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Shakopee Mdewakanton invests in Windward Engineers & Consultants, forming unique ownership group with NELSON Worldwide

January 25th, 2021

Prior Lake, Minn. — The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community (SMSC) today announced its investment in Windward Engineers & Consultants, a certified minority business enterprise (MBE) engineering firm headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The ownership group also includes NELSON Worldwide, which provides architecture, design and brand strategy services in Minnesota and across the country, and Jason Booth, a Turtle Mountain Chippewa member and business owner experienced in tribal development and corporate supplier diversity. This combined ownership group builds upon Windward’s position as an industry leader nationwide and allows the firm to expand into new markets.

“It is important to our tribe to make investments that further diversify our economy and benefit the entire region and communities across the country,” said SMSC Chairman Keith B. Anderson. “With NELSON and Windward now on our team, we look forward to leveraging their expertise to enhance the work we do within our Community and across Indian Country.” SMSC Secretary/Treasurer Rebecca Crooks-Stratton will serve as Chairwoman of the Windward Board of Directors.

Guided by their Dakota heritage, the SMSC is committed to building partnerships and supporting the economic development of Native American communities across the country. As a SMSC enterprise, Windward will bring enhanced real estate, design and construction expertise to make an even larger impact on projects across the country.

In addition to expanding its service offerings in Indian Country, this new ownership group will allow Windward to offer clients engineering and real estate consulting services that help them achieve their diversity goals and broaden capital spending opportunities within their supply chains.

“Corporate America and Indian Country both seek experienced, scalable partners to help them achieve their business goals,” said Booth. “We will seek certifying agency designations that will be a real asset to corporations and agencies seeking capable MBE partners.”

As majority stakeholder of NELSON Worldwide and long-time resident of the Twin Cities, John “Ozzie” Nelson Jr. will aid Windward in casting a wider net on potential partnerships both locally and nationally. Awarded “Most Admired CEOs” in Minneapolis, Ozzie’s deep involvement with the community and long-standing commitment to diversity will further strengthen Windward’s initiatives in the region.

“We feel a deep sense of gratitude and obligation to help all communities improve their built environment. Now that we are working with the SMSC, we will have an enhanced ability to work with Native communities and open career opportunities to a wider share of our country’s talented, young and diverse engineers,” said Nelson. Windward will continue to deepen relationships in the Northeast, while accelerating its successful market growth achieved in the Southeast, Texas and the West Coast over the past year. The firm will continue to help clients safely occupy spaces impacted by COVID-19, including clients within the gaming and hospitality, retail, healthcare, distribution, education and corporate workplace markets. With this new ownership group, Windward also plans to expand its services in integrated infrastructure that supports WiFi, access control and room designation systems for modern workplaces.

About the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community
The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community is a federally recognized, sovereign Dakota tribal government located southwest of Minneapolis/St. Paul. Following a Dakota tradition of generosity, the SMSC is one of the top philanthropists in Minnesota and is the largest contributor to other tribal governments and causes across the country. It is a strong community partner and a leader in protecting and restoring natural resources. The SMSC’s government, Gaming Enterprise and various other enterprises are collectively the largest employer in Scott County and attract millions of visitors to the region.

About Windward Engineers and Consultants
Windward Engineers and Consultants exists for one primary purpose—to help clients achieve their objectives. Windward demonstrates the broad range of experience provided by a team of highly skilled professional, technical and support personnel. A services firm at its core, Windward strives to make the places where people work, shop, study, heal, stay and serve operate better. Windward brings a time-honored reputation and more than 60 years of experience and dedication to providing a full menu of engineering services to corporations and institutions across the globe.

About Jason Booth
Jason Booth is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians. An experienced, entrepreneurial executive, Booth has owned three businesses: TAG Capital, Ishpi, Inc., and The Patient Source. As founder of the The Patient Source, Booth grew the company to the largest Native-owned provider of patient education programs to corporate America. His work with Ishpi Inc., kept him involved with Indian Country through consulting services focused on non-gaming business development for tribes.

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Learn More About the SMSC

Read about our people or visit our frequently asked questions for additional information about the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community.

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