Marnell named St. Croix Valley Business Innovation Center director

Sheri Marnell officially takes the helm on leading small business incubation for the St. Croix Valley economic region

Sheri Marnell CBE UWRFJune 8, 2021 - The College of Business and Economics (CBE) at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, in partnership with the City of River Falls, Chippewa Valley Technical College, and the River Falls Economic Development Corporation, welcomes Sheri Marnell, Ph.D., as the new director of the St. Croix Valley Business Innovation Center (SCVBIC).

Marnell, of Hudson, was initially brought in to lead the center in February 2020 on an interim basis. She has previous higher education and corporate experience, including at UW-Stout and Target Corporate.

As director, Marnell is responsible for the continued operation of the innovation center and its mission of fostering entrepreneurship and economic development that results in a more vibrant regional economy. Her appointment started June 1 and she will report to CBE Interim Dean Marina Onken.

“Entrepreneurs wear many hats in their business,” Marnell said. “Leading a business incubator allows our members to be connected to resources and advising that they would not have outside our building. In the 15 months that I have been interim director, the growth that all our members had during a global pandemic is a testament to the value we bring to the St. Croix Valley's economic growth.”

“As interim director, Dr. Marnell was also able to drive growth in our business incubator program,” said Onken. “We are excited to officially have Dr. Marnell on our team where she can continue this growth and success.”

The SCVBIC is a collaborative effort between four founding partners within the local community: CBE, Chippewa Valley Technical College, the City of River Falls and the River Falls Economic Development Corporation. It was founded with the mission to provide incubation space, training and support to foster entrepreneurship and enhance success of businesses resulting in regional economic growth, new job opportunities, and a vibrant St. Croix Valley.

“I chose to come to the SCVBIC because I loved the idea of working alongside other entrepreneurs in a very positive atmosphere. The director of the Innovation Center has been incredibly approachable and accommodating. Couldn’t ask for a better situation than what I have now, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision,” said Ed Rosheim, owner of Workplace Language and current tenant of the SCVBIC.

Marnell holds a Ph.D. in business management - innovation and leadership from Capella University and an MBA from UW-River Falls. Prior to her role at the innovation center, Marnell was a lecturer for UW-River Falls as well as a program director at UW-Stout. She also comes with extensive leadership and collaborative skills from her tenure with Target Corp. She is heavily involved in the local community through her work with the Hudson Community Foundation and other educational, sports, and civic organizations.

For more information on the St. Croix Valley Business Innovation Center, the services offered, or to schedule a tour, visit or contact Marnell at or 715-425-4288.

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