After vacationing in the Upper Peninsula for the past 20 years, Kalen Carlson, along with her husband Michael and children Jack and Collin, decided to make the move from Chicago in May 2021 after falling in love with a house in Laurium and the surrounding neighborhood. While they didn’t have jobs lined up when they moved, they knew that everything would work out once they arrived. 

Now, Kalen is deeply integrated into her community as a licensed CPA at Sturos CPA, P.C. in Calumet where she works with a variety of clients doing audits, taxes, and advisory services. “I love that I’m working with businesses in the Keweenaw,” she said. “It made me realize how many businesses and entrepreneurs we have here, which is really exciting.” Outside of work, she sits on the Laurium Planning Commission and is actively working on initiatives with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

Like most people, Kalen and her family made the move to the U.P. because they wanted the small town experience with access to the many outdoor activities that the region provides. A supportive community, great schools, and excellent career opportunities were just an added bonus.

“We feel so supported in this community by our neighbors and coworkers,” Kalen said. “It’s a good, safe place to raise our children and send them to a great school like CLK. And I love the ability to be active every day. It’s so easy and accessible to bike on my lunch break or after work.” Kalen noted that she even snowshoes to work when the snow starts to fall. 

Kalen encourages others that along with the excellent quality of life the region offers, there are many opportunities available–from remote work to working for one of the amazing businesses in the area. “It’s a great place to build a life,” she said.