power, living in the #MeToo movement.  We are standing up and standing in our power. My prayer for all women is that we live every day as women of power – confident, courageous and willing to help others.”

YWCA Minneapolis established the “Woman of Power” award this year to honor women across the Twin Cities who have demonstrated commitment, enthusiasm and support for the mission of YWCA Minneapolis. The “Woman of Power” award is presented to an individual who has shown extraordinary leadership, dedication and achievement in all of YWCA’s core values – peace, justice, freedom and dignity. The award was presented to Kim Nelson during YWCA Minneapolis’ Circle of Women event on May 10, 2018.

About Kim Nelson

Kim Nelson has served as former Senior Vice President of External Relations at General Mills, a member of the General Mills Senior Leadership Team and former president of a +$1B operating division within the consumer packaged goods industry. With over 29 years of experience in brand management, advertising, reputation management, corporate communications, consumer relations, government relations, public affairs, issues and crisis management, sustainability and philanthropy, Kim is one of the most recognized female leaders in our community.

About YWCA Minneapolis

YWCA Minneapolis is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating racism and empowering women and girls. For more than 125 years, we have worked to create opportunities to overcome social injustice, particularly in matters of gender and race. Last year, YWCA Minneapolis served more than 30,000 people in our community through early childhood education, girls and youth programming, health and fitness and racial justice advocacy and training. To learn more, visit

Media Contact:

Cori Mattli
YWCA Minneapolis