Xcel Energy and the Downtown Community Partnership (DCP) have announced the 17th Annual Xcel Energy Holiday Lights Parade Grand Marshal and Junior Grand Marshal. Michelle Kommer, founder and owner of HighRoad Partners, LLC, is the Grand Marshal. Cole Kaiser, Representative of Sanford Children’s Fargo has been named the Junior Grand Marshal. They will lead the parade on Saturday, December 2, 2023, which begins at 6:30 PM.
“We are thrilled to once again sponsor the Xcel Energy Holiday Lights Parade and to have Michelle Kommer as our Grand Marshal,” said Tony Grindberg, Principal Manager of Xcel ND. “Her dedication to the community and her accomplishments in the business world as a Downtown business owner make her an excellent choice to lead the parade. It’s a fantastic way to kick off the holiday season.”
Michelle Kommer is the founder and owner of HighRoad Partners, LLC, which provides HR solutions to employers of all sizes in addition to being a full-service health insurance agency specializing in group employer and individual benefit policies, including Medicare supplements. Before establishing her business, Michelle served as North Dakota’s Commissioner of Labor and Commerce, overseeing diverse economic and workforce initiatives. She boasts over 25 years of private sector experience in human resources, legal, and operational roles, and is a licensed attorney.
Michelle is known for her advocacy for child welfare in North Dakota, founding the North Dakota Heart Gallery in 2007. She’s also a passionate speaker on healthy female workplace relationships and has received various accolades for her contributions. Michelle’s educational background includes degrees from Mayville State University, the University of Mary, and the University of North Dakota School of Law. She is the proud mom of 3 strong and smart daughters, and recently became a downtown resident along with her two dogs.
At the young age of 6 years old Cole Kaiser is already a cancer survivor who has overcome incredible odds. Diagnosed with Wilms’ tumor in March of 2023, a cancer of the kidney that accounts for about 6% of all childhood cancer cases, Cole began his chemotherapy treatment at Sanford Children’s and Sanford Roger Maris Cancer Center in April. As of October 20th, 2023 he has rang his end-of-treatment bell and is looking forward to a happy and healthy life with his parents Mike and Bryana.
Each year, the Xcel Energy Holiday Lights Parade attracts thousands of spectators throughout the Fargo-Moorhead community. This event features approximately 75 spectacular parade floats, marching units, equestrian entries, and more. Beginning in Downtown Moorhead, the route crosses the Red River on NP Ave and proceeds through Downtown Fargo on Broadway. Full details about the 2023 Xcel Energy Holiday Lights Parade can be found here.