From the Editor

It's fair to say we all could use some support these days. From working mothers to stay-at-home students, from the recently unemployed to small local business owners, from family members separated by social distancing to health care workers of every kind, women all over the region are feeling the strain of an unprecedented year. Women are so frequently looked to as the providers of the support workplaces, families and schools need to function that it begs the question: who is supporting us?

It's easy to feel you have no safety net in times like these-like the weight of the world is on your shoulders. But I have learned to pay attention to all the people who, in ways big and small, are threads weaving together the fabric that keeps me aloft. There's my husband and his calm presence. There are my kids, who are inspiring even as they forget to upload their homework and have the volume turned up way too high in their Zoom classrooms. There are my co-workers, who keep us moving forward through all the challenges, and there are friends near and far, with whom I solve the world's problems on morning runs or FaceTime chats.

When we start examining our support systems, and the precious people in them, it's impossible not to also feel gratitude. Stress turns to thankfulness, brittleness begins to soften and, despite it all, we are able to recognize the blessings around us.

We at Coulee Region Women are immensely grateful for all the people, businesses and organizations that give us so much support. Our team is composed of talented and dedicated women who-with their skills in writing, editing, graphic design, photography and, very importantly, sales-combine their talents to produce each issue. And we are grateful for our readers, who pick up each issue, read it, comment on it and send us ideas.

Finally, and firmly, we could not create each issue of Coulee Region Women without our advertisers. Some are big, some are small; some have been with us from the very beginning, and some are new. We appreciate every single one and the support they have given us over the years-especially now. Take time this issue to look through their ads and lend them your support as well. Our team, our advertisers, our readers-all of you are part of the intricate and important support system that lets us share the stories of women in our region.

And what great stories they are. In this issue, dedicated to "Support Systems," we celebrate stories of women supporting women, beginning with the many women who have served as midwives at Gundersen Health System over the past 45 years. We meet young professionals who serve in their careers and their communities. We highlight organizations that have helped families navigate online learning during school closures, and we show you ways to support your favorite arts organizations in a time when you can't just purchase a ticket. If you're in need of support yourself, we turn you to resources such as Great Rivers 2-1-1 and the advice of local medical professionals. And if you need an escape from your daily cares, we happily support you in doing so by offering you a tour of a beautiful local home, inspiring ideas for supporting your wardrobe as well as local shops, and a little "supportive" humor.

Especially now, as 2020 closes with the holiday season and hope for a better new year, please do what you can to seek support for yourself and to support those around you-your families, your colleagues and the local businesses and organizations you love. It's that support that will see us through this and ensure our community stays strong.

Betty Christiansen



Download past issues here …

What is inside this month's issue:

A Labor of Love
Gundersen Health System midwives celebrate 45 years of supporting La Crosse's mothers.

Personal & Professional
For the Health of the Community
Strategic consultant Marissa Dickinson is working toward a healthier tomorrow, one project at a time.

Support in Different Spheres
Kelsey Martin fills support roles in areas of mental health and technology.

Healthy Living
Good Bones
Don't wait for a fracture to focus on bone health.

Hands-on Help for Virtual Learning
Community organizations provide places for students to go when there is no in-person school.

The Home of Their Dreams
A local chiropractic duo has made their perfect house a reality.

Maintaining a Healthy Immune System
How to eat for health during the seasonal flu and Covid-19.

Answering the Call
Great Rivers 2-1-1 offers around-the-clock access to information about community services.

Retail Therapy
Over the Top
Winter outerwear puts the "fun" in functional.

Arts & Entertainment
The Show Will Go On
Here are four ways you can keep local arts organizations going until live events return.

The Power to Vote
High-society suffragists provided celebrity support in securing women the right to vote.

Let's Show Some Support
A well-fitting bra can be transformative. Now, just to find it.


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