Alcoholics Anonymous arrived in Minnesota during the Armistice Day Blizzard in November of 1940. Two men, A.A. members visiting from Chicago, made a 12th step call on a man by the name of Pat C. Shortly after, A.A. meetings started at 2218 First Avenue South in Minneapolis. It didn’t take long for those meetings to spawn other meetings at new locations. By the early 60s Alcoholics Anonymous had grown beyond Minneapolis, with groups meeting in the surrounding suburbs, including Richfield, Robbinsdale, Fridley and Columbia Heights.
As A.A. grew in Greater Minneapolis, members saw an increasing need for 12th step services. They had a vision of an Intergroup Service Office that would function as a central hub, providing vital services such as phone answering, coordinating 12 step calls, and publishing a meeting directory.
The Minneapolis Intergroup Office opened in September 1968 at 24 East Franklin Avenue. Since then the office has moved several times. The office moved to its current location, 7204 West 27th Street in St Louis Park, on August 1, 2000.
Volunteers are the heart of Minneapolis Intergroup. There are more than 500 A.A. members ready and willing to serve by answering the hotline, being contacted for 12th step calls, speaking at non-A.A. meetings and coordinating Intergroup sponsored events.
All across the greater Minneapolis Area, A.A. groups stay in touch with the Intergroup office by electing an Intergroup Representative. Intergroup Representatives act as a conduit between their group and Intergroup. The reps attend monthly meetings to hear updates on office activities, get their groups involved in 12-step opportunities, and carry their group’s voice on a variety of Intergroup matters.
Minneapolis Intergroup is governed by a 12 member Board of Directors, who are elected by Intergroup Representatives to three-year terms – with four directors rotating each year. Because of this level of commitment, our by-laws require that all A.A. members elected to the board have a minimum of 5 years of continuous sobriety. The Annual Meeting and Board elections are held the 4th Thursday in September.
In keeping with the 8th tradition, the office also has paid special workers. This includes an Office Manager and Staff Assistants, all active members of our Fellowship. The staff’s commitment to carrying the A.A. message ensures that the doors will be open at 9 a.m. Monday through Saturday.
The Intergroup office is self-supporting, operated by the members for the members. In keeping with this principle of self-support, Intergroup does not accept contributions from outside the A.A. Fellowship. 7th Tradition Contributions from A.A. groups and individual A.A. members, along with literature sales, provide the funds required so that your Intergroup Service Office can continue to provide vital services.
The early Board members could not have predicted we would play such a large role in our community. Our services are more in demand than ever. It’s the spirit of participation that makes this possible. In that spirit, let us not forget that at this very moment a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous is either standing by to answer our phone, or is now speaking to a member of the community who may have a drinking problem.