AUG. 3, 2015 - VOL. 50 No. 11

Chair's Column
New Members
Member Anniversaries
Cover Story
Other News
Faces & Places
Ribbon Cuttings
Print Advertisers


Frequently Asked Questions
About the YPN
The Summit Agenda
Keynote Speakers
Breakout Sessions

Crossroads Summit provides
development opportunities for all ages

By Amy Smolik
Marketing & Communications Manager

The third Crossroads Summit will be held Thursday, Aug. 20 – a one-day conference designed to allow networking, learning and sharing with young professionals and business and community leaders from across Sioux Falls. It´s sponsored by the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce Young Professionals Network and will be held at the Sioux Falls Convention Center.

In its seven years of existence, the Chamber´s Young Professionals Network has grown to more than 1,000 members and developed this solid personal and professional development conference that is held every other year. The event co-chairs are Marty DesLauriers, UBS, and Amy DesLauriers, Lawrence & Schiller. For more about the DesLauriers´, see the Five Questions segment on pages 52-53.

While the Summit is hosted and organized by the YPN, it is open to everyone in the community to attend. It features two keynote speakers at breakfast and lunch and several breakout sessions covering a wide array of topics. Many topics may appeal to younger professionals but the conference is designed to allow everyone to take away something by attending. Seating is limited, and spots are filling up fast. Registration is available at

"I think it´s a great event that provides motivation and inspiration to all levels of an organization," said Wendy Alexander, Home Federal Bank. "We have had our young professionals attend in the past, as well as some of our more seasoned professionals. It´s just a great event with many great nuggets of information to learn about or even be reminded of."

There are also options to attend only the breakfast and luncheon keynotes. The breakfast keynote speaker is Jason Schechterle, a former Phoenix Police Officer whose life was forever changed when he was trapped inside his police car while it burned. His story is one of life, rebirth and transformation. The luncheon keynote is Ken Schmidt, a former director of communications strategy for Harley-Davidson Motor Company. Schmidt played an active role in one of the most celebrated turn-arounds in corporate history and got paid to ride motorcycles.

Registration is already on track to top the 2013 event, with many attendees coming back. The event features a good mixture of inspirational speakers and breakout sessions, said Tara Twedt, Architecture Incorporated.

"There are multiple options to choose from that meet most everyone´s areas of interest," Twedt said. "I would encourage others to attend, and I´m excited to go again myself." Previous Summit attendee Chris Filsinger, CorTrust Bank, said he was energized after attending the event two years ago.

"From learning about the importance of having a mentor within your career, to learning about how to protect my family through estate planning, there were so many great things I took away from the Crossroads Summit. It was also a great opportunity to visit with other young professionals in the Sioux Falls area. I can´t think of many other opportunities when you get a chance to be in a room with so many other like-minded individuals," Filsinger said. "I chose to sign up again for the simple fact that the Crossroads Summit provides a tremendous value for my investment. What I will ultimately get out of the day will be exponentially higher than the cost to attend. That in itself makes the decision a no brainer. If you want to become more valuable to the company you work for, the business you own, or the community you live in, the Crossroads Summit is a great way to do so. Not to mention, it´s a great opportunity to get out of the office for a day!"

More than 20 breakout sessions are being offered, with topics ranging from civic engagement to financial planning to how to unblock your creative mind. Dan Menke, Pride Neon, said he enjoyed the breakout sessions at the 2013 event.

"There was such a wide variety of topics, I had a hard time narrowing down which ones to attend. All of them were very informative and I took a lot out of them," he said. "The Crossroads Summit offers a great opportunity for me to meet people and hear speakers that I probably wouldn´t come across on a normal day. From the breakfast keynote, breakout sessions, to the lunch keynote, you´re bound to take something away that will ultimately make you a better leader.

Community service is also a cornerstone of the Crossroads Summit. Attendees can hear from community leaders about ways to get more engaged. They can also support The Banquet by bringing school supplies as part of the annual S.O.S. drive – Supply Our Students. The Banquet is the only agency that provides school supplies for students in need. The biggest push for supplies comes before the start of the school year. See the box on page 29 for more information about what supplies are needed.

The Crossroads Summit is made possible because of support from the Sioux Falls area business community. Gold sponsors are Argus Leader Media; CorTrust Bank; and Northwestern Mutual. Silver sponsors are Avera; The First National Bank in Sioux Falls; First PREMIER Bank/PREMIER Bankcard; KELO Television; Sanford Health; and SDN Communications. Bronze sponsors are: Beck & Hofer Construction; CenturyLink; Citi; CNA Surety; Cutler Law Firm; Davenport Evans Hurwitz & Smith; DocuTAP; Dorsey & Whitney Trust Company, LLC; Eide Bailly LLP; Great Western Bank; Home Federal Bank; Journey Group; Meta Payment Systems; Midcontinent Communications; Novak Sanitary Services; Pride Neon; Raven Industries; U.S. Bank; and Woods, Fuller, Schultz & Smith PC.

"It makes me feel good as a young professional to know that the company I work for is willing to invest and show its commitment to the young professionals in the community," Filsinger said. "Just like any small business, the continued success of CorTrust is dependent upon the growth and strength of the communities we serve. I think CorTrust´s sponsorship of the Crossroads Summit shows that the bank understands the important role young professionals will play in the future success of the community, and it´s great to be a part of that.

For those who are interested in networking, there will be opportunities throughout the day. A Launch Party sponsored by Argus Leader Media the night before will officially kick off activities. It will be held from 4-7 p.m. at the Sioux Falls Convention Center.


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In 2013, Crossroads Summit attendees helped Feeding South Dakota pack backpacks. This year, attendees can bring school supplies to help The Banquet as part of their Project S.O.S.

Attendees are encouraged to bring any of the following supplies to the Crossroads Summit:
Crayons, 24 count
Blue/Black Pens
Crayola Classic Wide-Tip Markers
Colored Pencils, 12 and 24 count
No. 2 Pencils
Scissors, Fiskar Brand Pointed
5-7 in. Ruler, 12 inch and metric
Eraser, Magic Rub or Equal
Looseleaf filler paper, Wide/College-ruled
Spiral Notebook, Wide/College-ruled
Folders, Two Pocket without clasps (Red, Yellow, Green, Blue, Purple ONLY)
Pencil Pouches
Subject Dividers
Ring Binders - 1 inch
Zipper Binder (Middle School)


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Q: I´m not a member of the Young Professionals Network; can I still attend the Crossroads Summit?
A: Yes! The Crossroads Summit is open to everyone in the region. We hope you´ll be interested in learning more about the YPN when you´re at the Summit but you don´t need to be a member in order to attend.

Q: I´m a little outside the age demographic for YPN; can I still attend the Summit?
A: Of course! The Summit provides personal and professional development opportunities for people of all ages. Come on your own or ask a younger professional to join you!

Q: What is the price to attend?
A: The full conference is $99; the breakfast keynote is $25 and the luncheon keynote is $35.

Q: My schedule doesn´t allow me to attend the full day; are there other options?
A: You have several options. You can pay for the entire day, which includes two keynotes (breakfast and lunch) and breakout sessions for $99, and come and go as your schedule allows. Or, you can choose to attend the Breakfast Keynote with Jason Schechterle for $25 or the Luncheon Keynote with Ken Schmidt for $35.

Q: What should I wear?
A: Be comfortable! Some people get cold in meeting rooms; if that´s you, remember a sweater or jacket. Otherwise, business casual is just fine.

Q: What should I bring?
A: Remember your business cards for the new connections you´ll make. We´ll provide you with a notebook and pen when you arrive.

Q: Can I share information on social media?
A: Absolutely! Follow the Sioux Falls Young Professionals Network on Facebook and Twitter (@ypn_siouxfalls). Use the hashtag #SFCrossroads and be sure to tag us in any photos!

Q: How do I register?
A: Go to You can choose to attend the entire summit, breakfast only or lunch only. For more information, contact YPN Manager Lauren Fosheim at or (605) 373-2009.


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The Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce Young Professionals Network (YPN) is a resource, forum and voice in the community. The YPN exists to create business opportunities, support civic involvement and promote an overall investment in the future of the community. It is designed to provide opportunities for young professionals to develop the skills they need to succeed in their chosen profession or occupation and to engage and introduce young professionals to the region´s resources and possibilities.

Membership is open to any young professional, ages 21-39, working/residing in Sioux Falls or a surrounding community. Cost for a membership is $25 for a Chamber member employee, and $50 for a non-Chamber member employee.

The Chamber´s YPN was created in 2009. Since then, more than 1,050 young professionals from the Sioux Falls area have joined. For more information, visit


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Launch Party,
Sioux Falls Convention Center
Sponsored by Argus Leader Media

Featuring live music from the Hegg Brothers,
complimentary hors d´ouevres and beverages.

You don´t need to attend the Crossroads Summit to attend the Launch Party - come network and learn more about the YPN.

Crossroads Summit,
Sioux Falls Convention Center

7:30 -8:15 A.M. REGISTRATION

Speaker Jason Schechterle,
sponsored by CorTrust Bank



12:15 - 1:45 P.M. LUNCH/KEYNOTE
Speaker Ken Schmidt,
sponsored by Northwestern Mutual



Register today!


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Jason Schechterle

Sponsored by Cortrust Bank

Jason Schechterle had one dream – to serve as a Phoenix police officer. After serving four years in the Air Force, he achieved his goal to work on the streets of Phoenix as a rookie police officer at the age of 26. Only 14 months into what was supposed to be a life-long career, his life took an unexpected, dramatic and, at the time, tragic turn.

In March 2001, a taxicab crashed into the rear of Schechterle´s patrol car. Upon impact, his car burst into flames, trapping him inside with temperatures reaching more than 700 degrees. Through a series of miraculous and fateful circumstances, Schechterle survived the crash. He suffered severe burns to more than 40 percent of his body, which drastically altered his appearance. He has undergone more than 50 surgeries just to have the ability to accomplish simple daily tasks the rest of us often take for granted.

Schechterle´s journey chronicles his fight for life, his triumph over tragedy and the inspiration that enables him to continue to overcome unimaginable adversity. His personal narrative exemplifies how the power of the human spirit can never be underestimated or extinguished. His story is one of life, rebirth and transformation.


Ken Schmidt

Sponsored by Northwestern Mutual

Longtime motorcycle enthusiast Ken Schmidt´s formal association with Harley-Davidson began in 1985. As a specialist in corporate positioning and media relations, Schmidt was asked to work with the then-struggling company to help restore its image and create demand for its motorcycles. Within a few short years, Harley-Davidson became one of the most visible and frequently reported-on companies in the world, while sales of its motorcycles rocketed upward. Schmidt became director of Harley-Davidson´s corporate and financial communications and served as its primary spokesperson to the media and the financial communities.

Now, he´s a frequent speaker to business groups and academic communities throughout the world. "I love to startle people by exposing them to proven ideas and concepts they´ve never imagined," he said. "Whether I´m talking about how perfectly average people can do extraordinary things or how to build an entirely new corporate culture, rekindle relationships with customers, or reach out to new ones in completely untraditional ways, I´m teaching people to throw conventional approaches out the window."


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Homeownership: Are You Ready?
Kelli Zimmer,
Sioux Empire Housing Partnership

Financing Your Small Business: What Are My Options?
Lynne Keller Forbes,

Oh No! Not Another Meeting!
Karen Waller and Erica Anderson,

Leadership & Managing Change
Bill Albrecht,
Argus Leader Media

Scratch The Dirt & Turn Over The Rocks
Bobbi Nelson, Novak Sanitary Service; Bill Rezac, Boen & Associates; Amy O´Connor Hoback, Kleenrite Company

Sink, Swim or Get in the Boat
Michael Lynch,
Lynchpin Communication Group

Attractability, Workability, Livability & Our Local Community Development
Darrin Smith,
City of Sioux Falls

Work, Culture and Those Awkward Boss Moments
Paul TenHaken,
Click Rain

Unblock Your Creative Mind!
Michael Lynch,
Lynchpin Communication Group

Estate Planning for Business Owners & Entrepreneurs
Bobbi Thury,
Cutler Law Firm

Promoting a Healthy Lifestyle
Morgan Douthit,
Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center

Financial Planning 101
Northwestern Mutual

Are You Ready to Serve? Then Raise Your Hand!
Brooke White, South Dakota Department of Transportation; Lesa Jarding, Wells Fargo Bank; Jonna Brost, Eide Bailly LLP

Harnessing the Power of the Event Cascade
Jason Lemke,
South Dakota Area Health Education Center

How to Deliver Feedback - Without Being A Jerk
Sharon Chontos,
Sage Project Consultants

Listen & Learn
with Mayor Mike Huether

Civic Engagement: What Does That Mean Again?
Steve Erpenbach,
South Dakota State University Foundation

Climbing the Career Ladder: Where Does It Lead Me?
Margaret Sumption,
Sumption & Wyland


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