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Hop, Step, and Jump

Former All-American triple jumper Sari Brouwer leaps into her new role at McNamara Alumni Center.

By Todd R. Berger

Sari Brower of McNamara Alumni Center in Minneapolis
Sari Brower of McNamara Alumni Center on the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, campus in Minneapolis

Rachel Nadeau

Although native Minnesotan Sari Brouwer has been with McNamara Alumni Center at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis since 2015, she stepped into the job of director of sales and events in February 2022. As director, she supervises a staff of nine that handles 800 events annually at the teeming on-campus event center.

“I’m really proud of our team for having the attention to detail and the level of service that we do for our clients to make sure their experience is amazing here,” Brouwer says. “I’d just say a lot of our clients come back year after year, and I think that is a testament to the processes we have in place that make it such a wonderful experience.”

Born and raised in Cannon Falls with two older brothers, Brouwer went to Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, where she competed on the track and field team in long and triple jump. She also studied abroad in Japan, living with a host family while attending Kansai Gaidai University in Osaka.

“There was one member of the host family who spoke a little English,” she says, “and we would speak English occasionally, but everyone else spoke Japanese. I had two years of Japanese from college. … I really got fully immersed [in the Japanese language] with the family, and my skills developed rapidly living there and taking classes. Sadly, I have lost a lot of those skills,” Brouwer says, with a laugh.

She returned from her semester abroad to Minnesota, finished college, and began work in wedding sales with Bellagala in St. Paul. After seven years of increasing responsibility at Bellagala, she joined McNamara for the opportunity to work on a wider variety of events.

Several people have influenced her throughout her journey through life. “My parents had a very strong influence on me, in by upbringing, [my brothers], as well,” Brouwer says. “The people in my life have all set high standards for me to keep striving toward excellence and to be a better version of me as a person, a parent, an employee, a friend, a boss. I hope that those high standards and expectations I have learned along the way can be an influence to the team I work with and the people in my life.”

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