Kathy Cargill has relatives and neighbors fearful she will SUE if they speak up about her or her plans to snap up 13 properties in quiet Minnesota beach town

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Written By Maya Cantina
  • The wife of billionaire James R. Cargill II has reportedly signed NDAs with some former associates
  • Cargill, 66, drew fury when she began buying up and razing homes in the sleepy seaside community of Park Point last year
  • She not only refused to share her plans for the properties, but insulted the community and Duluth Mayor Roger Reinert in a Wall Street Journal piece

The controversial wife of a Minnesota billionaire who snapped up dozens of properties in a sleepy beach town has threatened to sue relatives and neighbors who speak about her in the media.

Kathy Cargill, 66, became the target of suspicion when she began buying homes on Park Point, a sandbar between Lake Superior and Duluth Harbor, in December 2022.

Fury mounted when she bad-mouthed the community and its mayor in a Wall Street Journal piece, referring to them as ‘small-minded’ and claiming the mayor had ‘peed in his Cheerios’ by asking her to disclose her vision for the properties.

When journalists from the Minneapolis Star-Tribune attempted to dig into Cargill’s private life, sources close to her remained tight-lipped.

Dozens of relatives, neighbors, ex-coworkers and business associates declined to speak. Some told the publication they were fearful of being sued, while others claimed to have signed nondisclosure agreements.

When one Star-Tribune reporter managed to reach her for comment, Cargill ‘directed an expletive at the reporter before hanging up.’

Kathy Cargill, 66, has reportedly threatened to sue former associates who speak about her with members of the media

The wife of billionaire heir James R. Cargill II began snapping up properties in Park Point, Minnesota last year and refused to disclose her plans

The wife of billionaire heir James R. Cargill II began snapping up properties in Park Point, Minnesota last year and refused to disclose her plans

Amid a housing shortage in the city of Duluth, the move was not well received. Nine of the homes have already been razed, while three others are slated for demolition

Amid a housing shortage in the city of Duluth, the move was not well received. Nine of the homes have already been , while three others are slated for demolition

The Wisconsin native is married to James R. Cargill II, one of 12 heirs to agricultural giant Cargill. At the time of writing, Forbes estimated his net worth at around $4.6 billion.

Before marrying into the fabulously wealthy family in 2012, Cargill worked as a real estate agent and a trail manager for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

While the couple lead a private life, Cargill was featured in a 2019 video showing off her pricey collection of McLaren supercars.

Around four years, she made waves when a company called North Shore LS, LLC., began purchasing properties on her behalf for far more than their assessed value. Several of the homes, described by Cargill as ‘pieces of crap,’ were knocked down.

Amid a housing shortage in the city of Duluth, the move was not well received.  Mayor Roger Reinert wrote to the billionaire asking her to share her plans for the 13 homes and 22 parcels of land she’d snapped up.

Nine of the homes have been demolished and three have been permitted for demolition.

‘Any loss of residential housing is not helpful,’ Reinert wrote in his appeal, requesting that she or her representatives meet with city staff and members of the Park Point Community Club. 

Rather than enlighten him, Cargill unleashed scathing criticism on the mayor and the community at large in a Wall Street Journal piece last month.

Among the purchases is a swathe of land at 1314 Minnesota Avenue. The home in that lot was purchased in February 2023 and subsequently demolished

Among the purchases is a swathe of land at 1314 Minnesota Avenue. The home in that lot was purchased in February 2023 and subsequently demolished

1239 Minnesota Avenue was purchased for $500,000 although it was appraised at only $239,000

1221 Minnesota Avenue was purchased for $300,000

1239 Minnesota Avenue was purchased for $500,000 although it was appraised at only $239,500. Up the street, 1221 Minnesota Avenue was purchased for $300,000

Cargill drew fury when she referred to the community as 'small-minded' and asserted Mayor Roger Reinert had 'peed in his Cheerios' by questioning her motives

Cargill drew fury when she referred to the community as ‘small-minded’ and asserted Mayor Roger Reinert had ‘peed in his Cheerios’ by questioning her motives

In relation for her remarks, locals donated hundreds of boxes of cereal to a city food drive. Reinert (far left, back) was photographed with a box of Cheerios at the drop-off location

In relation for her remarks, locals donated hundreds of boxes of cereal to a city food drive. Reinert (far left, back) was photographed with a box of Cheerios at the drop-off location

Other locals have been more forthcoming, including those who strung a banner reading 'It's nice to be important but it's more important to be nice' along Minnesota Avenue

Other locals have been more forthcoming, including those who strung a banner reading ‘It’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice’ along Minnesota Avenue

The 66-year-old claimed her original plans were to enhance the neighborhood with pickleball courts and a coffee shop, but she had changed her mind.

‘The good plans that I have down there for beautifying, updating and fixing up Park Point park or putting up that sports court, forget it,’ she said. ‘There’s another community out there with more welcoming people than that small-minded community.’

As for the mayor, Cargill professed he ‘kind of peed in his Cheerios’ by questioning her motives, ‘and definitely I’m not going to do anything to benefit that community.’

In the days that followed, locals donated hundreds of boxes of the breakfast cereal to a city food drive. Reinert himself was pictured posing with a box at the drop-off spot.

The campaign, dubbed the ‘Cheerio Challenge’ also raked in an estimated $50,000 and contributions from far-flung states like Florida and California.

Other members of the community were more forthcoming about their disgust for Cargill and her remarks.

A banner was strung along a fence on the 2900 block of Minnesota Avenue, where Cargill owns several properties, reading, ‘It’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice.’ The protest piece was swiftly removed. 

Reinert declined to respond to Cargill directly. But in a statement he said, ‘We need to be mindful of housing. We’re talking every day about how we can add to the inventory, and we’re going to remain vigilant on that issue.’ 

Cargill has refused to communicate with the city, according to officials, who have been advised to avoid stoking her rage any further.

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