News Release

8th Annual Goldzilla Marks Unveiling of New Name and Brand for Retrieve a Golden of the Midwest (RAGOM): Reflects Growth and Success

September 11, 2017

Contact: Marti Jones [email protected]

Retrieve a Golden of Minnesota, known for rescuing Golden Retrievers and Golden Retriever mixes, announced today that it is changing its name to Retrieve a Golden of the Midwest (RAGOM) and debuting new branding. The change exemplifies the progress and expanded territory of volunteers who rescue, foster, and find forever homes for Golden Retrievers and Golden mixes in need.

“RAGOM grew beyond its borders of Minnesota and now serves Iowa, North and South Dakota, and western Wisconsin. We are now the second largest Golden rescue organization in the U.S.,” said Jane Nygaard, co-founder of RAGOM. “The new name and brand ushers in a new era of RAGOM to help even more Goldens in need.”

In coordination with Goldzilla (RAGOM’s fun fair and walk for rescue event, and the largest gathering of Goldens in America) and its new name, RAGOM also launched a new website to inspire volunteers, adopters, and donors to advance the mission of RAGOM.

To celebrate this milestone, hundreds of Golden Retrievers, their parents, and dog lovers of every kind gathered at Goldzilla in New Brighton, Minnesota to walk in a 5K, play fetch, splash in the lake, and visit vendors. The event paid tribute to its founders, Jane and Hank Nygaard, who started the organization in 1985 when they rescued a Golden Retriever from a shelter and provided her with love, devotion, and veterinary care until they found a forever home for her.

They didn’t stop with her and began what became their life’s purpose and started Retrieve a Golden of Minnesota. Now, more than 450 volunteers have been inspired by the Nygaard’s and retrieved and cared for 8,500 Goldens from commercial breeders, homelessness, neglect, abuse, or surrender.

There are myriad touching stories of the dogs that RAGOM serves whether it be Tank, a senior dog who has recently earned his stripes as a hospice therapy dog; Kayla, a dog who was used for commercial breeding who is now a happy pup in a stable home; or the many Goldens from puppies to seniors who simply find their forever homes. Several times a month, RAGOM holds meet and greets providing an opportunity to meet dogs available for adoption.

The new brand represents the love, joy, and unconditional love Golden Retrievers and Golden mixes bring to our lives. Yet despite their wonderful temperament, each year there are hundreds of homeless Goldens and Golden mixes who need a second chance, and that is RAGOM mission.


RAGOM is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that began as Retrieve a Golden of Minnesota in 1985, with one homeless Golden Retriever in a shelter whose time was up. RAGOM’s founder, Jane Nygaard had her spayed and vaccinated and found her a loving forever home. Since then, countless volunteers and generous donors have stepped up with the energy, selflessness, love, and funds to rescue and rehome more than 9,000 Golden Retrievers and Golden Retriever mixes.

In 2017, RAGOM adopted a new name—Retrieve a Golden of the Midwest—to reflect our dedication to expand our rescue efforts from our original home state of Minnesota to include Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, and western Wisconsin.