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South Dakota’s International Trade Center Receives Presidential “E” Award For Outstanding Export Services Provided

  • November 15, 2021

This past Friday, November 5th, the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded Rock Nelson, the Executive Director of South Dakota’s International Trade Center, the 2021 President’s “E” Award for Outstanding Export Service Provider at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. The President’s “E” Award is the highest recognition that any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.

“South Dakota’s International Trade Center has demonstrated a sustained commitment to export expansion. The “E” Awards Committee was very impressed with South Dakota’s International Trade Center’s delivery of a variety of trade events over the past several years. The organization’s customized client support was also particularly notable. South Dakota’s International Trade Center’s achievements have undoubtedly contributed to national export expansion efforts that support the U.S. economy and create American jobs.” said Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce, Gina Raimondo, in her congratulatory letter announcing its selection as an award recipient.

South Dakota’s International Trade Center, located in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, is the statewide provider of export services for small and medium-sized U.S. businesses, including supply chain management, international freight logistics, export consulting, export financing, strategic planning, importing, Foreign Trade Zones, documentation, rules, regulations and compliance – both domestic and foreign and more.

Rock Nelson, its Executive Director, said that “Exporting is crucial to the success of the businesses that we work with. Every day we see the growth of our clients’ businesses, due in large part to exporting. This growth has enabled our clients to add jobs and support their local communities as they expand their bottom line.”

In total, the U.S. Department of Commerce honored 71 U.S. companies and organizations from across the country for their role in strengthening the U.S. economy by sharing American ingenuity outside of our borders. The ceremony was held to jointly recognize awardees from 2021, (32 organizations) and 2020, (39 organizations).

In 1961, President Kennedy signed an executive order reviving the World War II “E” symbol of excellence to honor and provide recognition to America’s exporters. Criteria for the award is based on four years of successive export growth and case studies which demonstrate valuable support to exporters resulting in increased exports for its clients.

U.S. companies are nominated for the “E” Awards through the U.S. Commercial Service, the export promotion arm of the of the Department’s International Trade Administration. With offices in over 100 cities across the United States and in 75 markets around the world, the International Trade Administration is the premier resource for American companies competing in the global marketplace.

For more information about the “E” Awards and the benefits of exporting, visit