In 1969, dozens of Red Wing area businesses saw a need and contributed dollars to meet it. They believed that individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities could have a better life.

Interstate Rehabilitation Center opened up shop. It had 1,500 square feet inside the administrator’s house at the old City Hospital in Red Wing. People wanted to work. There were two shifts, initially, to keep up.

RELATED: ProAct celebrates 50 years of revolutionizing rehabilitation services

Without that early support, and 50 years of welcoming acceptance in Red Wing, ProAct, which previously operated as IRC, would not be where it is today. Thank you.

The satisfaction of the people we serve is our top priority. This community, in so many ways, has come alongside and joined us in our mission. We are grateful.

As to the employers who hire the people we support- you are the champions. Here’s to 50 more years of lives changed for the better.

Steve Ditschler

Eagan, Minn.

Steve Ditschler is president and CEO of ProAct Inc.