Carlton County Digital Equity Profile – ranked 73

Every year, the Blandin on Broadband blog does County Broadband Profiles (and will do again when the new maps come out) but given federal opportunities are making it possible to get funding for access and adoption, I thought I’d try to present information for counties to assess their digital equity standing (see table below) and give options for who to contact locally for more information.


Carlton County ranks 73 out of 87 counties for digital equity. One area that seems weak is in the use and adoption of technology. The ranking for lack of computer is 67, lack of broadband access is 65 and lack of broadband subscription is 71 percent. An initiative that raises awareness and interest in technology might encourage greater use. It looks like the libraries have been  strong partners in the past; maybe there’s an opportunity to reach parents through the kids or create more programming for adults too.

Scroll down for details and suggested resources for more information.

Blandin Foundation is using the Microsoft Digital Equity Tool to determine needs by county and make high level recommendations for next steps to consider based on the data. (With special thanks to Carter Grupp, Broadband Coordinator Broadband Coordinator at American Connection Project for Otter Tail County.) Visit the tool if you want to look up more statistics on your community.

Demographic Data and Ranking (out of 87)


Carlton County Ranking
Access to 100/20 54
No bachelors 45
No HS degree 25
Below 150% poverty (last 12 months) 49
Below poverty (last 12 months) 65
Disability 59
No computer 67
No broadband access 65
No subscription 71
Overall average 73

The map below shows digital inequity by census tract. The bluer the better; yellow and orange colors indicate more inequity. This map can be helpful in figuring out which parts of your county need the most help.

So where do you go to talk to people in the county about digit equity plans? Good places to start include:



Regional Development Commission

More Resources:

  • Courtney Dietsche
    Library Director
    Cloquet Public Library
    320 14th Street
    Cloquet, MN  55720
  • Michael Cary, Superintendent
    Cloquet Public Schools
    (218) 879-6721

There’s a lot to take in but sometimes it’s also helpful to see what a community has done in the past, so we’ve gathered specific projects funded through the Blandin Foundation:

Project Owner Project Name Description
Carlton County Carlton County Robust Network Feasibility Study Project support to conduct a feasibility study to understand options for improving broadband infrastructure and services within the county
City of Cloquet Makerspace Hot Spots Project support to provide Cloquet and Moose Lake libraries with makerspace equipment and training, and six mobile hot spots to provide home access for un- and underserved residents of the County
City of Moose Lake Connect Moose Lake Project support to expand the Moose Lake Community Digital Messaging System to other community entities enabling them to broadcast messages to  the public
Cloquet Public Library “Appy Life“ Library iPad Training project Project support to provide mobile technology, Wi-Fi access and training to staff, county residents and visitors of the three Carlton County libraries
ISD 94 (Cloquet) iPads for Lifelong Learning Project support for technology training and resources for enrichment activities and parenting skills to pre-K students and their families
Moose Lake Community Schools Rural Education Community Utilization Expansion Project support to provide mobile devices to two rural school districts to increase educational attainment and to provide technology training through community education
Moose Lake Community Schools School Bus Wi-Fi Hot Spots Capital support to equip school activity busses with Wi-Fi to provide access for students to be able to work on homework assignments when travelling long distances


This entry was posted in MN Broadband Equity Profiles 2022 by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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