Alumni Newsletter – January 2018

Alumni Newsletter – January 2018

Alumni Newsletter – January 2018

Posted by on January 1, 2018 in

A Message From The Leadership South Dakota Directors

Four years ago, the Leadership South Dakota program started with its first class of leaders from across our great state. Through the early support of the South  Dakota Community Foundation and the Bush Foundation, seed money was generated to begin this leadership journey. Through the generous support of sponsors from across the state and over 115 alumni, Leadership South Dakota has become a recognized leadership program in South Dakota.

To position our program to receive ongoing sponsorship dollars and grant support, it was determined that Leadership South Dakota should file for non-profit status. Through the  help  of Boyce  Law  Firm and our  2015  Alumnus Paul Tschetter,  we were granted our non-profit status in  the  summer  of  2017. As  a  part  of the requirement of a non-profit, a Board of Directors was formed, and the first meeting of the Board was held in Sioux Falls on December 5, 2017. The Board of Directors are:

Office Member Organization

  • President, Mike Begeman, Sanford Health
  • Vice President, Paula Jensen, Dakota Resources (’16 alumni)
  • Secretary, Mutch Usera, Black Hills Energy
  • Treasurer, Ron Millar, Carlon & Millar
  • Member, Dana Dykhouse, First PREMIER Bank
  • Member, Ericka Heiser, Ketel Thorstenson LLP (’15 alumni)
  • Member, Paul Tschetter, Boyce Law Firm (’15 alumni)

We welcome the Board and want to extend our thanks to the South Dakota Community Foundation, the Bush Foundation and our Corporate Sponsors for their generous support of Leadership South Dakota.

Melmers & Osters
Leadership SD Director


Would you like to contribute to the Alumni Newsletter?

If you are interested in being a guest contributor to our Alumni Newsletter, please send an email to and share your idea with the staff. If you have something to share that you think would be relevant for our alumni to hear, we would love to have you  consider  sharing it with others. Please send an email our way with your idea and we will consider it for submission in our Alumni Newsletter.


Leadership SD Day at the Legislature    February 1, 2018

Network with your fellow Leadership SD alumni who are gathering at our South Dakota State Capitol. You’ll have the opportunity to visit with your elected  officials, listen in on committee discussions and the afternoon session, and feel the pulse of state government.

Leadership SD will provide a luncheon in the rotunda for alumni and legislators. This will also be an opportunity to show off this great leadership program we have in South Dakota and introduce you ~ the next generation of leaders for South Dakota ~ to those who represent our interests.

Cost is $25.00 per person (payable to Leadership SD) and includes lunch. Please wear your Leadership SD name tag and Leadership SD apparel. RSVP required by January 20th  to

Tentative Agenda

10:00am Gather in Rotunda
10:30am -12pm Committee Meetings
11:30am-1:30pm Lunch in the Rotunda
1:30pm Group Picture
2:00pm Houses Convene Alumni Introduction
3:30pm Depart for home


2018-2019 Program Schedule

The program schedule for the 2018-2019 year is finalized and provided below.

September 19 – 21, 2018 Orientation & State Government Pierre
October 17 – 19, 2018 Agriculture, Manufacturing and Ed. Brookings
November 14 – 16, 2018 Tourism, Natural Res. & Military Rapid City
January 16 – 18, 2019 Education & Rural initiatives Huron
February 13 – 15, 2019 Native American History & Culture Kyle
March 13 – 15, 2019 Health and Financial Systems Sioux Falls
April 5, 2019 Graduation and Program Wrap-up Chamberlain


Leadership South Dakota Alumni Updates and Celebrations

Kayla Eitreim (’16) and husband, Andrew, welcomed Gavin Theodore to their family on December 3! Gavin joins big brother, Connor, who is three.

Pam Lange (’15) was promoted to Executive Deputy Director with Black Hills Special Services Cooperative on January 1, 2018.

Garrett Wilson (’17) received the Distinguished Human Resource Professional of the Year award presented by the Sioux Empire Society for Human Resource Management.

Will Bushee (’16) joined the CoinLion Advisory Board in November 2017.

Kyle Wiese (’15) accepted the CEO  and General Counsel position at Black Hills Orthopedic & Spine Center, P.C., in Rapid City.

Nancy Wenande (’17) will be with NFAA Easton Yankton Archery Center until the conclusion of the World Archery Indoor Championships in February 2018, then she will shift her career over to Yankton Area Progressive Growth (YPAG) as CEO in mid-March 2018. YPAG is a private non-profit whose mission is to advance and develop the City of Yankton and immediate vicinity.

Paul Krueger (’17) is leaving his role as president and CEO of Make-A-Wish South Dakota, a position he has served in for just more than seven years, to take a position as a chapter advancement advisor with Make-A-Wish America, the national organization. Paul will be advising 16-18 chapters across the country and will be working remotely from Sioux Falls.

Paige Carda (’17): the REACH Literacy Center opened January 8, 2018. The bookstore and offices are in one location at 2101 W 41st Suite 23. At the Western Mall, next to Scheels and Kids  to College. The bookstore is open every Tuesday 10-7pm and Wednesday and Thursday from 10-4pm. They are also open the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month from 10-2pm. They accept book donations when the store is open and would love for you to stop in and see their new location.