Washburn Center for Children

We are lucky to have Brian’s extensive experience and skill set at the table. The added bonus is the passion he shares for our mission. His commitment to our success is extraordinary.
– Steve Lepinski, Washburn Executive Director


For 130 years, Washburn has been a vital Twin Cities nonprofit, bringing hope to struggling families. Founded in 1883 as Washburn Memorial Orphan Asylum, Cadwallader C. Washburn, co-founder of the milling company that became General Mills, created the facility after a mill explosion left several children orphaned.

The orphanage has long-since closed, but the agency has continued to respond to the changing needs, health and welfare of the community’s children. Washburn is now Minnesota’s leading children’s mental health center, identifying and treating children ages birth to 18 with challenges such as behavioral problems, anxiety, attention deficit disorder, trauma, depression and loss, grief or life changes.

Today, with one in five children encountering a mental health challenge, and nearly 55% of the children Washburn serves coming from low-income families, the need for Washburn’s therapeutic services has expanded dramatically. To address the increased demand, Washburn launched a $21 million capital campaign to build a new facility. Land was secured just west of downtown Minneapolis, with plans to break ground in summer 2013. The new facility will help future generations of children thrive and achieve success in school, home and life.

04-18-14 2014 BRE (Best In Real Estate) – Nonprofit Development by Andrew Tellijohn, Contributing writer, Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

04-17-14 Building a special place for children with mental illnesses by Sarah McKenzie, The Journal

04-10-14 Washburn Center for Children: Where ‘the wild things’ are understood by Sarah T. Williams, Minn Post

Location:Minneapolis, MN
Total Development Cost:$26 million
Total Area:50,000 sf
Completion:December 2014
Financing:State Bonding, New Market Tax Credits, Philanthropic Grants, Environmental Cleanup Grants and Bridge Loan