“If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.” Mother Teresa


John Henry Foster (JHF) employees gave back by participating in The Open Door’s 9th annual event – Empty Bowls – held on March 8th at the St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Eagan, MN. The Empty Bowl event had over 14 different soups and chilis to sample donated from local restaurants (suggested donation $20 per handcrafted bowl). In addition to taking home the unique bowl, they could also take part in the ART10 drawing (tickets $5 each) with a chance on 1,2,3 or all 10 pieces of art donated by local artists to help raise funds for The Open Door.

John Henry Foster is passionate about making a difference in our local community and proud to be an annual sponsor of The Open Door with a total donation this year of $10,000! The annual partnership program allows the Open Door’s most ardent supporters to simplify their giving in a meaningful and consistent way, while knowing they are making a difference in their local community.

JHF employees appreciated the chance to use their gifts and reach out to the community. Read on for a summary of their feedback after attending the recent event below.

What surprised you most?

  • The number of people there
  • That it would take 75 hours a week at minimum wage to afford a 2-bedroom apartment
  • How well organized it was
  • The work volunteers put into it
  • The amount of talented people who made the bowls and auctioned items
  • How many young people were volunteers there

What did you enjoy most?

  • The “pick out your bowl and keep it” and getting kids involved in painting them
  • Meeting new people at the table
  • Seeing people enjoy the variety of soups and desserts and it was nice seeing the families there
  • The soup that was donated was very good
  • The large number of people enjoying themselves
  • It was good to learn how they operate (The Open Door)












JHF’s Kris Mickels (Automation Specialist) & Linda Halvorson (Receptionist) at the event

How does it make you feel that you’re a part of a company that sponsors The Open Door and events like these for our community?

  • I feel very proud that I work for an organization that is so generous
  • It felt good to be able to experience how it helps the community
  • It feels great when you can take time away from your busy schedule and participate to help others, looking into volunteering there
  • I am so proud to be a part of a caring company who supports such worthy organizations
  • I am happy to be a part of a company that donates to those less fortunate
  • I am proud to work for a company that gives back so much to the community


The Open Door is a hunger relief organization dedicated to ending local hunger through access to healthy food. Through its collective programs, The Open Door addresses hunger by serving almost 5,000 Dakota County residents each month, and distributes over 1 million pounds of food annually, 70% of which is fresh and/or perishable.  Clients are able to access healthy food choices through a fixed-site food pantry in Eagan, multiple Mobile Pantry sites, the Mobile Lunchbox, and the Garden to Table program. In addition, they provide Family Advocacy and Community resource referrals that link families to social service agencies. For further information regarding the Open Door organization, as well as their programs and events, click here https://theopendoorpantry.org/.


For 80 years, John Henry Foster has been a leading distributor of Industrial Air Compressor Systems and Electrical, Robotic and Pneumatic Automation solutions serving clients in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota and northern Iowa. We are known for providing mobile service, maintenance, air system audits and design of electro-pneumatic and compressed air flow controls.

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