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City Pages People Issue 2019: Meet the unsung heroes of the Twin Cities

Colin Michael Simmons

Colin Michael Simmons

The state of the union is strong.

In this state, anyway. Like anywhere, Minnesota's got plenty of challenges to face: healthcare, education, childcare, racial disparities, affordable housing, transportation, access to healthy food... um, weather?

If we're gonna get through all this, the people listed below will each be playing a part. They're political, cultural, entrepreneurial, and artistic trailblazers. Poets, publishers, activists, and servants. A soccer star. An advocate for immigrants, and another for the homeless. 

It's an impressive bunch, and we're lucky to have them around. Meet our choices for the 2019 City Pages People Issue.

Collin Martin: The Trailblazer
A one-of-his-kind pro athlete and LGBTQ inspiration.

LaTrisha Vetaw: The Public Servant
Keeping a politically fraught Park Board honest.

Hieu Minh Nguyen: The Poet Explorer
Celebrated wordsmith head-over-heels for the Twin Cities.

Xavier Tavera: The Photographer
His photos are only half the story.

Nona Marie Invie: The Booker
Working toward a more inclusive music scene.

Bryan Boyce: The Publisher
Founder of a one-of-its-kind publishing house for people with disabilities.

Steve Simon: The Voter's Guard Dog
Protecting Minnesota from attacks on our democracy.

Scotty Pekarek: The East Side's Governor
Giving is just what you do when you're the governor of the East Side.

Robert Boone: The Newspaperman
Helming Duluth's alt-weekly for 22 years.

Katie Haun Schuring: The Preservationist
Lover and protector of Minneapolis' old buildings.

Cat Polidova: The Fat Liberation Activist 
Doing big things as the owner of CAKE Plus-Size Retail and host of Matter of Fat.

Evva Kraikul and Nicolaas VaMeerten: The Game Changers
GLITCH co-founders are making the video game industry accessible to all.

Andrew Broder: The Musician
Raising money for great causes and throwing fun shows in the process.

Kyle "Guante" Tran Myhre: The Spoken Word Sage
Spoken word poet bringing a socially conscious message to the masses.

Bill Koutsky: The Benefactor
Will make you believe you can graduate college.

Shrey Pothini: The Prodigy
Getting his whole town to give to the homeless.

Carley Kammerer and Ben Griswold: The Coffee Missionaries
Keeping farmers market-goers caffeinated and youth experiencing homelessness employed since 2017.

José Luis Villaseñor: The Renaissance Man
Immigrant rights, youth empowerment, food access, environmental issues, sustainable transportation—the Tamales y Bicicletas founder is tackling it all.

Kelzee Tibbetts and Hannah Volkman: The Food Rescuers
Fighting for food-free landfills, one delivery at a time.

Abdirahman Muse: The Organizer
The Somali immigrant who took on Amazon.