Recognition of Chamber Volunteers
The Ambassador Committee promotes the Chamber and assists in bringing new members into the organization. The Diplomat Committee works to maintain membership strength in the Chamber and provide outstanding customer service to members. Their volunteer service helps keep the Chamber strong.
Featured Ambassadors and Diplomats this month include: April Meyerink, Black Hills Federal Credit Union, current chair of the committee and has been an ambassador for three years; Mike Hauck, Accord Commercial Real Estate, LLC, 12 years as an ambassador.
Tammy Beintema, JDRF, 11 years as a diplomat; Lindy Hill, Avera Health, four years as a diplomat; Debra Peterson, CorTrust Bank, 20 years as a diplomat; and Cole Robbins, U.S. Bank, one year as a diplomat.
Diplomats who complete all their member contact calls each month are part of the 100 Club. One member of the 100 Club is recognized as the Service Star. The December Service Star was awarded to Brad Nelson, Keller Williams Realty of Sioux Falls. Gita Hendricks, MG & Assoc./Yoli BB, was recognized as the Event Champion for consistently attending Chamber events.
Diplomat Team of the Month for December went to Captain Cindi Johnson, Spectrum Marketing Services; James Payer II, Girl Scouts-Dakota Horizons; Angie Wahl, J Wahl Home Inspection; and Lenn Patterson George, West Plains Engineering, Inc.
New Faces & Promotions
Mike Young has been promoted to the position of President of Sioux Falls Tower. Young joined Sioux Falls Tower in 2003 and has served in the roles of tower technician, crew chief, project manager, and most recently as chief operating officer (COO). Craig Snyder will remain with the company in his role as CEO, and will coordinate responsibilities with Young as he assumes the role of president.
Minnwest Bank has hired Megan Brown as a VP Commercial Banker. She has more than 25 years of financial services industry experience with roles in business banking, business development, and risk management. Chad Pederson also joined the bank as a Business Development Officer-Depository & Cash Management Services. Pederson has 15 years of experience in account & portfolio management and sales in a variety of industries, including banking, hospitality, and technology.
The Helpline Center Board of Directors has promoted Janet Kittams to Chief Executive Officer. Kittams has served as President of the Helpline Center since 2013. She began as a Helpline Center volunteer in 1993 before joining the agency full-time in 1994. She left the organization in 2007 but returned in 2010 as its Executive Director. Under Kittams's leadership, the Helpline Center has experienced significant growth in programs and resources.
Architecture Incorporated has hired Manisha Shrestha as an architectural intern. Shrestha received a master's degree in Structural Engineering from South Dakota State University and a bachelors' degree in architecture from the Institute of Engineering, Pulchowk Campus, Nepal.
Kalen K. Biord has become a partner in the firm of Davenport, Evans, Hurwitz & Smith, LLP. Biord is a member of the firm's Transactions and General Business group. He joined the firm in 2017 after practicing law for several years in Wyoming. His practice focuses on real estate transactions, entity formation, purchases and sales of businesses, leasing and financing agreements, natural resources law and wind energy development.
Karleen Kurvink joins Houston Engineering, Inc. in Sioux Falls as an Administrative Assistant. She will support staff with daily administrative duties, including being the friendly face welcoming office visitors. A Sioux Falls native, Kurvink brings more than 30 years of administrative experience working in the engineering industry.
MetaBank has hired Mark Bickett as the new Director of Risk Management Systems and Ryan Kessinger as consumer lending business program manager. Bickett is a graduate of the University of South Dakota and has two decades of experience working with multiple companies across multiple industries, private and public, managing and improving the analytic capabilities of financial reporting systems. Kessinger has a decade of experience in the banking industry in various roles including credit card customer service, sales and mortgage departments.
MetaBank has promoted the following eight staff members: John Parsons to HR recruiter; Sheila Wolfe to compliance director; Tina Buhta to director of compliance; Nike Burke to financial intelligence analyst II; Amanda Krueger to senior compliance analyst; Drew Piearson to senior risk analyst; Jarred Stohr to security analyst I; and Benjamin Brouillette to BSA/AML compliance analyst.
Workers' compensation insurance provider, RAS has hired five new team members and promoted two. Susan Montgomery joined as Policy Services Representative and has a long history of admin and medical experience. Michelle McAvoy joined as Claims Customer Service Representative, she previously handled surety bond claims for 12 years. Kelsey Hart began as an Accounting Clerk. Kayla Taverna is the Human Resources Coordinator. Kelsie Kruger joined as Claims Customer Service Representative, she has 14 years of customer service experience. Chandale Johnson was promoted to New Business Development Assistant from Claims Customer Service Representative. Rudy Kreyer was promoted to Business Development Manager from Business Development Specialist.
Nick Howey and Chad Huston have joined AmesburyTruth. Howey is the Environmental Health & Safety Engineer with responsibility for the Sioux Falls and Fremont, Nebraska plants. He has an extensive background in safety program management. Huston is Maintenance Team Lead. He has 19 years of experience in manufacturing and supervisory roles. AmesburyTruth also promoted Emily Shearer to Finance Manager. She has been with the company since 2014.
The First National Bank in Sioux Falls welcomes Jennifer Reecy and Don L. Rahn CFP®. Reecy joins as Chief Employee Experience Officer. Through a diverse career path, she brings a depth of leadership, coaching, and consulting experience. Rahn has returned to the bank as a Wealth Advisor. He has 26 years' experience in the financial planning and investment management industries.
The First National Bank in Sioux Falls has promoted several employees. Bill Anderson to Executive Vice President; Teresa Ulven to Vice President; Yvette Christion to Vice President; Matt Adamson to Assistant Vice President; Veronica Paulson to Assistant Vice President; Carrie Reider to Officer; Chase Hoffman to Officer; Maggie Groteluschen, Vice President, recently transitioned to Personal Wealth Manager.
Honors & Awards
Jackie Wentworth, Sioux Falls Convention & Visitors Bureau, received the Ruth Ziolkowski Outstanding Hospitality & Customer Service Award. The award was presented during the 2019 Governor's Conference on Tourism to four visitor industry members from across South Dakota. This award honors tourism industry professionals who display outstanding and genuine hospitality to visitors.
Sammons Financial Group donated $1,015,000 to organizations in the Sioux Falls area during 2018. In addition, employees volunteered approximately 2,150 hours of their time to local causes. For many years, Sammons has supported the Great Plains Zoo and Delbridge Museum of Natural History, which focuses on education, conservation, recreation, and discovery. This year, they contributed $50,000 to help with signage for the zoo's newest and most popular exhibit – Fortress of the Bears.
Employees of Smithfield Foods donated more than $568,000 to the Sioux Empire United Way. The company's 2018 fundraising campaign had an employee participation rate of more than 85 percent.
Voyage Federal Credit Union announced that its CEO Darla Erb will retire effective December 31, 2019. Current COO, Jeff Schmidt, has been appointed as CEO-elect and will assume the role of Chief Executive Officer effective January 1, 2020. Erb has served in her current role for 21 years and the credit union industry for 38 years. During Erb's tenure as Chief Executive Officer at Voyage, she played a critical role in helping the credit union adapt to industry changes - most importantly in the areas of technology and culture.
Business Resource Network's Board of Directors elected new officers and members for 2019. Leadership includes Chair Bonnie Duffy, Duffy Appraisals; Vice Chair Nicole Freesemann, Raven Industries, Inc.; and Secretary/Treasurer Pat Herman, Center for Disabilities. Joel Sylvester, Five Star Call Centers, joins the board as a new member. Other board members include: Sara Garbe, South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation; Michelle Grimm, Berry Global; Kellie Hauglid, SD Rehabilitation Center for the Blind; Dawn Ingalls, Avera; Vicki Nelson, Division of Rehabilitation Services; Heather Springer, Woods Fuller Schultz & Smith P.C.; and Dawn Uthe, Carsforsale.com.