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Pine River: Chamber honors Lynn Hunt

Lynn Hunt said she and her husband, Paul, have embraced Pine River as their home since moving there in 2004-05, and their goal is to continue to raise the sustainability and resiliency of the area.

Lynn Hunt speaks after receiving the Pine River Chamber of Commerce's Distinguished Service Award on Monday night, May 11, at the Pine River American Legion. Photo by Nancy Vogt
Lynn Hunt speaks after receiving the Pine River Chamber of Commerce's Distinguished Service Award on Monday night, May 11, at the Pine River American Legion. Photo by Nancy Vogt

Lynn Hunt said she and her husband, Paul, have embraced Pine River as their home since moving there in 2004-05, and their goal is to continue to raise the sustainability and resiliency of the area.

"You can't be self-sustainable without the community," she said.

"We encourage people to come to Pine River to see it, to taste it, to feel it," she told Pine River Chamber of Commerce members after receiving the chamber's Distinguished Service Award on Monday night, May 11, at the 37th annual award banquet at the Pine River American Legion.

Steve Hansen, the 2014 Distinguished Service Award winner, presented Hunt with her award after reading from a prepared script that outlined Hunt's contributions to Pine River:

Lynn and Paul started the Resilient Living Campus on the northwest corner of Pine River, under the big windmill and with Babe the Blue Ox greeting guests on Dancing Wind Road.

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Building trust and understanding is an important part of doing business for the Hunts. Before buying the campus property, the Hunts reached out to the Cass County Board and the Pine River City Council to make sure there was mutual interest in what they wanted to do.

The Hunts were delighted with the response from the city and the county, and thus started this chapter for the couple.

Before starting an endeavor in Pine River, the Hunts built Hunt Technologies east of Pequot Lakes on County Road 11 to almost 200 employees before selling the company. In addition to serving as board chair of Hunt Technologies, Lynn served on the Pequot Lakes Economic Development Committee, Pequot Lakes School Board and the state board for Minnesota Technologies, and she had many roles with Central Lakes Rotary and is active in the Rotary International District 5580.

Since moving to Pine River, she has been involved in numerous community projects, seeking the best path to improve and assist her new hometown.

Leading by example, she has encouraged her employees to participate in community service. She and the employees from the Resilient Living Campus (Hunt Utilities Group and Happy Dancing Turtle) have helped support many local events and projects, such as the Parade of Lights fireworks, Cass County Fair, Lakes Bluegrass Festival, community garden, farmers market, many school programs, as well as their own Back to Basics event that will celebrate 10 years in February 2016.

In addition, through active involvement with Central Lakes Rotary, she has encouraged the new Dam Park improvements, the playground and new swimming beach.

Lynn and Paul are parents to three adult children, including two who live and are raising their own families in Pine River. Lynn and Paul have 17 grandchildren.

Lynn and Paul received the Philanthropist of the Year Award from the Brainerd Area Community Foundation in 2012, honoring their efforts to support the community and region.

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Lynn is an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Central Lakes Rotary Club and Rotary International District 5580 as a committee chair and in other projects.

For Lynn, it is a lifelong pursuit to help her family, her employees, her community, the region (and beyond) to become more resilient and sustainable.

Lynn Hunt speaks after receiving the Pine River Chamber of Commerce's Distinguished Service Award on Monday night, May 11, at the Pine River American Legion. Photo by Nancy Vogt
Lynn Hunt speaks after receiving the Pine River Chamber of Commerce's Distinguished Service Award on Monday night, May 11, at the Pine River American Legion. Photo by Nancy Vogt

Nancy Vogt is editor of the Pineandlakes Echo Journal, a weekly newspaper that covers eight communities in the Pequot Lakes-Pine River areas - from Nisswa to Hackensack and Pequot Lakes to Crosslake.

She started as editor of the Lake Country Echo in July 2006, and continued in that role when the Lake Country Echo and the Pine River Journal combined in September 2013 to become the Pineandlakes Echo Journal. She worked for the Brainerd Dispatch from 1992-2006 in various roles.

She covers Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, Lake Shore and Crosslake city councils, as well as writes feature stories, news stories and personal columns (Vogt's Notes). She also takes photos at community events.

Contact her at nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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