Our Mission, Vision, and Values

Cookie Cart teaches life, leadership, and employment skills to teens of color
through on-the-job and classroom experiences in nonprofit bakeries.

We envision equitable communities where Cookie Cart alumni thrive and lead.

The potential of every young person

We believe in the innate strength of and possibilities for every young person we engage. We lift up their talents and support their future as tomorrow’s leaders.

Equity and opportunity

We advocate for a world that is just and fair, where all people have opportunity and a strong sense of value and belonging. We believe our presence and the benefits youth gain in our program are essential contributors to equitable communities. We support sustained action to dismantle systemic racism.

The power of relationships

We believe trusting relationships make it possible for youth to prosper and for communities to be places of connection and support. We seek to be a trustworthy employer and neighborhood partner.

Compassionate accountability

We seek excellence in all we do, holding ourselves accountable with compassion and care. We treat mistakes and questions as opportunities for learning and growth.

It’s More than Just a Cookie…

It’s a First Job Experience.

Cookie Cart is the Twin Cities’ leader in youth social enterprise. Our bakeries are classrooms, where hundreds of teens learn and build real world skills that prepare them for successful futures. We combine paid work experience with workshops to promote career and leadership development for youth. And we do all this while operating two commercial bakeries that make incredible
cookies made with real, quality ingredients!

Our History

The idea was simple. Sister Jean Thuerauf invited neighborhood youth into her kitchen for help with schoolwork and to bake cookies. It didn’t take long for there to be more young people than there was room in her kitchen!

In 1988, with help from the community, Sister Jean’s vision for a creative and engaging space for North Minneapolis’ youth was registered as Cookie Cart, a 501(c)3 nonprofit.

What began as a cart rolling up and down the streets of North Minneapolis, has grown into two neighborhood bakeries on West Broadway in North Minneapolis and on Payne Avenue in Saint Paul. Along the way, Sister Jean’s vision and legacy has remained our guide: to use cookies as a tool to provide hundreds of neighborhood teens with the job experience and leadership skills they need to have successful futures.

Our Staff

Full of cookie lovers and community voices that are passionate about youth development and workplace accountability, our staff team has all the perfect ingredients to cook up some incredibly impactful work in North Minneapolis and East Saint Paul.

Meet Our Board

Toiné Warren


Executive Vice President, Product and Portfolio Management
Heraeus Medevio
Megan Fritz


Director of Field Sales
General Mills, Inc.
David Adams
Senior Counsel
Clearway Energy Group
Eric Black
President & CEO
Minnesota Diversified Industries
Jolynn Fielder
Vice President – Concept Support Services
American Dairy Queen Corporation
Anthony Finnell, Jr.
Faegre Drinker
Drinal Foster

Program Committee Chair

Sr. Business Support Leader
Wells Fargo
Tom Goettl
Sharon Grice
Admissions Director
Cornell College
Willie Harbert

Social Enterprise Committee Chair

Vice President, Motors
Dan Kinsella

Finance Committee Chair

Chief Financial Officer, Retired
Emily Koski
SVP, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategy Lead
U.S. Bank
Clint Roberts
Founder & CEO
One Simple Plan
Philomena Satre

Governance Committee Chair

Diversity & Inclusion and Strategic External Relationships
Land O’Lakes
Jennifer Willner
JW Regulatory Consulting LLC

Cookie Cart Annual Reports and Financials