About the Episode

On this episode of #CompactNationPod, Marisol chats with Irene Fernando, a commissioner of Hennepin County in Minnesota. Listen in as she chats about her work as a commissioner and the role of local government, the beginning of her community work as an undergraduate student at the University of Minnesota (which led to her co-founding the organization Students Today Leaders Forever), and her thoughts on what students today can do to work toward positive change in their communities.

Listen to the episode

Show Notes


Irene Fernando was elected to the Hennepin County Board of Commissioners in November of 2018. Before joining the County Board, Irene worked at Thrivent Financial leading around organizational design, culture, and talent. Irene studied at the University of Minnesota where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Business and a Master of Education in Youth Development Leadership. Irene lives in the Harrison neighborhood of Minneapolis where she currently resides with her partner Kent, and their dog Ernie.

Your Hosts

Andrew Seligsohn


Marisol Morales

Vice President, Network Leadership

Emily J. Shields

Executive Director, Iowa & Minnesota Campus Compact