History and Purpose

CapitolRiver Council — District 17 — is one of the 17 district councils for the City of Saint Paul. CRC is a private, 501(c)3 non-profit organization that exists to engage residents, business owners, workers and property owners in issues and projects that affect downtown Saint Paul and the Capitol area.

We achieve our mission by getting people involved — for example, by participating in committees— and by creating an atmosphere of mutual respect, where people can participate in meaningful discussions about livability and barriers to livability. We engage people in discussions about the City’s Comprehensive Plan and District 17 Neighborhood Plans.

In 2020-21, we will be reviewing and updating the Downtown Development Strategy —  by participating in that process, you will help us create a document that better represents a shared vision of ALL stakeholders, and not just a small number of voices.

Through these discussions, we provide opportunities for people to listen to and learn from each other. We also build and maintain professional working relationships with people throughout local government and in other local organizations, so that in addition to listening to your ideas, questions and concerns, we are working collaboratively with decision-makers to influence change.

We succeed when we engage ALL stakeholders/groups in our work:

  • Residents in different buildings, of different ages, with or without children, different ethnic backgrounds, and with different levels of income;
  • Employees in all types and sizes of organizations, in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors;
  • Building owners;
  • Business owners; and
  • Visitors.

Read more about CRC's history here

If you want to get involved, but our committee meetings are not convenient for you, please contact us, so that we can find a way to include your voice in our work:

Email CRC Executive Director Jon Fure at [email protected] or call 651-221-0488.


Please consider making a donation of any amount to support our work: Make a donation to CRC (via Mighty Cause)

Mailing Address:

370 Wabasha Street North, Suite 720
Saint Paul, MN 55102

Board and Staff

CapitolRiver Council Board

Term Expiring in 2023
  • Kathy Blair
  • Judith Miller
  • Kathleen O'Neil
  • Alan Ostergaard
  • Will Travis
Term Expiring in 2024
  • Jess Grams
  • Meredith Heneghan
  • Richard Johnson
  • Olga Nichols
  • Julie Printz
Appointed Members-2020-2021
  • Alyssa Binsfeld, Saint Paul Area Chamber
  • Merritt Clapp-Smith, Capitol Area Architecture and Planning Board
  • Tom Erickson, BOMA
  • Bridget McCoy, Visit Saint Paul
  • Erin Zolotukhin-Ridgway, Saint Paul Central Library
  • Chair - Jess Grams
  • Vice Chair - Olga Nichols
  • Treasurer - Will Travis
  • Internal Affairs Officer - Meredith Heneghan


Agendas and Minutes

For Board Meeting agendas and minutes, click here.

District Council System

The Saint Paul City Council adopted the following definition of community participation in 1975: “(It) is a process, not a structure. The City has a responsibility to develop a process that will ensure that everyone has the opportunity to communicate with City government, and further that everyone is assured that they will be heard. This process cannot guarantee that there will always be agreement nor is it a substitution of one level of government for another or any other transfer of power.”

The district councils are designed to foster increased participation in government planning and decision-making within each neighborhood, to ensure a citywide communication network, and a point of contact for land-use issues. Equitable community engagement is the cornerstone of our work. We build connections within and between communities, play important roles in planning and public policy, and engage the community in work that makes the City and our neighborhoods a better and more sustainable place to live, learn, work and play.

Read more about the District Council system on the City of Saint Paul website or Download a map of the Saint Paul District Councils.