Greater Mankato Growth has promoted its director of Government and Institutional Affairs to an expanded role as Vice President of the organization.

Patrick Baker will have the added responsibilities for overall performance of GMG and its four business units. “I’m going to continue to work on our government affairs activities and continue to do things that I’ve always been doing to raise our community’s visibility but it going to be something into this expanded role to really focus on just helping Jonathan implement and execute on some of the things that we need to do as an organization to stay relevant and serve our businesses in the best way that we know how,” he explained.

President Jonathan Zierdt recently announced that he has begun a new round of chemotherapy in his more than four year long battle with prostate cancer, Baker said that did not factor into his promotion, “Not at all. This is something that I know Jonathan has been mulling for some time and I think that the timing is coincidental.”

In his six years with GMG, Baker has worked across all four of the organization’s business units — Greater Mankato Growth, Visit Mankato, City Center Partnership and GreenSeam – and Zierdt said that he has established critical and productive working relationship with key leaders within and outside of the community, and has earned the respect of his colleagues.

“It’s tremendously humbling for me,” Baker said, “I’m a Greater Mankato native and I never imagined that I’d be able to serve my community in a role like this. I’m incredibly excited to get started on this work and really get my hands – as you said — in a lot of different facets in our community and our work.”

Among other accolades, Zierdt said Baker’s leadership and focus in his most recent role as internal director of technology resulted in significant tech improvements and also reduced the related operating costs by more than 50 percent.