Veteran organizer will use statewide coalition building to strengthen the impact of American Experiment’s issues agenda.

Center of the American Experiment recently retained Bobby Benson to become its first Greater Minnesota coordinator.

Benson, 32, has extensive experience in organizing groups and individuals in support of public policies and politicians. He most recently served as director of government affairs at the Minnesota Community Action Partnership in St. Paul. Prior to that, he spent three years as political director in the Minnesota office of Minnesota Congressman Tom Emmer. He has also taken on project work for the American Action Network and Collegians for a Constructive Tomorrow.

While on his way to obtaining a B.A. from Winona State University in 2011, Benson completed summer internships with the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in Washington, D.C. and the Anti-Defamation League in Israel.

American Experiment is thought to be the first regional think tank to deploy an outreach director of this sort, which President John Hinderaker thinks is a natural extension of his Center’s increasing influence on public policy in Minnesota, particularly at the legislature.

“An effective think tank has to do more than think,” Hinderaker says. “We want to be a crucial part of policy discourse wherever that may be.”

Hinderaker said Benson’s mission will be to connect the “network of individuals across Greater Minnesota that agree with the Center’s point of view— make a real difference in how our state is run.”