Work and small-town life drew Heather Tichy to Barnesville

Heather Tichy, Minnesota National Guard

When Heather Tichy joined the Minnesota National Guard, she moved to Barnesville to be closer to her Moorhead-based unit.

She immediately warmed to the town of 2,570.

“You can go into the post office and even if you don’t know anyone there, they’ll say hi to you and I enjoy that so much,” said Tichy, a native of the Twin Cities suburb of Shakopee. “When you drive into the Twin Cities, you can feel your anxiety rising. Here, there’s not that hectic feeling, like everyone is trying to get everywhere.”

Heather studied pre-medicine at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter before deciding to join the military.

“I wanted to do something more meaningful and the military fit the bill,” she said.

In Barnesville, she landed a job as administrative coordinator for Stoneridge Software, a growing 75-employee Microsoft partner with a second office in Minneapolis. Two key company values, integrity and tenacity, match her own. She also appreciates the sense of community at the office.

She also found room to live wide open. For her, that means growing produce. She and her husband and some friends grow anything they can on 1-2 acres, including cucumbers, potatoes, squash, zucchini, pumpkins, cabbage and more. Whatever they can’t eat or pickle, they give away.

“We liked the smaller-town feel of Barnesville,” she said. “If you come up here, there are places to live and opportunities for work.”

Steve Henning