Brown College Student Sells Handcrafted Chair for $3000

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Think Mutual Bank purchase provides support to the Boys & Girls Club.

This year marked the 7th annual “A Chair Affair” charity auction supporting the Boys and Girls Club of Rochester, Minn. “A Chair Affair” features hand-decorated chairs individually designed by artists from around the country. In support of the charity, interior design student at Brown College, Rhonda Charlson, donated her one-of-a-kind chair that she designed and built for the Furniture Design Concepts class. Thirty chairs out of the 50 that were donated were recognized, juried and auctioned at the gala event. Think Mutual Bank won Charlson’s chair for $3,000.00 and this was the highest bid for any single item at the event. Think Mutual Bank is the premier sponsor of “A Chair Affair,” and plans to display its newly acquired art piece at one of its office facilities.

Since 2003, “A Chair Affair” has become the signature gala for the community giving the Boys & Girls Club of Rochester the ability to achieve its mission: Empowering young people to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring community members. When “A Chair Affair” began, it started with two chairs and raised $14,000. Six years later, 50 chairs were donated, 550 attendees were seated, and $160,000 was raised.

Justin Wilwerding, Brown College Interior Design Department Chair says, “Even in these times of economic challenge, good design can play a role in enhancing lives. Designers can contribute through good planning and creative problem solving, as well as donating their time and their abilities they can deliver value through charitable activities. Good design is an important value throughout our culture and the Interior Design students at Brown College understand that we can help in a range of ways.”

“Bridging Possibilities,” was designed by Charlson as a mirror of self and earth. The legs are crafted from solid walnut, representing an anchor to earth. The arching arms, are crafted from red birch, as a representation of a bridge from earth to the sky, and from the glass seat of the chair, the user will find an ideal place to sit and ponder bridging their possibilities.

About Brown College
Brown has enjoyed huge success training and graduating students in technology, design, and broadcast fields for more than 60 years. Brown College offers programs in criminal justice, broadcasting, business management, design, and technology. Founded in 1946, Brown College provides students with the knowledge, technical skills and hands-on training needed to succeed in fields such as network and software development, game design and development, graphic design, radio broadcasting, television production, digital media, criminal justice, interior design, and business management. Brown College is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). For more information visit

Justin Wilwerding
Brown College


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