Chairman’s Report: A Tradition of Progress

By: Ryan Boschee, 2024 Board Chair

I am honored to serve this year as the Chair of the Board for the Sioux Falls Development Foundation. Our organization has served as the catalyst for economic development efforts since the 1950s and will continue to be a valuable partner in development efforts moving forward.

As we enter 2024, Foundation Park continues to be the right decision for Sioux Falls. Conceived in 2015 as a partnership effort to lure a large manufacturing project to Sioux Falls, the Development Foundation worked with the City, the State and Forward Sioux Falls to develop the 1,000-acre industrial park. The purpose was to attract new companies and help existing companies to grow and expand, which would raise the tax base and create jobs and opportunities in the region. In 2017, we were able to attract our first tenant and the growth continued.

Today, Foundation Park generates over $6 million in property taxes annually, has contributed over $12 million in development fees and is home to over 2,500 jobs. With over 500 acres remaining to sell and with CJ Foods and Avera/Owens Minor preparing to build this summer, the growth and development continues, promising to double the jobs and continue adding tax base and fees for the community.

In addition, the Foundation continues to work with existing businesses in helping to grow their businesses; assisting 21 companies with growth and expansion plans last year. This has led to Site Selection Magazine ranking Sioux Falls #1 in the country per capita for new and expansion projects.

Workforce development has also been a key element of our efforts. Since 2018, the Development Foundation has led efforts to recruit and retain talent in the Sioux Falls region. Working with employers, universities, tech schools and local high schools, the Foundation has created a pipeline of talent for local employers and helped grow our labor and talent pool.

What our forefathers started over 60 years ago is thriving today, making Sioux Falls a growing and thriving metropolitan area now recognized nationally for responsible growth. The Development Foundation is in a good position to continue our progress and will look for new and creative ways to help the Sioux Falls region thrive. I look forward to leading the Board this year and to working with staff and community leadership to seek new solutions to our challenges.

2024 Legislative Update

By: Mitch Rave, Greater Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce Vice President of Public Policy

During the 2024 South Dakota Legislative Session, the Greater Sioux Falls Chamber advocated on several exciting issues that continue to promote the business community by advocating for economic growth, education, workforce, and so much more. Below, you can read about a handful of initiatives that were passed by the 2024 Legislative body that the Chamber was actively engaged on this session.

Economic Growth


One of the biggest wins for the Chamber this year was securing $10 million in funding for a grant program that will allow airports across the state to access dollars to improve and expand their current facilities. This is an exciting step, as the Sioux Falls Regional Airport is currently planning to expand their terminal and gate space to accommodate a continuously growing volume of flights.

There were also exciting developments regarding water and wastewater. Over $130 million in American Rescue Plan dollars were appropriated to update and expand wastewater and freshwater infrastructure across South Dakota. Thanks to this major investment, communities across South Dakota will be able to continue to accommodate the growth we are seeing both in the business community and with our increased number of residents.

Carbon Pipelines, Corn Producers, and Landowner Rights

During the session, there were over a dozen bills introduced on each side of the issue, and at the end of session three major pieces of legislation were passed and signed by Governor Noem. SB 201, HB 1185, and HB 1186. Together, these three bills create curbs and gutters around surveying regulations, landowner and county compensation for the project, and protections for private property owners as well. The goal of these pieces of legislation is to ensure that South Dakota remains open for business for large scale linear projects, especially ones that provide such a benefit to our agriculture industry, but also gives our private property owners the rights and protections they deserve. Thanks to these compromises, the agriculture industry may be able to see considerable increases in their products at market if the project goes through as planned.

Education and Workforce

A 4% increase in funding for our K-12 education system was approved for Fiscal Year 2025, along with SB 127 which provides a targeted ongoing benchmark for teacher salary increases. Together these two initiatives show continued support for both our educators and children in South Dakota.

SB 45 provides an appropriation to create a new curriculum for quantum computing at some of our South Dakota regental universities. This will allow our students to step into an emerging industry and be on the cutting edge of the next generation of computer sciences.

On the topic of the workforce, this year the legislature passed some additional licensure compacts in the healthcare industry to help garner more workforce in the long-term care space. Also, a deep dive into the issues surrounding available and affordable childcare will be addressed this legislative offseason. Legislators and stakeholders will get together to determine what steps can be taken to help alleviate this issue felt across the state and in every industry.


I want to thank all our members for being so vocal and engaged with our public policy team here at the Greater Sioux Falls Chamber during this legislative session. It is only with your continued input, engagement, and support that we can be effective advocates for the business community at every level of government.

President’s report: Riverline Development, Skilled Labor & Quality of Life Make Sioux Falls Ideal for New Corporate Model

By: Bob Mundt, President/CEO

According to the results of Area Development’s 38th annual Corporate Survey, the availability of skilled labor is still the number-one priority for corporate executives when looking to locate a new facility or expand an existing one. What has, however, increased dramatically in importance over the 38-year course of the survey is quality of life. This may be responsible for many companies choosing smaller cities with a good quality of life for their next location project rather than larger metro areas.

In fact, quality of life considerations, which are so important in attracting skilled labor, rank higher in this year’s Corporate Survey when compared to universally important factors such as labor costs and occupancy and construction costs. The focus on quality of life is likely to continue as companies reimagine their workplaces and seek to cater to a much more mobile workforce. Quality of life and “quality of place” are seen as an indicator of whether a new location will be a match for a company’s existing corporate culture and values.

The proposed Riverline District and the development of a new “City Center” anchoring downtown at that location combined with the proposal to transition the existing convention center into an indoor recreation space for children and families is truly visionary. This forward-thinking plan for the future addresses multiple factors in building that quality of life that is so important to corporate expansions and locations as well as helping to recruit more talent and skilled labor to our region.

The Sioux Falls region is ideally positioned to take advantage of these new trends as our communities do an excellent job of building quality of place while controlling other costs of development. With the creation of Foundation Park and the ability to live in the community of your choice, we are finding these new selling points to be in our favor. Keep up the great work everyone.

Enhancing Economic Growth through Strategic Talent Development in Sioux Falls

In an era of unprecedented economic growth and diversification, the Sioux Falls Development Foundation is proactively aligning its workforce and talent development strategies with the evolving needs of the region. Our deliberate focus on pivotal occupations and industry sectors represents a comprehensive approach to bolstering a dynamic and diversified marketplace.

Targeted Engagement with Key Growth Sectors

Looking forward to 2027, our strategic initiatives are concentrated on sectors experiencing significant growth within the Sioux Falls MSA. These sectors are vital for cultivating a well-rounded economic environment:

  • Business and Finance Operations
  • Computer and Mathematical Occupations
  • Educational Services
  • Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations
  • Management, Construction, and Extraction Occupations
  • Transportation and Materials Moving Occupations

It is noteworthy that roles in these areas typically offer remuneration exceeding the regional average annual wage, as indicated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for Q4 2023. This emphasizes the critical importance of these sectors in enhancing the socio-economic fabric of our community.

Initiatives Tailored to Immediate and Long-term Talent Needs

Our programming is designed to address both current and future talent requirements:

  1. Connecting Talent to Opportunity: Initiatives such as Career Connections and INTERN Sioux Falls are pivotal in linking employers with the emerging workforce, facilitating direct access to significant employment and internship opportunities in key sectors for our high school and tertiary education students.
  2. Enhancing Skills for Contemporary and Future Needs: The UPSKILL Sioux Falls program is pivotal in addressing the immediate demand for skilled labor across critical industries, including construction, healthcare, and transportation, by offering reimbursement for eligible training expenses. This initiative is essential for meeting current industry needs and elevating the workforce’s skill level.
  3. Cultivating a Future-Ready Workforce: Our Your Future STEM initiative targets students in grades 5-8, aiming to spark interest in STEM careers early. This is part of our strategic vision to prepare for long-term talent needs, especially in the expanding bio and life sciences sectors.

In April 2024, the introduction of a new Talent Development Advisory Board will strengthen the connection between employers, educational institutions, and students. This initiative is designed to align educational pathways with workplace demands, ensuring a workforce that is not only prepared for the future but also ahead of industry trends.

An Invitation to Collaborate

As we forge ahead with our talent and workforce development initiatives, we extend an invitation to you to participate in this vital journey. Your engagement and support are crucial to our collective success and the sustained economic prosperity of our community.

For organizations looking for more information about our talent and workforce programming, please reach out to Denise Guzzetta at

UPSKILL Sioux Falls: Driving Workforce Development Forward

Since its inception in 2021, UPSKILL Sioux Falls has been at the forefront of addressing workforce challenges in our community. In a strategic partnership with Southeast Technical College, this initiative rolled out specialized training programs for Class A and Class B Certified Drivers Licenses, significantly bolstering the local talent pool to meet the evolving needs of Sioux Falls businesses.

As we navigate through 2024, the results of these efforts have been nothing short of transformative. Nearly 300 drivers and managers have benefitted from this targeted training, enhancing their skills and advancing their careers. Moreover, the program’s financial incentives have been a game changer for local enterprises. Eligible businesses can receive up to 50% reimbursement for the costs associated with both internal and external training programs. “The reimbursements have enabled us to cross-train our staff more effectively, allowing us to serve our customers with greater efficiency,” commented a local small business owner.

Expanding on its success, UPSKILL Sioux Falls has broadened its horizon to encompass additional critical sectors such as healthcare, construction, and building trades in 2024. This expansion not only diversifies the skill sets within our workforce but also opens up new avenues for employee development and business growth.

Denise Guzzetta, Vice President of Talent and Workforce for the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, emphasizes the program’s strategic importance. “By supporting our employers in their efforts to retain and enhance the skills of their workforce in key areas like construction, healthcare, and transportation, we are laying a solid foundation for the sustainable growth of our local economy.”

**A Call to Action for Sioux Falls Businesses**

We encourage local businesses to leverage this unique opportunity to upskill their employees, foster a more dynamic workforce, and contribute to the economic vitality of the Sioux Falls region. Together, we can achieve remarkable milestones in workforce development and ensure a prosperous future for our community.

For more information on how to participate in UPSKILL Sioux Falls and take advantage of training reimbursements, please contact Denise Guzzetta at 605-595-4355 or

Celebrating Our Continued Excellence: SHRM Recertification Through 2026

We are thrilled to announce that the Sioux Falls Development Foundation has once again been honored with the SHRM Provider Recertification, extending our commitment to excellence in employee training through 2026. This prestigious re-endorsement from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) — the world’s largest HR member association — underscores our unwavering dedication to the advancement of human resource and workforce professionals.

Empowerment Through Education

At the heart of our mission is the belief in the transformative power of education. “Education empowers individuals and enables them to advance professionally in their careers,” states Denise Guzzetta, Vice President of Talent and Workforce. Recertification empowers our Talent and Workforce team to persist in offering valuable professional development credits crucial for the ongoing education of HR and workforce professionals.

Continuing Professional Development Opportunities

Year-round, the Sioux Falls Development Foundation is committed to facilitating opportunities for growth and learning. Through our array of webinars for virtual training and the annual WIN in Workforce Summit, we provide indispensable in-person and peer networking opportunities. These platforms not only enrich professional knowledge but also foster connections among workforce professionals keen on maintaining their continuing professional development.

Join Us at the WIN in Workforce Summit on September 24, 2024!

Mark your calendars for the WIN in Workforce Summit on September 24th. This event promises to be an enriching experience for all attendees, offering unparalleled insights into the latest trends and strategies in workforce development.

For more information and to register for the WIN in Workforce Summit, click here.

Let’s continue to grow together, embracing the opportunities that lie ahead with the support of our SHRM certification. Here’s to advancing our professional journeys with confidence and excellence!

Talent Draft Day 2024 returns on March 22

Join Us for a Landmark Event: Talent Draft Day Returns to Ignite Futures and Forge Connections!

Mark your calendars! Due to overwhelming enthusiasm and success in past years, the Sioux Falls Development Foundation is thrilled to announce the return of the Talent Draft Day on March 22, now in its groundbreaking fourth year. This signature event has become a pivotal moment for both aspiring young professionals and forward-thinking businesses in the Sioux Falls region.

What Makes Talent Draft Day Unmissable?

Talent Draft Day is not just an event; it’s a vibrant ecosystem designed to bridge the gap between the workforce of tomorrow and today’s employment opportunities. This year, we’re rolling out an even more immersive experience, tailored to spark curiosity, ignite ambition, and foster meaningful connections:

  • Hands-On Technology Demonstrations: Experience the future of work with live demonstrations by leading employers and educators. Dive into the world of skilled and professional trades through engaging role plays and interactive sessions that bring career possibilities to life.
  • Speed Networking Extravaganza: Accelerate your networking with rapid-fire sessions that connect students directly with top employers. Discover apprenticeships, internships, and career paths you never knew existed in a fast-paced and dynamic setting.

This is your golden opportunity to align with the future of your industry, share your vision with eager young minds, and potentially meet your next star employee or intern.

SD Trade Provides Valuable Services

By Mike Lynch, program director

In 2023, Forward Sioux Falls joined nearly 30 organizations, along with the State of South Dakota to provide funding for South Dakota Trade (SDT), which focuses on export education, STEP Grant hosting, international trade consulting and trade missions.

In its inaugural year, SDT has achieved several key milestones including:

  • Procuring $375k in federal grants
  • Providing continuing education to 70+ trade practitioners
  • Hosting delegates from over 10 countries
  • Providing over 400 hours of free and confidential consulting to small businesses
  • Conducting the state’s first trade mission in 10 years which generated more than a 60x return on investment (over $1.5 million in direct sales). In total, SDT has directly supported more than $3 million in sales for South Dakota companies this year

If any Forward Sioux Falls investors desire assistance with any aspect of international trade, we encourage them to utilize the services SDT provides. Click here for contact information and to learn more about SDT programming.

Business leaders join Development Foundation board of directors

The Sioux Falls Development Foundation added two business executives to the organization’s board of directors. Elected through a vote of the membership, Kurt Brost and A.J. Saigh began their terms on January 1st.

Kurt Brost, Senior Director of Community Relations, Sanford Health

Kurt Brost currently serves as the Senior Director of Community Relations for Sanford Health. He has served in various capacities within the Sanford Health system since 2008 including Director of Real Estate Services, Chief of Staff, Director of Profile Store Development, and Head of Executive Affairs. Prior to his career at Sanford, he spent a decade with Gateway Computers in sales, training, corporate communications, and program management; as assistant campaign manager with the Thune for Senate race; and five years as a Broker Associate at NAI Sioux Falls.

Born and raised in Presho and Pierre, the South Dakota native graduated from Augustana University with a BA in English and obtained an MBA through the University of Sioux Falls. Brost is married with two children. His wife Krista is a teacher in the Sioux Falls School District, his daughter is attending Augustana, and his son is a student at Lincoln High School.

A.J. Saigh, Chief Financial Officer, Burwell Enterprises

A.J. Saigh is the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Burwell Enterprises and the other affiliated companies under the Burwell umbrella. These companies include C&B Operations, LLC – 38 John Deere/powersports dealerships located in Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming; C&B Material Handling, LLC – 20 material handing dealerships located in Montana, South Dakota, Iowa, Louisiana, Alabama, Virginia, and West Virginia; ProForm Fabrication, LLC – a stainless steel fabrication and custom manufacturing company located in Minnesota and South Dakota; and Silvertree Hospitality, LLC – a hotel management company which manages two family-owned hotels in Wisconsin.

In addition to the above, A.J. helps manage the Burwell family external investments which include e-commerce, defense, health care, and real estate.

Assuming pivotal roles within the Burwell executive team, A.J. encompasses key functions such as mergers and acquisitions, treasury services, debt management, tax planning, estate planning, and the oversight of relationships with external family advisors.

Tenure with the Burwell family began in 2015, following a five-year tenure at Carlson Companies. During this period, A.J. dedicated three years to the management of financial operations for the Asia Pacific region in Singapore. Subsequently, A.J. spent two years at the Carlson Companies corporate headquarters in Minneapolis, where responsibilities included financial planning and analysis, mergers and acquisitions, dispositions, and family reporting.

A.J. started his career at Deloitte & Touche in Minneapolis with a focus on audit practices. Clients were focused primarily on financial services and family offices.

Relocating to Sioux Falls from Minneapolis in July of 2022, AJ and his wife, Melissa, have three children: Linna, Jimmy and Tony. His hobbies include driving kids back and forth between dance and hockey.

President’s Report: So What’s Next?

Bob Mundt, President/CEO

At our September and October Board retreats, we had the opportunity to share ideas with several of our community partners including our real estate brokers, city leaders, county leaders, Sioux Metro Growth Alliance, educational partners and human resource professionals from many of our key industries. These days were spent analyzing current strategies and projects including land sales, acquisition and development, identifying target markets for industry as well as strategies for retaining our current industries and talent/workforce development.

With input from our partners and analysis from staff and Board members, we have begun to assemble our action plans for the Development Foundation for the next three years. Potential opportunities include:


  • Meeting demand for smaller lots.
  • Regional options for land acquisitions and sales in neighboring communities.
  • Consideration of resource limitations when targeting and attracting companies.

Target Markets

  • Retain and expand high tech existing industry.
  • Target one corporate headquarters relocation.
  • Consider workforce limitations and critical infrastructure as it affects community growth.


  • Grow INTERN Sioux Falls programming.
  • Take Talent Draft Days to targeted campuses recruiting key high need job candidates.
  • Utilize alumni associations from high schools and regional universities to recruit talent.
  • Expand Career Connections to more regional high schools.
  • Redirect WORK Sioux Falls programming to universities and tech schools.
  • Initiate a “Come Home to Sioux Falls” campaign.
  • Focus on a skilled trades campaign.
  • Continue and expand the UPSKILL Sioux Falls programs to include CNA and skilled trades.
  • Act as a clearinghouse for contacts connecting educational institutions with businesses.

We will continue to refine these ideas into an organized workplan with implementation strategies over the next few years and work to continue our success and progress in these areas. We believe these programs will help us remain competitive and benefit our investors, our members, and our community.

Thanks for your support over this past year. We look forward to your support in 2024. Happy New Year.

Chairman’s Report: Thanks for Your Support

Steve Kolbeck, 2023 Chair

This past year has been a whirlwind for me with my first year as a State Senator, Chair of the Development Foundation and addressing all the changes taking place in the corporate world given inflation, interest rates and the focus on energy and how we produce it. I do need to thank the Foundation Board of Directors and the staff for making tough decisions and for implementing policy and programs that continue to address our challenges and move the organization forward. Aside from the fact that there’s never a dull moment, 2023 has been great and the future continues to look bright with proper planning and strategic thinking.

We were able to share our successes at the Annual Meeting held on Thursday, November 16, with many of you. Our annual report highlighted the activities and successes of the Foundation. Special kudos to Jim Soukup, our 2023 Spirit of Sioux Falls award recipient, for his outstanding contributions to the community and the Foundation.

As we reach the end of 2023, the Development Foundation has touted the success of Foundation Park to dispel the myth of “Flopdation Park” when Foundation, State and City leadership announced the Park in 2015. With over 500 acres sold to date creating over 2,300 jobs and millions in new tax base, the activity for land development and companies wanting to expand or relocate to Sioux Falls is still consistent. We have leveraged our partnerships and our relationships with the City to continue to accomplish our mission and expand our thinking. More successes will come.

Our workforce development efforts have revolutionized how we help business and the community recruit talent utilizing our relationships with educational institutions, human resource professionals and marketing to promote the Sioux falls region as “THE” place to have a career. As a community growing by 5,000+ people per year, we know our efforts are paying off. While we still have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country, we continue to do everything we can to make the Sioux Falls region their first choice.

I want to thank the Board, committee members and staff of the Development Foundation for their work in guiding the organization. Special thanks to the retiring Board members, Kurt Loudenback and Jeff Fiegen for their time on the Board and their contributions over the past six years. I also want to welcome our two new Board members, Kurt Brost and AJ Saigh, and encourage them to further engage and be active members of this Board.

I have truly enjoyed my time leading the Sioux Falls Development Foundation and thank all of our investors. We have a strong organization and I am confident we will continue to grow, problem solve and make a positive difference in our region.

Thanks for your support.


What’s Trending in Foundation Park

Foundation Park will see two new tenants in 2024. FedEx Freight acquired 43-acres in the southeast corner of the park along I-29. They’ve begun grading and will do most of the build-out of their new freight terminal in the spring and summer of 2024. Owens & Minor, a Fortune 500 company, and Avera will be moving into a 330,000 square foot multi-tenant building in the northeast part of the park. Owens & Minor designs, manufactures, and sources health care products. They’ve partnered and supplied medial products to Avera since 2012. Avera will have numerous operations at the new facility including centralized pharmacy, supply chain, bio-medical engineering, home medical distribution and courier operations.

Both projects will make a significant impact on Foundation Park regarding size and amount of overall employment. These two projects are also following a trend in Foundation Park of significantly larger parcel sizes and overall scope of project. In addition, the structure of both projects is setting a new trend in the industrial market in Sioux Falls. Both projects were completed using a national developer, meaning that the developer negotiated, purchased, and will own the site and lease the building back to the end users. The FedEx Freight project on 43-acres was acquired by Setzer Properties, a firm based in Lexington, Kentucky. The Owens & Minor/Avera project was completed by Brookwood Capital Partners, a firm based out of Raleigh, North Carolina. We are certainly seeing this model more often as Sioux Falls continues to grow, and we market Sioux Falls on a national scale.

Cascading the Impact of Forward Sioux Falls

By Mike Lynch, program director

With 36 years of helping Sioux Falls grow its economy, Forward Sioux Falls continues to build upon its success with vision, strategy and collaboration.

And while our economic development program is widely known and positively supported throughout the area by both public and private sectors, it’s important that young professionals, as well as new/returning residents and businesses relocating to our region understand this profound impact as well. It’s one of the main reasons we published a book and also solid justification for marketing program attributes.

Thanks to generous Forward Sioux Falls in-kind investors, we’ve produced a thirty-second television commercial and radio ad to cascade our objectives and intended outcomes. The first flight has been scheduled, beginning January 2024. For a sneak peek, click here to view the TV spot.

Forward Sioux Falls Video Spot

4th quarter groundbreakings 2023

The 4th quarter of the year always seems to be the busiest in terms of groundbreakings! Businesses and organizations are excited to get shovels in the ground before the snow flies, and this year was no different. The Development Foundation was honored to coordinate and host four groundbreakings in the fourth quarter, and 13 total groundbreakings for the year in 2023.

See photos and recaps of each groundbreaking that took place!

St. Vincent De Paul Thrift Store

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Sioux Falls, S.D., broke ground on their second thrift store location to serve the west side of Sioux Falls and surrounding areas. In addition to housing a retail thrift store, the 25,000 sq. ft. building will be home to a training center for the Vincentians that serve those in need.

L to R: Scott Ausland, Cathy Crisp – President of the Sioux Falls District Council for St. Vincent de Paul, Steve Kolbeck, Kim Burma, and Councilor Marshall Selberg.

Jacobson Plaza

The Jacobson Plaza will create a year-round recreation destination in downtown Sioux Falls. The project includes an outdoor refrigerated ice skating ribbon with a warming house, a large all inclusive playground, a splash pad, an off-leash dog park, a gathering hall with food and beverage options, public restrooms, formal outdoor gathering spaces, landscaping, and pedestrian connections.

L to R: Julie Iverson, T. Denny Sanford, Don Kearney, Eric Ellefson, Steve Kolbeck, Dianne Jacobson, Garry Jacobson – Lead Donor, Mayor Paul TenHaken, Pat Lloyd, Craig Lloyd, and Jeff Griffin.

Orthopedic Institute (Tea)

The Orthopedic Institute celebrated a groundbreaking for their new location in Tea. The new building will be a two-story, 70,000-square-foot clinic and office in the Bakker Landing development in Tea, south of 85th St. and west of Interstate 29.

L to R: Jay Buchholz, Bob Mundt, Lynda Barrie – CEO, Dr. David B. Jones Jr., Mayor Casey Voelker, and Scott Lawrence.

The Furniture Mission

The Furniture Mission broke ground on its new 27,000 sq. foot warehouse and office building on the Empower Campus. The new building will also have space dedicated to quilting, a woodshop, paint room, and more to allow ample space for volunteers and mentorship.

L to R: Rich Merkouris, Damon Sehr, Marcia Van Ginkle, Janean Michalov – Executive Director, Mayor Paul TenHaken, David Long, and Scott Lawrence.

Leah Blom Headshot
Want to hold a groundbreaking? Contact:

Leah Friese

Director of Marketing and Digital Media, Sioux Falls Development Foundation

2023 Spirit of Sioux Falls Honoree: Jim Soukup

The Sioux Falls Development Foundation honored Jim Soukup, President and CEO of Soukup Construction, with its ‘Spirit of Sioux Falls’ Award at their 2023 Annual Meeting on Thursday, November 16.

The award is presented to an individual who has demonstrated leadership and commitment to the economic growth and development of Sioux Falls, and honors the memory of former Development Foundation staff and board members David Birkeland, Angus Anson, and Roger Hainje, who perished along with Gov. George Mickelson and other state officials and staff in 1993 as they returned from an economic development mission.

“There is no one more deserving of this award than Jim,” Foundation board chairman Steve Kolbeck said. “There are countless examples of the ways that he’s used his knowledge and business acumen to improve our city. Whether that’s through his service to the Development Foundation or other facets of city government, he’s been a steady leader, and we are proud to honor him in this way.”

Soukup served on the Foundation’s Board of Directors from 2010-2015, and has remained a member of the Foundation’s Real Estate committee because of his institutional knowledge and sage advice. Additionally, Soukup worked with the City of Sioux Falls to secure the necessary land for its new state of the art Public Safety Campus and has been a resource to various aspects of city government.

“There’s no one at this point in time who truly embodies the Spirit of Sioux Falls like Jim Soukup,” said Dean Dziedzic, Vice President of Economic Development for the Sioux Falls Development Foundation. “He’s been a dedicated volunteer within the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, and has guided us in making strategic moves in terms of developing our industrial parks. We’ve been blessed to have him as part of our organization long after his board term has ended.”

2023 Spirit of Sioux Falls Honoree: Jim Soukup