Rhombergs win regional Open 4 Business grant

The Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group (CDG), a Main Street organization, today announced that One Mission Fundraising, owned by John and Amanda Rhomberg, has been awarded an $8,000 grant through the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s (IEDA) Open 4 Business grant competition.

2016 Cedar Falls regional (2)

A total of $40,000 was invested into five Main Street programs around the state via the Open 4 Business grant program. The goal of the program is to further develop the economic vitality in Iowa’s Main Street districts. This grant program is administered through IEDA’s Iowa Downtown Resource Center and Main Street Iowa programs, and funds awarded today will benefit five Iowa-based entities’ business development and expansion projects

Winners include:

  • Olson-Larsen Galleries, Valley Junction – West Des Moines
  • Bella Ragazza, Burlington
  • Hotel Greenfield, Greenfield
  • One Mission Fundraising Inc., Mount Vernon
  • Wize Bize Wholesale, Hampton

Twenty-two businesses located in Main Street districts from across the state competed in first round pitch-off events in front of a panel of three judges to earn the chance to advance to the state contest.  The state Open 4 Business contest will be held on August 2, 2016 in conjunction with the Iowa Downtown Conference in Mason City and all five finalists will be competing for an additional $20,000. 

One Mission Fundraising (onemissionfundraising.com) is a fundraising platform for churches, schools, non-profits, adoptive parents, missionaries, mission groups, basically any “world changer.” One Mission exists to help good causes raise the money needed to accomplish their missions through online fundraising programs. Owners John and Amanda Rhomberg plan to use the financial investment to accelerate Web development projects to further improve their funding platform.

“We are thrilled that Main Street Iowa and the Iowa Economic Development Authority have chosen to invest in One Mission Fundraising,” said John Rhomberg, Co-Founder of One Mission, “This is not just an investment in one project. One Mission Fundraising remains committed to help all good causes raise the funds they need to go out and do good in the world.”  

“The Main Street Open 4 Business program builds upon the revitalization work taking place in Main Street districts across the state,” explained Main Street Iowa State Coordinator Michael Wagler. “The investment these businesses are making strengthen local economies in our communities’ downtowns – making them great places to do business.”  

The Open 4 Business grant program is part of the Challenge Grant program that is funded through an appropriation from the Iowa Legislature.  Since the first appropriation in 2002, approximately $6 million in state and federal funds have leveraged over $37 million in private reinvestment.  This represents 115 projects in 43 Main Street Iowa commercial districts across the state.   For more information about the Main Street Iowa Open 4 Business Grant program, contact Robin Bostrom, Business Specialist, Main Street Iowa, at 515.725.3053 or robin.bostrom@iowa.gov.

About the Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group

The Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group exists to improve the social and economic well-being of Mount Vernon and Lisbon by capitalizing on their unique identity, assets and character. Mount Vernon was selected as a Main Street community in 2008, and practices economic development within the context of historic preservation.

About Main Street

The Main Street Approach is a copyrighted process of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  The Program has been used in Iowa since 1986 with a total of 56 communities having participated.  Mount Vernon was selected as a Main Street community on March 4, 2008 by the State of Iowa, after submitting a comprehensive application and presenting to a select board of reviewers.