Happy Thanksgiving 2019-11-26 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 22, 2019
Please join us for the next Rotary In the Know featuring a tour of the Avera Addiction Care Center!  Open to Downtown Sioux Falls Rotarians and their guests.
Rotary In The Know Angie Kuiper 2019-10-22 05:00:00Z 0
Rotarian & Architectural Visionary Jeff Hazard Passes Away Angie Kuiper 2019-09-03 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 30, 2019
Downtown Rotary hosted two of the 2019 South Dakota Hall of Fame inductees for a panel discussion on Monday, July 29th.  Fellow Rotarian Dick Brown and Clyde Fredrickson participated in a panel moderated by Past President Michelle Lavallee.  Not surprisingly, many members of the Hall are also members of Downtown Rotary and many of them were on hand to welcome these new inductees.
South Dakota Hall of Fame Inductees Angie Kuiper 2019-07-30 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 28, 2019
Rod Carlson was honored at the Annual General Meeting as the Ritz Rotarian of the Year.  The recipient should exhibit the award principles: "Emanates integrity, decency, and humility; is a servant leader; guides with dedication, outstanding leadership and tremendous motivation."  Mr. Carlson's nominators said, "Rod has been a positive force for Sioux Falls as a resident since 1973. He is married (49 years) and together have raised 3 children and 8 grandchildren. Rod served our nation with his commitment to the US Air Force (1967-71) and was awarded Bronze Star with Valor (Vietnam). In the business community, Rod worked 31 years at Midcontinent Communications/Sioux Falls Cable. In his tenure, he displayed his leadership for 25 years as a GM of Operations and 6 years in a Vice President role for Government Affairs and Community Relations. His assertiveness, professionalism and charisma were successfully channeled for lobbying efforts in South Dakota, Minnesota and North Dakota. Rod also worked as Vice President Business Development at First Premier Bank and was Sanford Health Director of Public Relations from 2007 - 2014. Rod's calm demeanor, sense of humor and tenacity to do what right continue to open doors for him and he continues to stay busy as the current Director Public Relations/Marketing at Active Generations. Staying busy has never been a problem for Rod. He has been active in the Sioux Falls community for 45 years through numerous organizations. This impressive resume is why I nominate Rod Carlson as Rotarian of the year. Rod exemplifies the Four Way Test: being true and fair, building goodwill and friendships and benefiting the community."  Congratulations Rod!
Rod Carlson Named Ritz Rotarian of the Year Angie Kuiper 2019-06-28 05:00:00Z 0
During the past couple of months, we have completed eight focus groups plus an online survey. Forty-one percent of our club participated in a focus group or survey.  We also heard from experts on each topic to help us choose our One Relevant It, a long-term project that Downtown Rotary will be known for.  We thank you for all your engagement and especially your thoughtful comments. 
Many of you mentioned that you felt both projects – cleaning up the Big Sioux and mentoring – were worthy and deserving of our attentions.  The final vote had 153 of 296 members voting and the tally was 59% choosing mentoring and 41% selecting the Big Sioux. 
So the official One Relevant It will indeed be mentoring, the details of which will be worked out beginning at the first planning session in July.  Who will we partner with?  How many groups already mentor?  We want to offer mentoring for multiple populations so we need to do this research.  Kids, recently released offenders, start-up businesses, etc. are all on the table.  Please let us know if you are willing and interested in helping to establish our approach.
Many of you may know that mentoring is a great fit in Mayor TenHaken’s One Sioux Falls. We have also spoken with the Mayor about his plans for the Big Sioux.  He feels this is definitely a long-term play and requires state officials, and other agency involvement. That said, there were such passionate comments about Rotary involvement with clean water, we feel we should form an ad hoc committee to at least study the issue and gain more information.  If anyone would like to be a part of this, please let us know.
So while this year may be spent in planning rather than doing, we think the outcomes will be well worth our efforts.  Jessie Schmidt, our incoming President on July 1, 2019 will spearhead the planning process.  Then in 2020, under Jason Herrboldt’s leadership, we will begin to execute the plan.
One Relevant It Announced Angie Kuiper 2019-06-04 05:00:00Z 0
Long-Time Rotarian Rich Cutler Passes Away Angie Kuiper 2019-05-10 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 09, 2019
The membership engagement conversations have embraced over 40% of the members voices!! Truly inspirational to hear from so many Rotarians who have a strong belief the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls should embark on one focused, transforming initiative.  Two key community drivers have surfaced:  Mentoring and the Big Sioux River.  These topics will be the focal point of the Club Assembly meeting next Monday, May 13.  This will be a Club Members only meeting to converse more deeply on the topics.  We will have a facilitated discussion, with presenters who are subject matter experts in those focus areas.  At the completion of the meeting, a survey will be sent out to members to cast their vote on their preferred One Relevant It project.  Each member will cast one vote and the voting will be open for 72 hours.  Please make every effort to attend and then vote!  This is a decision that will chart the direction of the Club for many years.
Club Assembly on Monday, May 13th Angie Kuiper 2019-05-09 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 22, 2019
February 23rd marks the 114th Birthday for Rotary International! 
Join us for birthday cake at the meeting on
Monday, February 25th to celebrate!
Happy Birthday Rotary International Angie Kuiper 2019-02-22 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 20, 2018
Did you know that in November Rotarians around the world celebrate the great work of The Rotary Foundation? As part of Foundation Month, Downtown Rotary has recognized eighteen new Paul Harris Fellows. The new fellows are:
Ryan Boschee, Eric Erickson, Mick Gibbs, J. Tyler Haahr, Paul Hanson, John Hantla, Rob Howe, Dan Kippley, Jennifer Kirby, Tim Kromminga, Andy Patterson, Matt Paulson, Cindy Peterson, Jay Powell, Jeff Pray, Loren Tschetter, Darla VanRosendale, Tom Welk
Thank you to each of these Rotarians for their contributions, along with all of the Paul Harris Fellows in our club.

What is the Rotary Foundation and why should you get involved?


The Rotary Foundation transforms your gifts into service projects that change lives both close to home and around the world.

You can give to the cause that means most to you.

Watch the Area of Focus Videos to learn more about the different initiatives that the foundation supports.


During the past 100 years, the Foundation has spent $3 billion on life-changing, sustainable projects.

With your help, we can make lives better in your community and around the world.

Our mission

The mission of The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty.

Why should I donate to The Rotary Foundation?

Your donation makes a difference to those who need our help most. More than 90 percent of donations go directly to supporting our service projects around the world.

How does The Rotary Foundation use donations?

Our 35,000 clubs carry out sustainable service projects that support our six causes. With donations like yours, we’ve wiped out 99.9 percent of all polio cases. Your donation also trains future peacemakers, supports clean water, and strengthens local economies.

What impact can one donation have?

It can save a life. A child can be protected from polio with as little as 60 cents. Our partners make your donation go even further. For every $1 Rotary commits to polio eradication, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $2.


If you are interested in supporting the Rotary Foundation, or learning more about their work, please visit: https://www.rotary.org/en/donate.

New Paul Harris Fellows Recognized During Rotary Foundation Month Angie Kuiper 2018-11-20 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 31, 2018
The Downtown Rotary Club had a historic day on Monday, October 29th. For the first time in club history, a meeting was broadcasted live on television. There was also record attendance at the meeting, where 330 people were present to witness the debate between South Dakota gubernatorial candidates Kristi Noem and Billie Sutton. The event was the only debate of this campaign that had a live audience.
KSFY-TV broadcasted the debate live on their CW station and will re-air the event on KSFY at 4:00 pm on Sunday, November 4, 2018.  You can watch the online stream of the event here.
KDLT-TV also live-streamed the debate on their website.  Their coverage can be found here.
Gubernatorial Debate Makes History for Downtown Rotary 2018-10-31 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 08, 2018
We were honored to have Governor Dennis Daugaard speak to the club about the landmark South Dakota vs. Wayfair Supreme Court case on Monday, August 6th. He discussed the implications it will have on the state and nation moving forward. He also addressed the next steps for finalizing the case and implementing the changes into law.
If you missed the meeting, you can watch Governor Daugaard's full presentation on the Facebook archive and the slides he shared are available to members on the Past Speaker Presentations Page.
Governor Daugaard on What's Next for SD vs. Wayfair Case Angie Kuiper 2018-08-08 05:00:00Z 0
Milt Husby Honored as Rotarian of the Year Angie Kuiper 2018-06-26 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 05, 2018
Dr. Amy Novak presented to the Downtown Rotary Club on Monday, June 4. The video of the presentation is available on the Facebook page archive and her accompanying slides are available for members to access on the Past Speaker Presentation page at: https://downtownsiouxfallsrotary.org/page/past-speaker-presentations
Digital DWU APK 2018-06-05 05:00:00Z 0
There is a Friendship Exchange to New South Wales, Australia in 2019.  Our District's team will be going there in October of 2019 and they will be coming here from May 26 to June 9, 2019.  We need people from the West side of our district and Sioux Falls to participate.  If this is something you would be interested in, please contact Pat Sutliff as soon as possible.
Friendship Exchange Trip to Australia Angie Kuiper 2018-05-11 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 20, 2018
Rotarians will now have access to the presentations shown during weekly meetings. In an effort to provide more content to club members, handouts or PowerPoint presentations from weekly speakers will now be archived on the website for future reference. This feature will be very useful when watching the recorded Facebook feed after the event, or if you attended the presentation, but want to refer back to the information. These will be available only to club members and you will need to log in to the website to gain access. 
The first presentation available to members is the March 19th presentation by Steve VanBuskirk on the Lake Lorainne Development. To download your copy go to the Past Speaker Presentations page under the Member Resources tab at the top of the website. Thank you to Steve for a wonderful presentation and for being the first to share materials for our new Speaker Presentation library.
Speaker Presentations Now Online APK 2018-03-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 12, 2018
Girls Scouts is the premier leadership organization for girls with over 100 years of service.  “In today's world, the need for and cultivation of female leadership is stronger and more relevant than it's ever been. And it all starts with Girl Scouts,” states Marla Meyer, CEO, Girl Scouts - Dakota Horizons.  The organization is committed to building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.  
Girl Scouts - Dakota Horizons is a non-profit organization that serves more than 12,000 members (9,000 girl scouts and 3,000 volunteers) in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa. Girl Scouts - Dakota Horizons Council area includes cities, towns, and communities covering more than 164,000 square miles and includes girls on 13 Native American Reservations and 3 Air Force Bases.  In addition, the Girl Scouts of the Dakota Horizons Council sell over $5 million dollars worth of Girl Scout cookies each year.  The organization is a 501c(3) chartered by Girl Scouts USA.
Marla Meyer, CEO, Girl Scouts - Dakota Horizons AK 2018-03-12 05:00:00Z 0
Charles Marohn, the Founder and President of Strong Towns (StrongTowns.org), discussed how to build stronger communities for the 21st century.  He provided an insightful understanding of the implications of how and why cities grow as they do.  In turn, this knowledge allows citizens and community leaders shape a more resilient, community-focused, and value-additive future for our city.  Mr. Marohn also discussed the value of urban development, and shared insights on transportation networks.

Charles Marohn, Founder and President, Strong Towns AK 2018-03-06 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 26, 2018
Dr. Casey Williams is the Director of the Avera Cancer Institute Center for Precision Oncology and the Department of Molecular and Experimental Medicine.  Today, he discussed some of the challenges in bringing new cancer medicines into the clinic, summarized some of the key areas of focus for cancer research at Avera, including genomics and early phase clinical trials, and provided an overview of some of the current trials and future directions.

Dr. Casey Williams, Precision Oncology, Avera Cancer Institute AK 2018-02-26 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 12, 2018
Conflict in the workplace or home is costly and disruptive. It can lead to lost productivity and dangerous stress.  Combining a wealth of practical knowledge with high energy and a straightforward approach to interpersonal problem-solving skills, Gary L. Mc Cann is a favorite among seminar leaders. Spanning a 32-year career before retirement as a manager with the United States Postal Service and more than 22 years of management experience in the technical and business field, Mr. Mc Cann brings more than expertise, he brings experience. His philosophy to Think Positively. Act Powerfully. Communicate Effectively. 

Gary L. Mc Cann, Gary Mc Cann Group, Handling Conflict and Communication In The Workplace And At Home  AK 2018-02-12 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 06, 2018
Dr. Michael J. Lawler discussed what children say about their lives, what children in South Dakota say about their well-being, and what the common factors that predict well-being for children around the world.  Since 2010, Dr. Lawler has been spearheading a study in which children provide a self-assessment of their own lives: What do children say about their own lives?  This is an important indicator of developmental health and well-being (Ben-Arieh, 2010; Casas et al., 2013).  Furthermore, individual and contextual factors with geographic and cultural variation contribute to children’s subjective well-being (Broberg, 2012; Dinisman & Rees, 2014; Legace-Suguin & Case, 2010).
Dr. Michael J. Lawler, Dean, USD, School of Health Sciences, Children's Worlds, What Children Say About Their Own Well-Being AK 2018-02-06 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 30, 2018
“We know the future success and well-being of our community and region in part depends on ensuring everyone has access to quality education and employment regardless of race, ethnicity or socio-economic status” states Southeast Tech’s newest President, Robert Griggs.
Southeast Tech began in 1968, and this year marks the 50th anniversary.  Over 20,000 graduates live and work in our region.  Ninety-eight percent of the graduates are employed within 6 months and 92% of them work in the their graduate field.  In addition, 6 of the college programs have a 100% state and national exam pass rate.  Southeast Tech received Noel Levitz 2017 National Retention Excellence Award.   Southeast is the first higher education institution to receive this award in the state of South Dakota.  
Dr. Robert J. Griggs, President, Southeast Tech, Meeting Workforce Needs AK 2018-01-30 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 23, 2018
Adult literacy can change everything. Health. Gender equality. Poverty. Every important social issue is impacted by low literacy. When individuals learn how to read, write, do basic math, and use computers, they have the power to lift themselves out of poverty, lower health care costs, find and keep sustainable employment, and ultimately change their lives.
Reach Literacy Center provides individual, group, and workplace literacy tutoring.  The Center is funded entirely through grants, United Way, events, donations, and special events.  There is no cost for the tutoring.  The philosophy of the organization is "Learn to Read.  Read to Learn."
Paige Carda, Executive Director, Reach Literacy AK 2018-01-23 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 08, 2018
On September 4th, 2009, Marty J. Jackley was sworn in as the 30th Attorney General for South Dakota. He serves as the chief law enforcement officer and legal adviser for the State.

As Attorney General, Mr. Jackley has a proven record of leading an office that protects families and is committed to crime prevention. South Dakota's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force proactively protects children from sexual predators, while South Dakota's Child Abduction Response Team has received national certification for its ability to respond to a missing child emergency.
He has worked with the Legislature to strengthen human trafficking laws and the sex offender registry, and to develop a prescription drug monitoring program that emphasizes prevention over prosecution. South Dakota's 24/7 Alcohol Sobriety and Monitoring Program has been extended across South Dakota and the nation. The sobriety program has reduced the likelihood for subsequent alcohol offenses and requires the offenders to pay all the program costs.
South Dakota Legislation Preview, SD Attorney General Marty Jackley AK 2018-01-08 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 18, 2017
Rock Garden Tour Radio show has been on the air in one format or another since the spring of 2000.
While other shows tell stories that seem too good to be true, Rock Garden Tour shares the kinds of stories that are too bad to be false. It is considered by some to be the most interesting show of its kind in South Dakota. It almost certainly features the most original songs about Murdo.
Rock Garden Tour Christmas Program AK 2017-12-18 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 11, 2017
Higher education has long been viewed as a gateway to opportunity and the necessary path to greater quality of life. However, Dr. Bradfield believes that changes in the enterprise and societal expectations have called into question the relative value, or lack thereof, of a college degree, especially in consideration of its return of investment. As college costs escalate and more concerns emerge regarding suffocating loan debt for students, higher education is called to demonstrate its value proposition. Higher education should be viewed as a major player in serving the greater good of societal needs and be a major contributor to workforce development that drives the national and local economy.
Navigating the Changing Landscape of Higher Education, Dr. Brett Bradfield, President, University of Sioux Falls AK 2017-12-11 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 04, 2017
The mission of Rotary International is to support its member clubs in fulfilling the Object of Rotary by fostering unity among member clubs; strengthening and expanding Rotary around the world; communicating worldwide the work of Rotary; and providing a system of international administration.   Rotary International was the first-ever service organization and it has been in existence over 100 years.  Paul Harris began the Rotary service club in Chicago, Illinois in 1905.Paul Harris created the club to build friendship among business leaders.  The early meetings rotated among their different offices, thus the rotary name.
District Governor Harrington shared that there are 1.2 million Rotarians worldwide in 120 countries.  There are 35,000 clubs and 535 districts around the world.  Regionally, Rotary District 5610 serves 41 clubs and over 1,800 Rotarians, encompassing South Dakota, Northwestern Iowa, Southwestern Minnesota, and Northeastern Nebraska. 
One Foot Local, One Foot Global, Steve Harrington, Rotary 5610 District Governor AK 2017-12-04 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 27, 2017
Organizations across the country are under increasing threat from cyber-attacks. According to FEMA, 40% of businesses never reopen after a disaster, including a severe cyber-attack, and for those that do, only 29% are still operating after two years. Organizations who lose their information technology for 9 days or more almost always end up filing for bankruptcy within a year.
Dakota State University is Rising, Dr. Jose-Marie Griffiths, President AK 2017-11-27 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 20, 2017
Human sex trafficking, or sexual exploitation, is an issue that is becoming more prevalent in all our communities. The number of victims is rising-despite the awareness of the issue, with the average age of entry into forced prostitution being only 13 years old. Because of the misinformation surrounding human sex trafficking many victims are going unidentified or misidentified, and the issue intertwines with nearly every other epidemic plaguing our communities. Drug abuse, addiction, homelessness, mental health services, domestic violence, child abuse, and many others.
Polly Dean, Founder, The New Colossus on Human Trafficking Ak 2017-11-20 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 13, 2017
Jeff Hazard is CEO and Creative Director of Koch Hazard Architects. Founded in 1961, Koch Hazard firm is a leading regional Architecture, Planning, and Interiors firm.  Mr. Hazard, a fellow Rotarian, received his Master of Architecture and Master of Business Administration degrees from the University of Illinois and worked for 10 years with KMD Architects in San Francisco prior to returning to Sioux falls in 1988. Today, Mr. Hazard spoke about the firm's conservation efforts in Downtown Sioux Falls during the past 25 years . 
Jeff Hazard, CEO, Koch Hazard Architects AK 2017-11-13 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 06, 2017

Jay Weems, Vice President of Operations for Avera eCARE discussed how Avera eCARE is making a difference in the lives of millions, impacting the cost of care and patient outcomes. Avera eCARE is telemedicine through two-way video that provides remote delivery of health care service. The mission is "to care for people where they are."

Mr. Weems discussed how technology is saving lives, decreasing costs, and improving quality outcomes within rural and urban communities.  In addition, Avera eCARE impacts Sioux Falls by job creation, supporting economic growth, and bringing national and international leaders into the community.

Jay Weems, Vice President of Operations, Avera eCARE AK 2017-11-06 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 30, 2017
Craig Severtson is founder and president of Helping Kids Round First. Mr. Severtson shared how Nicaragua, after decades of political unrest and financial difficulties, has struggled to grow its economy. As a result, it is currently the 2nd poorest country in the Western hemisphere, trailing only Haiti (nominal per capita GDP). Nicaraguan youth face many difficulties. 

“While other organizations genuinely seek to improve the lives of those they help, the true social connection needed to spark long-term, systemic change is missed,” states Mr. Severtson. He shared how the sport of baseball and softball grows trust through social interaction which has allowed the organization to broaden their mission. What started as a baseball program has expanded into an agriculture, water, education and healthcare mission.
Craig Severtson, Founder and President, Helping Kids Round First  AK 2017-10-30 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 23, 2017
Dr. Barry H. Dunn was named the 20th president of South Dakota State University (SDSU) in April 2016, the fourth alumnus chosen to lead the institution. He assumed office May 23, 2016. President Dunn discussed Imagine 2023: SDSU’s impact, academic quality, workforce development, and looking forward.
Program Highlights for October 23, 2017
Dr. Dunn stated that the goal of SDSU is to foster students who serve this community.  SDSU educates students from 50 states and over 90 countries.  The university has accreditation in over 40 programs and 10 more in progress.  Accreditation ensures that the university system maintains quality and competiveness on a national level.  It also ensures students are reaching, if not exceeding the national standards.  Furthermore, accreditation is good for employers, prospective students and their parents. 
Dr. Barry Dunn, President, South Dakota State University, "Imagine 2023" AK 2017-10-23 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 16, 2017

David Flicek has been with Avera for 24 years. He has led Avera Medical Group since its inception in 2008, and previously served as Senior Vice President of Clinic Operations at Avera McKennan. Having 30 years of health care experience, he earlier worked at Allina Health. Mr. Flicek holds a bachelor of science degree in Health Administration from The University of South Dakota.  Mr. Flicek was recently named President & CEO of Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center, and Chief Administrative Officer of Avera Medical Group.


David Flicek, President and CEO, Avera McKennan Hospital AK 2017-10-16 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 09, 2017
Trisha Thunker-Dohn, BS, MS, CWC - CEO/Owner of Well365 is a graduate of the University of South Dakota.  She received her BS in Health and Physical Education, and a MS in Exercise Science - Certified Health Coach.  Ms. Dohn is also certified as a weight manager, stress coach, and tobacco cessation facilitator.  Ms. Dohn has 15 years of experience in corporate wellness and managed care at Sanford Health Plan and DAKOTACARE.  In January 2017, Ms. Dohn opened Well365.  
Trisha Dohn, Well365, A Custom Approach to Corporate Wellness Ak 2017-10-09 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 02, 2017
David A. Pearce, PhD, is Executive Vice President of Innovation and Research for Sanford Health.  He completed his undergraduate Bachelor of Science Degree with honors in biological sciences at Wolverhampton Polytechnic in 1986.  He gained his PhD in 1990 at the University of Bath, UK, and did postdoctoral training at the University of Rochester, U.S., and Oxford University, UK.
Dr. Pearce heads the leading lab in Juvenile Batten disease research.  He has been researching Juvenile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (Batten disease) since 1997.  His research has led to the first clinical trial for Juvenile Batten disease.  He has published over 100 research papers on Batten disease. He also oversees a national registry for rare diseases known as the Coordination of Rare Diseases at Sanford (CoRDS).   He has served on numerous NIH review committees, has organized rare disease workshops for the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) arm of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and is currently a member of the executive committee for the International Rare Diseases Research Consortium (IRDiRC).
David A. Pearce, PhD, EVP Innovation and Research, Sanford Health Research "Who We Are and What We Do" AK 2017-10-02 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 25, 2017
Luke Comeau is the Executive Director of the Family Visitation Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  The Family Visitation Center provides safe, supervised visitation and exchange services to the local community and state contracted families.  In his role as executive director, he directly oversees the programmatic and operational components of the Family Visitation Center as well as implementation of strategic fundraising campaign to donors.
Luke Comeau, Family Visitation Center AK 2017-09-25 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 18, 2017
Rotary in Denmark is comprised of five rotary districts.  There are 270 clubs with 10,907 members in Denmark as of September 2017.  Verner Jensen, a Danish Rotarian from Denmark District 1440, spoke about the government, business, and culture in his country.  Denmark District 1440 is in Northern Denmark and has 2,203 members and 58 clubs.  
The government in Denmark is a Constitutional Monarchy which was created in June 1849 under King Frederik VII.  The highlights of their government include free political and religious convictions, free speech and writing, and influence by vote.  There are 179 members of their parliament.  Elections take place every four years and when a citizen turns 18, they are eligible to vote, without registering.
Rotary Denmark Friendship Exchange - Verner Jensen, Denmark Rotary District 1440 AK 2017-09-18 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 11, 2017

Shawnie Rechtenbaugh is the Deputy Secretary for the South Dakota Department of Public Safety and the State 9-1-1 Coordinator.


Shawnie was appointed deputy secretary in 2016. She works closely with Department Secretary Trevor Jones and the department’s 410 employees.  There are 11 different agencies that compose the South Dakota Department of Public Safety. A major priority for her is the development of long-term goals and strategies for the department.

Shawnie Rechtenbaugh, State 9-1-1 Coordinator and Deputy Secretary for SD Department of Public Safety  AK 2017-09-11 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 28, 2017

John W. Meyer, P.E. is a “mostly retired” professional civil engineer. His career included 22 years working for various cities in Iowa as a city engineer/public works director and 20 years working for a 25-person engineering and surveying consulting firm in Fairfield, Iowa, retiring as president of the firm in 2014. This work included helping small communities with a wide variety of projects including water supply, waste water treatment, streets, and about any other type of municipal project one can imagine. John now works part time for the city of Waverly, Iowa and with the non-governmental organization (NGO), Empower Tanzania, Inc. and the Rotary Club in Ames, Iowa on water supply projects in Tanzania.

John Meyer, PE "Working Together In Tanzania" AK 2017-08-28 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 22, 2017
Founded in 1860, Augustana is a selective, comprehensive university affiliated with the Lutheran Church. With more than 100 majors, minors and pre-professional programs for undergraduates, along with graduate degree and continuing education programs, the University is committed to enriching lives and fostering development by combining a foundation in the liberal arts with professional skill and advanced study.

Augustana serves approximately 1,900 students from 34 states and 38 countries. Most are part of the 100-acre campus residential community.

Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, President, Augustana University AK 2017-08-22 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 14, 2017

Kristi was born, raised and still lives in northeastern South Dakota with her husband, Bryon, and their three children, Kassidy, Kennedy, and Booker.

Kristi learned the value of hard work as she farmed with her dad to build an operation he could pass along to his kids one day. While Kristi was taking college classes, her father died unexpectedly in a farming accident. Kristi returned home shortly after to farm and ranch full-time. She stepped up, helped stabilize the operation, and provided leadership when it was needed most.

Kristi’s experience as a small business owner shaped her understanding of government. The way she sees it: the federal government too often gets in the way of hardworking South Dakotans trying to support their families, communities, and our country. That belief has been what's driven Kristi to try to make a difference through public service.

U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D. AK 2017-08-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 08, 2017
Neel Kashkari took office as president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis on January 1, 2016. In this role, he serves on the Federal Open Market Committee, bringing the Fed’s Ninth District’s perspective to monetary policy discussions in Washington. In addition to his responsibilities as a monetary policymaker, Kashkari oversees all operations of the bank, including supervision and regulation, and payments services. He is on the Board of the Economic Club of Minnesota and the Twin Cities PBS (TPT) President’s Council. Kashkari spoke to the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, August 7th, 2017.
Neel Kashkari, President, Federal Reserve Bank, Minneapolis, MN AK 2017-08-08 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 02, 2017
Each year ten extraordinary people are inducted into the prestigious South Dakota Hall of Fame. This year’s class is an exceptionally talented group with Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin, Jeff Scherschligt, Jeff Broin, Kelby Krabbenhoft and Ernest Carlsen from the Sioux Falls community. What does it take to become a member of the South Dakota Hall of Fame? What is the selection process? And what is the mission of the Hall of Fame? Miles Beacom, incoming Hall of Fame Board Chair provided background on this 43-year-old organization. 

Beacom moderated a panel featuring Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin, incoming President of Augustana University, and Jeff Scherschligt, CEO of Marsh and McLellan and President of Howalt+McDowell Insurance since 1985, two of this year’s inductees into the South Dakota Hall of Fame. Panelists shared their thoughts about joining the 700+ inductees in the South Dakota Hall of Fame as well as their life experiences leading to this honor.
South Dakota Hall of Fame - 2017 Inductee Highlights AFB 2017-08-02 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 27, 2017
South Dakota is uniquely positioned to be the “sweet spot” for the biotechnology industry, according to SAB Biotherapeutics Chief Science Officer, Dr. Christoph L. Bausch. Bausch presented the results of an intensive research study on the state of biotech in South Dakota when he presented to the Downtown Sioux Falls Rotary on Monday, July 24 at the Holiday Inn City Centre. 

Curious about the opportunities in biotech, Bausch conducted unique research, classifying each of the 66 South Dakota-based biotech companies into a growth phase and identified complementary companies to attract to the state to grow and support these businesses. With over 200 students currently studying in the biotech field in the core market, along with the new USD Discovery District, South Dakota is an attractive spot. And it’s great for the economy with biotech jobs typically paying 57% more than many other local professions. 

As Chief Science Officer, Bausch is responsible for antibody and antigen production, quality control laboratories, research collaborations, grant funding and clinical studies at SAB Biotherapeutics.
A Unified Strategy for Developing Biotech in South Dakota AFB 2017-07-27 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 19, 2017
W. Tom Simmons, who recently retired after a long career at Midco where he served the company as the Senior Vice President and Chief of Staff, addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls at the club’s weekly meeting, Monday July 17.

Simmons discussed key concepts from his hot-off-the-press book “How We Do Things Around Here – A 45 year discovery into the power of corporate culture.

Simmons is a nationally recognized industry spokesman appearing often before congressional committees, state and federal regulators yet his passion is people and organizations who work together in the best interest of others.  He makes the case culture can be the key and style still matters.  His key principles for business leaders include:
It’s How We Do Things Around Here: Reflections on Corporate Culture AFB 2017-07-19 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 17, 2017
Jill Franken, Public Health Director for the City of Sioux Falls and Mary Michaels, Public Health Prevention Coordinator for the Sioux Falls Health Department shared, among other topics, the recent 2017 Ambulance Contract Performance Report as well as the results of the Community Health Needs Assessment.

Franken is responsible for the overall operation and function of the Public Health Department.  Among her duties is the administration of the ambulance contract on behalf of the City.  Paramedics Plus operates within the EMS system through an exclusive franchise agreement with the City of Sioux Falls.  This agreement allows for the provision of ambulance services without a City subsidy.  The annual ambulance contract performance report is complete.  Franken will share these outcomes, including response times.

Michaels focused on the importance of adopting a community approach to health and well-being as we manage our growth, recruit and retain a qualified workforce to ensure a healthy future for our children.  “There are many ways that government, schools, businesses, churches and others can work together to focus on prevention to help people live healthier lives and to reduce the costs of chronic disease” according to Michaels.  The Live Well Sioux Falls initiative, a community-based health promotion and prevention effort works with employers and other community partners to demonstrate the “ROI” of a focus on prevention and well-being. 
Hot Topics in Public Health AFB 2017-07-17 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by David Pfeifle on Jul 01, 2017
Downtown Rotarians:
On July 4, we will celebrate the 241st birthday of our great nation.  In honor of this birthday, we will not have a Rotary Club meeting on July 3.  We will use this next week as an opportunity to reflect on our freedoms and to appreciate the principles of democratic government. 
Message from the President David Pfeifle 2017-07-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 01, 2017
Each month, the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls features a brief introduction to members of the club.
Featured Members 2017-07-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 29, 2017
Outgoing president Michelle Lavallee recapped her year in office and incoming president David Pfeifle rolled out changes and plans for the club when the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls met Monday, June 26.

The leadership transition is the centerpiece of an inspiring program celebrating the club’s achievements as one of the 20 largest Rotary clubs in North America, its relevancy and its commitment to improved member engagement and to impactful community service.

Milt Husby, the club’s senior member, was honored for his 60 years as a Rotarian and as a long-time club secretary.  Rotarian and South Dakota Hall of Fame inductee Larry Ritz, who died on April 8 at age 97, will be remembered with presentation of the inaugural Lawrence “Larry” Ritz Rotarian of the Year Award.
President Michelle Lavallee--The Year in Review  AFB 2017-06-29 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 22, 2017
Dr. Kenneth S. Snell, who has served as coroner and medical examiner for Minnehaha County since January 2011, addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, June 19.  Snell is a forensic pathologist and works for Sanford Health Pathology Clinic. 

The Minnehaha County coroner is responsible for certifying all non-natural deaths in the county and all natural deaths outside of a medical care facility.  When necessary, the coroner will order an autopsy to determine the cause of death.  As the Minnehaha County medical examiner, Snell performs autopsies, collects evidence, generates formal reports and provides court testimony in criminal proceedings.
Finding Answers about Non-Natural Death AFB 2017-06-22 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 14, 2017
J. Tyler Haahr, chairman and chief executive officer of Meta Financial Group and MetaBank, addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, June 12.

MetaBank is a federally chartered savings bank with headquarters in Sioux Falls.  Meta Financial Group, Inc., is the holding company of MetaBank and its divisions, including Meta Payment Systems. 

Meta differs from traditional banks due to the unique products and channels we’ve developed,” Haahr said.  “We are constantly looking for ways to implement our vision of financial inclusion for everyone through the products and services we offer.”
MetaBank Financial CEO Speaks  AFB 2017-06-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 11, 2017
Metro Communications Director Paul Niedringhaus provided an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the 9-1-1 emergency center in a presentation to The Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, June 5.  Niedringhaus, using a remote video feed, lead the audience on a virtual tour of the secure facility located adjacent to the Minnehaha County Jail.

Niedringhaus has overall responsibility for dispatching 9-1-1 emergency services in Sioux Falls and Minnehaha County.  He explained operations and management of the consolidated city-county public safety communications center.
9-1-1 Emergencies: Behind the Scenes AFB 2017-06-11 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 24, 2017
Four candidates for one seat on the Sioux Falls School Board faced off in an hour-long forum at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls meeting, Monday, May 22.

Randy Dobberpuhl, Dimitrios Gliarmis, Cynthia Mickelson and Carol Robinson were questioned about their qualifications and relevant experience, their interest in serving and their positions on a variety of issues involving public education and the Sioux Falls School District specifically. Retired journalist and Rotarian Jack Marsh moderated. 

The top vote-getter in the June 6th election will succeed Douglas Morrison, whose term expires June 30. There won’t be a run-off election. The five-member school board oversees the largest school district in South Dakota, with almost 25,000 students from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, about 3,300 employees and an annual budget of about $300 million. School board members are paid $75 for each day they are in service to the school board.
School Board Candidates--Panel Discussion  AFB 2017-05-24 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 18, 2017
Access to affordable legal services throughout South Dakota is decreasing at an alarming rate while increasing vulnerability and denying justice for children, adults and families who are struggling to navigate a daunting system of laws, regulations and government process, according to Taneeza Islam Rotary guest speaker.

In a presentation titled “JUSTICE – But Not for All,” Sioux Falls attorney and Bush Leadership Fellow Taneeza Islam addressed the Downtown Rotary Club of Sioux Falls on Monday, May 15.  Islam, a civil rights advocate and social entrepreneur, explained her views about the breadth of the problem, its human toll and its detriment to a civil society.

“Lack of access to legal services is a community health crisis in South Dakota,” said Islam. “South Dakota ranks in the nation’s bottom quarter for access to legal services and is one of a handful of states which does not fund civil legal aid. We must find innovative solutions to this age-old problem and increase the quality of life for every South Dakotan.” 
Justice---But Not for All afb 2017-05-18 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 10, 2017
The top executive and the volunteer board chair of the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce spoke at the Downtown Rotary Club of Sioux Falls Monday, May 8, about the organization’s recent leadership transition, the Chamber’s priorities and development of a qualified, robust workforce that meets the growing needs of business and industry.

Jason Ball became Chamber CEO and president in January, succeeding Evan Nolte, who retired after leading the region’s premier business advocacy group for 37 years. Dr. David Kapaska, CEO and regional president of Avera McKennan, is amid his one-year term as the elected chair of the Chamber’s Board of Directors. Ball was hired by the Chamber during Kapaska’s chairmanship.
Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce: Leadership transition, emerging priorities  AFB 2017-05-10 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 03, 2017
South Dakota Lt. Gov. Matt Michels discussed the challenges of operating within a balanced state budget despite lagging tax revenue when he spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, May 1.

“We adjusted the current budget, which ends 30 June, by reductions of $38 million and the upcoming budget year by $50 million,” said Michels. “The online purchases not capturing sales tax, the agricultural sector and slower consumer spending growth all contribute to the softening. We do not have any idea when the corner will be turned, but have budgeted within our means.”
Michels, South Dakota’s 38th lieutenant governor, was elected on a Republican ticket with Gov. Dennis Daugaard in 2010 and was re-elected in 2014. Michels is president of the Senate and a member of the Governor’s Executive Committee. In 2011, Matt led the state’s flood preparations in the area from Yankton to Dakota Dunes. He has been a leader in the construction of the new State Veterans Home in Hot Springs and works closely with the National Guard, Tribal Relations and Veterans Affairs. He serves on the Board of Trustees of the South Dakota Retirement System. 
LT. Governor Matt Michels: Budgeting Within Our Means  AFB 2017-05-03 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Apr 26, 2017
Perceptions, misperceptions and the truth about Native Americans were explored in a presentation to the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, April 24. Craig Howe, Oglala Lakota from Pine Ridge and executive director of the Center for American Indian Research and Native Studies, “will challenge Rotary members to become more educated regarding Native Americans and their place in South Dakota history. “ 

The Center for American Indian Research and Native Studies, founded by Howe in 2004 and operating near Martin, S.D., is an Indian-controlled nonprofit research and education center committed to advancing knowledge and understanding of American Indian communities and issues important to them. 
Better Understanding of American Indians AFB 2017-04-26 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Apr 23, 2017
Two Roman Catholic sisters at the forefront of advancing social justice and strengthening communities in South Dakota spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, April 17, about how the Presentation Sisters are achieving renewed relevancy through evolving priorities and new missions. 

The Sisters have spent years educating, tending the sick and reaching out to lift up those made poor,” said Sister Lynn Marie Welbig. “The Sisters in every era have responded to the needs of that time and that place, always forwarding gospel living and the common good. … Lately, the systems that make and keep people on the floor of society has driven the Sisters into new places of ministry.

Sister Lynn Marie Welbig discussed efforts of the Presentation Sisters to influence state legislation and public policy through lobbying in Pierre. Sister Janet Horstman talked about the Presentation Sisters’ service to South Dakota’s immigrant communities.
Presentation Sisters: Ears to the Ground AFB 2017-04-23 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Apr 11, 2017
Enrolled members of Indian Country’s sovereign nations deserve well-functioning tribal governments devoted to serving and being accountable to their people. That’s the basis behind a Bush Foundation multi-million-dollar initiative that was explained at Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, April 10.

“Our goal in the Nation Building strategy is to strengthen tribal governance and better advance the aspirations of their nations,” said Rotary program speaker Eileen Briggs of the Bush Foundation, a non-profit that invests in problem-solving, leadership, innovation and stronger communities throughout South Dakota, North Dakota and Minnesota. “We want to make tribal governments in our region models that tribes look to in how to exercise their self-determination for the good of their people.”
Sovereign Nations, Sound Governance AFB 2017-04-11 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Apr 05, 2017
Two top law enforcement officials spoke with member and guests of the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, April 3.  They lead a discussion about the impact and most effective potential responses to a methamphetamine epidemic that is fueling crime, violence and other societal problems in the Midwest and Sioux Falls.  Minnehaha County Sheriff Mike Milstead and Sioux Falls Police Capt. Loren McManus raised awareness about the gravity of the situation and are engaging community to find solutions. Milstead attributes methamphetamines and the emerging use of heroin in Minnehaha County to increased burglaries, robberies and other violent crimes, including homicides. 
Meth Epidemic & Rising Crime AFB 2017-04-05 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 28, 2017
Mike Headley, lab director for the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, S.D., discussed the lab’s scientific mission, its benefits to South Dakota’s economy and its role in STEM education when he spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, March 27. “We’re on the verge of constructing one of the largest international mega-science projects to ever be developed on U.S. soil to study the mysteries of neutrinos,” said Headley, who’s also executive director of the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority. Sanford Lab houses big physics experiments, as well as other experiments in biology, geology and engineering, nearly a mile underground in the former Homestake gold mine. He heads the 125‐member Science and Technology Authority team in the development and operation of the newest and deepest underground science laboratory in the nation. “These experiments and several others have been used to enhance STEM education for K-12 schools throughout South Dakota.” In the past year, Sanford Lab’s Education and Outreach Department has created programs and curriculum modules engaging about 13,000 students statewide. The department holds teacher workshops and hosts field trips.
BIG Science at Sanford Lab AFB 2017-03-28 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 23, 2017
South Dakota’s opioid drug epidemic, effectiveness of immunizations, impact of smoking, latest data on infant mortality and the pending overhaul of federal policy on health care and on medical insurance was discussed by the state’s health secretary when she spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, March 20. “This is an exciting time for health care policy in our state and country,” said Secretary of Health Kim Malsam-Rysdon. “There are many ideas to improve state and federal programs, and it will be key that any changes lead to better health outcomes for people in South Dakota.” In addition to being a senior advisor to Gov. Dennis Daugaard, Malsam-Rysdon chairs the Governor’s Primary Care Oversight Committee, focused on improving access to quality primary care across the state.
Assessing, improving health of South Dakotans AFB 2017-03-23 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 14, 2017
Joy Ranch, a barrier-free camp near Watertown, built entirely accessible so people of all ages and abilities can experience camp together, was discussed at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, March 13. Renee Hoover, director of sales for the year-round facility, explained featured programs including grandparent/grandchild camps, family camps, horse programs and specialty camps for people with special needs. Joy Ranch, operated by Lutherans Outdoors in South Dakota, is located on Highway 20 about 8 miles northwest of Watertown, S.D.
JOY Ranch: Barrier-free camp AFB 2017-03-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 07, 2017
Sioux Falls State Theatre, being restored as the last jewel in the crown of historic downtown, is reopened its doors for tours, a silent movie and an updated progress report for members and guests of the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, March 6.  Host was John Swedeen, volunteer board president of the non-profit State Theatre Company and retired president/CEO of StarMark Cabinetry.  The State Theatre opened to the public in 1926 as a vaudeville and movie house, welcoming visitors with 1,350 seats.
Road Trip to “The State” AFB 2017-03-07 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Mar 01, 2017
A leader in the local Islamic community, Dr. Mohammad Zeeshan Qamar, spoke about "Being Muslim in Sioux Falls" when he addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, February 27.  Dr. Qamar is a nephrologist at Sanford Health and director of interfaith dialogue at the Muslim Community Center of South Dakota. He discussed his experience as an immigrant and a Muslim in America over the past 13 - 14 years.  Dr. Qamar also talked about the challenges Muslims face and their contributions as productive members of this society, along with some of the common misconceptions people have about Muslims. 
Being Muslim in Sioux Falls - I am your neighbor, co-worker, friend. Afb 2017-03-01 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 23, 2017
The leader of a new organization dedicated to helping Sioux Falls children and youth achieve their highest educational and career potential spoke to the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, Feb. 20.  Candy Hanson, a philanthropic advocate and an expert in non-profit management, is president of Sioux Falls Thrive, a workforce development initiative of Forward Sioux Falls.  “Thrive is taking a fresh approach at managing the complexity of the educational ecosystem,” says Hanson. 
Equipping Youth to Achieve Their Full Potential AFB 2017-02-23 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 14, 2017
Junior Achievement is a decades-long program that puts thousands of successful adult role models in classrooms has improved financial literary and encouraged strong ethical behavior among countless young South Dakotans.  “Research shows that JA alumni are more successful than their peers, and JA of South Dakota is fortunate to impact more than 51,000 students each year,” Kayla Eitreim shared: “For nearly 50 years, we’ve connected them with a community volunteer who utilizes hands-on activities to teach about money, careers, ethics, and owning a business.” Eitreim shared data at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls meeting, showing JA’s impact today versus the past and JA’s impact in Sioux Falls in comparison with other regions.
Junior Achievement “Empowering Young People to Succeed”  AFB 2017-02-14 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 07, 2017
Leaders in education, business, government and non-profits are collaborating to expand and improve the region’s workforce by training, mentoring, recruiting and placing qualified candidates for an abundance of unfilled jobs in the Sioux Falls market. Lon Clemensen, the person handling several initiatives on behalf of the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, Feb. 6. Clemensen, vice president of workforce development, discussed an elaborate new “one-stop” website for prospective applicants, plans for a “Back to SoDak” three-day event next summer to recruit former residents and outreach to unemployed or underemployed people in specific targeted groups. Those include reformed criminal offenders, the disabled, immigrants and refugees, retirees, at-risk youth, the homeless and veterans.
Matching good workers, abundant jobs  AFB 2017-02-07 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 31, 2017
First off, thank you for affording Dianne and I the opportunity to attend the Large Club Conference (LCC) in Nashville! 
Team Building/Leadership: Awareness, Insight, Action was the theme of this of this year's LCC where 48 large clubs from around North America attended.  Keynote speakers were Julia Reed, writer on food, politics and the South, Joe Calloway, Author, Consultant/Advisor and Nashville Mayor Megan Berry.
Rotary Large Club Conference - Nashville AFB 2017-01-31 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 31, 2017
Olga Reuvekamp, who together with her family operates Hilltop Dairy near Elkton, S.D., shared her story about emigrating from the Netherlands in 2006 and discussed issues facing fellow immigrants in the region when she spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, January 30.  In their business, she and her husband Wilifried employ a diverse workforce to milk 2,000 cows, raise heifers and grow crops to feed the herd.  Reuvekamp also is executive director of Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership, administering that state’s leadership program for people in the agriculture industry and those living in rural communities.
I'm an Alien/Immigration in America AFB 2017-01-31 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 17, 2017

South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard discussed the “State of the State” in a presentation to the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, January 16. Daugaard, a Republican who is beginning the third year of his final term as South Dakota’s chief executive, elaborated on his proposed state budget and his agenda for the legislature’s current session in Pierre.

Governor Dennis Daugaard--STATE of the STATE Address AFB 2017-01-17 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 15, 2017

The Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls went on the road Monday, January 9, to the Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science, to hear a presentation about the South Dakota foster care system.  Amanda Barton, committed to improving the lives of foster children and break the cycle of abuse and neglect, is founding director of Royal Family KIDS Camp/Sioux Empire.  Barton, mother of four sons, fitness instructor and active community volunteer, was awakened to the needs of the foster care community when she and her husband became foster parents in 2011.

Improving Lives of South Dakota's Foster Children AFB 2017-01-15 06:00:00Z 0
2016 Centennial Fund Drive Report Joel Dykstra 2017-01-01 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 15, 2016

South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley will discuss the impact, ramifications and status of Marsy's Law and Initiated Measure 22, controversial ballot issues recently approved by state voters, when he addresses Sioux Falls Downtown Rotary, Monday, Dec. 12. Marsy's Law, which protects crime victims' rights with an amendment to the state constitution, restricts the release of information that could be used to locate and harass them and their families. Initiated Measure 22, promoted as an anti-corruption referendum, regulates lobbyists and public officials, establishes a state ethics commission and creates “a publicly funded campaign finance program.” Both issues won statewide approval in the general election. on Nov. 8.

Marty Jackley, SD Attorney General—Marsy’s Law & IM 22: NOW WHAT? AFB 2016-12-15 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 07, 2016

Co-directors of an after-school music program dedicated to transforming lives of socially and economically challenged children in Sioux Falls spoke about the goals and impact of the non-profit organization at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls meeting, Monday, December 5. Composer/conductor Dan Goeller and music performer/educator Heidi Goeller founded Harmony South Dakota nearly three years ago.  In support of their mission, Rotary presented a $12,000 grant to Harmony South Dakota to help underwrite the cost of concerts and the purchase of instruments.

Social Change Through MUSIC AFB 2016-12-07 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 04, 2016

Dr. Vance Thompson, an internationally recognized specialist in refractive and cataract surgery, will discuss his career in ophthalmology and related research when he addresses Downtown Rotary, Monday, Nov. 28. Thompson and his team have conducted more than 100,000 eye procedures in the past 25 years and have been involved in about 80 FDA-monitored clinical trials involving the latest advancements in eye surgery techniques and the use of highly-specialized laser technology.

Visionary Surgeon, Vance Thompson AFB 2016-12-04 06:00:00Z 0
Rotary Youth Exchange Students Visit Sioux Falls AFB 2016-12-01 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 24, 2016

Chris Semrau, who is responsible for booking all touring events at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, November 21. He discussed the process for securing events and shared his insights about the volatile entertainment touring industry. As the assistant general manager, Semrau oversees various departments including event services, ticketing, marketing, public relations and premium seating.

Booking the Premier Center/A look into programming SD’s premier venue AFB 2016-11-24 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 14, 2016

Principal Tracy Vik and a few of her 599 students enrolled in the highly-acclaimed Sioux Falls K-5 Spanish immersion school presented at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, November 14. They explained a typical day at the Sioux Falls School District’s newest school, Sonia Sotomayor Elementary, named for the first US Supreme Court justice with Hispanic heritage. The presentation explored the nine-year history of the innovative program, plus the benefits and relevancy of bilingual education to equip children to live and thrive in a multicultural society.

Just What Exactly is Spanish Immersion? AFB 2016-11-14 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 08, 2016

Democrat Billie Sutton and Republican Mark Mickelson in the South Dakota state legislature argued for voter support of their respective party tickets in a moderated discussion at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls meeting Monday, November 7, the day before the general election.

Dem, GOP leaders make their best cases AFB 2016-11-08 06:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 01, 2016

Former USA TODAY media columnist and editor-at-large Rem Rieder, who’s been a prominent watchdog over American journalism for the past 25 years, spoke about the media’s role, responsibility and controversial performance in covering the 2016 presidential election when he addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, Oct. 31.  Rieder has devoted much of his distinguished career to scrutinizing the media and advocating for integrity in journalism.

Rem Rieder, Editor USA Today—Press Under Fire: Media’s Worst and Best in Election ‘16 AFB 2016-11-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 01, 2016
Mayor Mike Huether, joined by Presidents, Rotarians and distinguished guests, declared Monday, Oct. 24 as World Polio Day in Sioux Falls. 
World Polio Day October 24, 2016 2016-11-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 25, 2016
Rotary, Midco present a C-SPAN telecast

Republican incumbent John Thune and Democratic challenger Jay Williams, candidates for a U.S. Senate seat from South Dakota, faced off in a nationally-televised exchange produced by the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls and Midco, Monday, October 24. C-SPAN carried a delayed broadcast of the hour-long issues debate, which was moderated by veteran journalist Jack Marsh.
Thune vs. Williams, Senate candidate debate AFB 2016-10-25 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 18, 2016

Ed Jacobson of Pierre, District Governor for Rotary District 5610, shared his assessment of and vision for the 43 clubs in the four-state region when he made his official annual visit to the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, October 17. His presentation focused on the things that make Rotary unique, how and why Rotary’s 4-Way Test was written and the Rotary Foundation’s 100-year history.

Rotary Points of Pride AFB 2016-10-18 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 12, 2016

Democrat Paula Hawks and Republican incumbent Kristi Noem, the two major party candidates for South Dakota’s lone seat in the US House of Representatives, faced off in a forum and debate during an extended meeting of the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, October 10.

“US House candidate forum: Hawks vs. Noem” AFB 2016-10-12 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 03, 2016

Veteran South Dakota editor Maricarrol Kueter, joined professional journalists Jonathan Ellis of Argus Leader Media, Stephanie Rissler of South Dakota Public Broadcasting and Beth Fuller Jensen of KELOland News, at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, October 3 meeting, and examined what’s at stake with 10 ballot issues that will be decided by the state’s voters on November 8. Presentations covered: Explanations of state constitutional amendments, initiated measures and referred laws; origin and background of each; effect and impact; pros and cons.

Understanding SD’s 10 Ballot Questions AFB 2016-10-03 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 01, 2016
On September 28 our own Mike Costanzo emceed the groundbreaking of the Arc of Dreams, the five-story stainless steel sculpture, designed by sculptor and South Dakota Artist Laureate Dale Lamphere.
Arc of Dreams Groundbreaking Michelle Lavallee 2016-10-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 28, 2016
The Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls took a short road trip to The Bakery, 910 N. Main Ave., on Monday, Sept. 26, for a first-hand look at this business incubator for collaboration, ideas and innovation, and for a discussion about the “Rise of Young Entrepreneurs.” Rotarian Brian Rand, a co-founder of The Bakery, hosted and moderated a panel featuring Addie Graham-Kramer of The Event Company, Aaron Hultgren of Legacy Developments, and Matthew Paulson of MarketBeat.com.
Rise of Young Entrepreneurs AFB 2016-09-28 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 20, 2016
Superintendent and Downtown Rotarian Dr. Brian Maher discussed his first-year report card on the performance and shared vision for the future of the Sioux Falls School District when he addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, Sept. 19.  Maher, who recently began his second school year as superintendent, oversees South Dakota’s largest district, with over 24,000 students in K-12.  “The Sioux Falls School District’s commitment is to grow college- and career-ready graduates with the highest critical thinking skills, experience in collaborative working groups, and belief that they can successfully reach both traditional and entrepreneurial aspirations right here in this great city we all call home.
Superintendent's first-year report card AFB 2016-09-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 13, 2016

The CFOs of NorthWestern Energy and Daktronics will discuss the challenges and benefits of operating as publicly-traded companies in South Dakota when they address Sioux Falls Downtown Rotary on Monday, Sept. 12. Sheila Anderson of Daktronics and Brian Bird of NorthWestern represent two of only eight publicly-traded companies based in the state.

SD's publicly-traded companies: CFOs Perspectives AFB 2016-09-13 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Sep 01, 2016

With only three weeks left until City Council votes on a 2017 budget, the veteran Sioux Falls public works director will addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, Aug. 29, about his department’s priorities for streets, water, wastewater and other municipal systems and infrastructure. “Public Works is responsible to manage the transportation and utility systems for the 76 square miles of our great city,” said Mark Cotter. “Public Works plays an active role in your daily lives from your regular commute to the cold glass of water that flows from your faucet. More than 52,000 water and wastewater customers depend on us for life’s basic services.” Mayor Mike Huether’s 2017-2021 capital plan would commit $589.2 million over the next five years for the city infrastructure, facilities, equipment, and other improvements. The plan involves projects tied to Public Works and 11other city departments.  Only the first year of the capital plan is incorporated into the 2017 budget, which will be considered September 20th by the city councilr the next five years for the city’s infrastructure, facilities, equipment, and other improvements. The plan involves projects tied to Public Works and 11 other city departments. Only the first year of the capital plan is incorporated into the 2017 budget, which will be considered Sept. 20 by the City Council. The Aug. 29th Rotary meeting at the Holiday Inn City Centre is open to all Rotarians, their guests and the media. Lunch costs $11; the buffet.r the next five years for the city’s infrastructure, facilities, equipment, and other improvements. The plan involves projects tied to Public Works and 11 other city departments. Only the first year of the capital plan is incorporated into the 2017 budget, which will be considered Sept. 20 by the City Council. r the next five years for the city’s infrastructure, facilities, equipment, and other improvements. The plan involves projects tied to Public Works and 11 other city departments. Only the first year of the capital plan is incorporated into the 2017 budget, which will be considered Sept. 20 by the City Council.

Streets, Sewers, Water: Bigger City, Growing Needs AFB 2016-09-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 23, 2016

Faced with a ratio of one school nurse for about every 1,000 students, the Sioux Falls School District is partnering with Avera McKennan to develop an eCare initiative in select schools. Molly Satter, health services supervisor for the school district, addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, Aug. 22, about the importance of the pilot project... for the state’s largest district, with about 24,000 students and more than 30 schools. The eCare School Nurse program increases school nurse access for students who need medical care during the school day. With clerical support, student health needs can be assessed by a school nurse via computer when the assigned school nurse is not available on site.

Expanding School Nurse Access with eCare AFB 2016-08-23 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 16, 2016

Drawing on 38 years of professional experience with youth and young adults, Brian Roegiers spoke to member of the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, Aug. 15, about juvenile justice in South Dakota and how McCrossan Boys Ranch offers “New Hope for a Better Life” to troubled boys, ages 9 to 20. Roegiers, who noted underprivileged youth have “a special place in my heart,” has been executive director of McCrossan since 1998. “By working on values, goals, education and life skills, we prepare our boys to live a balanced life outside the ranch,” says Roegiers. The private non-profit McCrossan Boys Ranch, situated near the northwest edge of Sioux Falls, serves boys who have experienced conflict in their lives and provides “one-on-one counseling as well as specialized educational services so they can heal and grow intellectually.

McCrossan Boys Ranch Today & Tomorrow AFB 2016-08-16 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 09, 2016
Species of wildlife are facing global extinction on a massive scale, with about 21% of mammal species, about 12% of bird species and about 33% of all amphibian species under threat. So says Elizabeth Whealy, president and CEO of the Great Plains Zoo, who believes zoos are in a unique position to make a difference. Whealy addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, Aug. 8, and discussed how the Great Plains Zoo is banding together with other zoos in an aggressive mission to save endangered species through conservation breeding, habitat preservation, community development, public education and research.
Zoos on a Mission, Saving Species from Extinction AFB 2016-08-09 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 02, 2016
Prolific author, economic historian and professor Dr. Robert E. Wright addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, Aug. 1, about the history of entrepreneurship in South Dakota in a presentation titled “The Next Big Thing.”  Wright, the chair of Political Economy at Augustana University, shared insights from his most recent book, "Little Business on the Prairie: Entrepreneurship, Prosperity, and Challenge in South Dakota."  The book reviews the state’s economic history through the lenses of its public policies, politics and institutions.
“The Next BIG Thing”: Entrepreneurship in S.D. AFB 2016-08-02 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 01, 2016
The Board of Directors and the Classification Committee has approved the following.  Objections should be submitted in writing within seven (7) days.
Membership into the club is subject to review by the Classification Committee and approved by the Board.  PLEASE introduce your guest as guests ONLY and not a potential new member until such approval has been authorized.
Proposed New Members 2016-08-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 31, 2016
After a 27 day trip across 22 states Teo stopped in to share his experiences and thanks with Rotarians on July 18. On the stage, he explored with Rotarians how this
journey changed him for the better and allowed him to grow in so many ways!
Teo's Final Thank you! AFB 2016-07-31 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 25, 2016
A community advocate for inclusion and diversity addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, Monday, July 25, about improving job satisfaction and productivity by creating a healthier, more respectful people-focused business culture. “Respect, Empathy & Leadership: Transforming the Workplace” is the title of Vaney Hariri’s presentation, which explored key points from a self-published book he co-authored earlier this year, “Think 3D: Personal, Professional, Potential.” Hariri, 35, a native of Buffalo, N.Y., who moved to Sioux Falls at age 12, is former chair of the Sioux Falls Human Relations Commission, a sales team leader for student loans and nine-year employee at Wells Fargo and co-founder of a business consulting firm focused on workplace culture and leadership.
Respect, Empathy, Leadership: Transforming the Workplace 2016-07-25 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 19, 2016
While matters involving the U.S. Navy are drawing domestic and international attention with news coverage from the South China Sea and Okinawa to San Diego and Washington, D.C., Rear Admiral Bret Muilenburg addressed the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, July 18, about the “State of America’s Navy."  Admiral Muilenburg gave an overview of the global mission undertaken by 540,000 active duty and civilian personnel, discussed the status of 276 deployable ships and 3,700 aircraft and shared his views about the importance of a strong Navy to land-locked South Dakota.
STATE of the NAVY afb 2016-07-19 05:00:00Z 0
SD Supreme Court Judge Says Look At Poverty To Understand Incarceration Rates AFB 2016-07-17 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jul 12, 2016
South Dakota Supreme Court Justices Lori S. Wilbur and Glen A. Severson discussed the inner workings of the state’s highest court in a joint presentation to the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, July 11. Wilbur and Severson, two of the five jurists on the appellate bench, explored “A Few Things You May Not Know About the Supreme Court.”
SD Supremes: Courtside insights 2016-07-12 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 30, 2016
Eleven Rotary Exchange Students gathered at Summit Events Hall in Sioux Falls, June 11-13, for a weekend of sharing, fellowship, team-building, service and leadership training.
The students were greeted by District 5610 Governor Steve Sikorski who shared the importance of the journey which will provide an opportunity for understanding and in turn develop peace, one relationship at a time.
Teambuilding activities and leadership training included the circle of trust, Simon Sinek’s lesson “Your WHY”, go carts, Roman Catholic Service at St. Joseph Cathedral, Festival of Cultures, Cold Stone Creamery Ice Cream and a tour of the city!
All this fun was balanced with “Service above Self”.  On Saturday the students volunteered at Bishop Dudley Hospitality House (BDHH); cleaning rooms, picking up garbage and learning about the important service BDHH provides.
Rotary Hosts International Youth Exchange Retreat AFB 2016-06-30 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 28, 2016
South Dakota Representative Mark Mickelson, R-13, assessed the 2016 legislative session and discussed major state issues including the recent teacher-pay initiative and the expansion of Medicaid when he spoke at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls meeting on Monday, June 27.
Mark Mickelson: State Issues at Hand AFB 2016-06-28 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 21, 2016
Two well-known South Dakota lobbyists and a former state lawmaker addressed the relevancy and conduct of hired advocates in the legislative process during a presentation at the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls Monday, June 20. David Owen and Steve Willard are registered lobbyists. Tim Rave, a former Senate majority leader and former speaker of the House, now hires lobbyists. Owen is president of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Willard is executive director of the South Dakota Electric Utility Companies Association, president of the South Dakota Broadcasters Association and a contract lobbyist. Rave is vice president of public policy at Sanford Health.
SD Lobbyists: Key players in Pierre AFB 2016-06-21 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 14, 2016
South Dakota Secretary of State Shantel Krebs, whose official responsibilities include the oversight and integrity of public elections, spoke at Downtown Rotary Club of Sioux Falls, Monday, June 13. The South Dakota native and former small business owner was elected to her current post in November 2014. She succeeded fellow Republican Jason Gant, who decided not to seek a second term after criticism of his election handling.
Secretary of State: S.D.’s chief election officer AFB 2016-06-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 07, 2016
Sioux Falls resident Mary Mortenson, executive director of Prison Congregations of America, addressed Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls on Monday, June 6, about the impact the national ministry is having on those incarcerated at 29 prisons in 13 states. Her presentation, titled “Changing the World From the Inside Out,” explored the mission of the South Dakota non-profit organization to collaborate with Christian denominations and prison officials to establish congregations behind the walls at state penal institutions across the US.
Prison Ministry: Changing the World from the Inside Out 2016-06-07 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jun 01, 2016
Foundation recognition points are awarded to donors (clubs or individual Rotarians) who contribute to The Rotary Foundation through the Annual Programs Fund or PolioPlus, or as a sponsor portion to a Foundation grant.
Foundation Recognition Points AFB 2016-06-01 05:00:00Z 0
Paul Harris Society: Web sign-up now available. We have a new webpage for the Paul Harris Society, complete with a sign-up form. The Paul Harris Society recognizes Rotary Members and friends of the Rotary Foundation who contribute $1,000 or more each year to the Annual Fund, PolioPlus, or approved global grants. The purpose of the Paul Harris Society is to honor and thank donors for their generous annual support of the Rotary Foundation.
Paul Harris Fellow Campaign Update 2016-06-01 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 24, 2016
Plans were unveiled Monday, May 23, for a downtown river plaza commemorating the 100th anniversary of Rotary in Sioux Falls.  Landscape architecture expert Jon Jacobson and Sioux Falls city planning director Mike Cooper showed renderings and presented details about "Rotary Centennial Plaza," to be developed along the Big Sioux River Greenway, near the intersection of 10th Street and River Boulevard. Pending a vote by Sioux Falls City Council, the plaza will be named for Rotary. The plaza will be developed this summer as a public seating area and river overlook.
Rotary Centennial Plaza 2016-05-24 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 21, 2016
Paula Jensen, resource and community development director with Dakota Resources, based in Renner, S.D., addressed “Why Rural South Dakota is Important to Sioux Falls” when she spoke at Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls, on Monday, May 16. Jensen’s presentation explored cultural and economic interconnectedness and interdependence of regional trade centers and their rural neighbors in South Dakota. Dakota Resources is a 501(c)(3) community development financial institution dedicated to stimulating financial and human investment in rural communities.
Why Rural South Dakota is Important to Sioux Falls 2016-05-21 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 10, 2016
US Representative Kristi Noem, R-S.D., spoke to the members of the Downtown Rotary Club of Sioux Falls Monday, May 9th.  Congresswoman Noem, South Dakota’s lone member in the US House of Representatives, provided an update on activities she has been involved with.  Representative Noem is in the final year of her third term.
Congresswoman Kristi Noem—Congressional Update 2016-05-10 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on May 04, 2016

Business and civic leaders Dave Rozenboom and Mark Shlanta, co-chairs of Forward Sioux Falls 2021, addressed the Downtown Rotary Club of Sioux Falls, Monday, May 2, on the topic “The MOMENTUM of Forward Sioux Falls.” They reviewed Forward Sioux Falls accomplishments, gave an update on the current $15.5 million campaign and presented an overview of program priorities for the next five years.

The MOMENTUM of Forward Sioux Falls 2021 2016-05-04 05:00:00Z 0