State Employee Awards

2008 Awards

2008 Awards

Agency/Employee(s)

Awards and Honors

Department of Revenue and Regulation
Executive Secretary Larry Eliason
Gaming Commission Executive Secretary Larry Eliason has been named Chairman of the Model Rules Committee of Racing Commissioners International. The Model Rules Committee meets periodically to develop model regulations governing horse and greyhound racing, track operation, licensing, tote company standards, pari-mutuel wagering and security, off-track betting and advanced deposit wagering. With Larry’s more than 25 years of experience as a racing regulator, he is a great choice for the position
Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Sol Brich
The Rotary Foundation’s Group Study Exchange (GSE) program is a unique cultural and vocational exchange opportunity for business people and professionals between the ages of 25 and 40 who are in the early stages of their careers. Sol Brich was awarded a Rotary Group Study Exchange with Brazil.
Bureau of Information and Technology SDPB won six regional Edward R. Morrow Awards given out by the RTNDA. They won overall excellence for the second year in a row!
Department of Health
Chris Carlson
Chris Carlson, Senior Microbiologist in the Public Health Laboratory, has been asked to be an instructor for the Epi Ready courses that are sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Environmental Health Association. NEHA is building a roster of people across the country that are able to teach 1 or 2 courses per year, starting in 2009. It is definitely an honor to be chosen as an instructor for this course and certainly reflects well on the caliber of our laboratory staff.
Department of Revenue and Regulation The Division of Insurance received an excellent score from the NAIC audit for financial solvency review and was awarded re-accreditation for another five years from the NAIC. This is an important certification for the division and for its domestic insurers as they will continue to benefit through reciprocity with other accredited states that they write business in.
Department of Corrections
  • Penitentiary Unit Manager Troy Ponto (right) received the Law Enforcement recognition award from the Sioux Falls Optimist Club in May.
  • Officer Tom Heilman from the Yankton Minimum Unit received the Officer of the Year Award from the Yankton Lions Club in May.
  • Dennis Wheeler, Mobridge JCA, received the Annual Team Member Award at the Juvenile Community Corrections training session in Pierre May 7th.
  • Linda Bias, Rapid City JCA, received a Youth Service award from Behavior Management Systems May 27th for her work with juvenile offenders and their families
Department of Corrections The South Dakota State Penitentiary has been nominated for the most prestigious employer support award from the National Guard. The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award is the highest recognition given to an employer for their support of their employees who also serve in the National Guard and Reserve. Nominations must come from a Guard or Reserve member who is employed by the organization they are nominating.
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
  • Three Airmen of the 114th Logistics Squadron, South Dakota Air National Guard, are among the nation's first to receive the recently authorized Air Force Combat Action Medal.
    • A medal presentation ceremony honoring Master Sergeant Dana S. Storm, Crooks, SD, and Staff Sergeant Luke A. Cunningham, Vermillion, SD, was held at 1 p.m. on Sunday, March 2, at Joe Foss Field in Sioux Falls.
    • A third medal for the late Tech. Sergeant Keith J. Fuerst, Parkston, SD, was presented posthumously to his family. Fuerst lost his life in a civilian motor-vehicle accident in December 2006.
  • First Sergeant Diann Deyo, management analyst for the South Dakota National Guard Surface Maintenance Office, was awarded Service Technician of the Year on May 16, 2008, for her displayed excellence in job performance.
  • Second Lieutenant Patrick J. Schnieder of the Air Guard's 114th Maintenance Squadron received the prestigious Lt. Col. John J. Steele Award on April 25-26, 2008. Schnieder is currently the maintenance officer for the Equipment Maintenance Flight where he is responsible for munitions storage, aerospace ground equipment, non-destructive inspection, fabrication and phase maintenance.
  • Chief Warrant Officer Brett Anderson was awarded the CW4 Michael F. O'Conner Award on April 25-26, 2008. Anderson joined the National Guard during his senior year at Riggs High School in Pierre in 1989. Two years later, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps and served as an artilleryman with the 1st Battalion, Second Marine Division. During his four-year tour, Anderson served in support of Operation Restore Hope in Somalia in 1993. Returning in 1995, he rejoined the 147th Field Artillery Brigade, South Dakota Army National Guard, and began working full-time for the Guard in 1997. Anderson is currently serving as the property management officer for the United States Property and Fiscal Office at Camp Rapid
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Risking his life to help save his neighbor’s house that caught on fire last summer, Staff Sergeant Troy Spear, Black Hawk, was awarded the South Dakota Ribbon of Valor during a ceremony on June 10 at the Range Road Armory.
Bureau of Information and Technology SDPB’s Charles Michael Ray received a national Edward R. Morrow Award in Hard News Feature category—his second one in the last four years.
Department of Game, Fish, and Parks George Vandel received the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife President’s Award for his many years of dedicated service, leadership, and vision for fish and wildlife across South Dakota and western states.
Department of Game, Fish, and Parks Eileen Stukel Dowd received The Wildlife Society’s Jim McDonough Award. The award is presented annually to a certified wildlife biologist who has made solid contributions to the wildlife profession without major recognition. Eileen was chosen for the award based on her work with the Teaming with Wildlife initiative, other grant programs, work on action plans for endangered species, bird conservation and bat management, and work on a number of books, trail guides and technical reports. The award will be presented to Eileen when The Wildlife Society has their annual meeting in Miami, FL, in November.
Department of Game, Fish, and Parks Hughes County Conservation Officer John Murphy was selected as the 2007 Boating Safety Officer of the Year.  This award is presented on behalf of the National Association of Boating Law Administrators and the National Association of Boating Administrator.
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Tammy Chase, Sisseton, received the prestigious AMVETS PNC John S. Lorec National Guard Volunteer of the Year award at the National Guard Family Program conference in St. Louis, Missouri, on July 23.  This national award recognizes volunteers for exceptional service to military and family members and to their community.  Chase was also awarded $1,000 for her unit's family readiness group.
Bureau of Administration South Dakota State Federal Surplus Property Manager Daryl Haeder has been honored by his piers at the National Association of State Agencies for Surplus Property (NASASP) with the first annual Daryl Haeder Lifetime Achievement Award.  The award, named in Mr. Haeder’s honor, is presented to any member of a state agency for surplus property who embodies the principles that are guided by honor, honesty, and integrity in order that those agencies may merit the respect and confidence of associates and the public they serve.
Department of Health Joan Frerichs will receive the March of Dimes Nurse of the Year Award later this month during the 33rd Annual South Dakota Perinatal Association Conference in Pierre. Joan is a Grant County Community Health Nurse in Milbank.
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Cited for their strong dedication to serving veterans and their families, three county/tribal veteran service officers (C/TVSO) and one support staff member were recognized at an awards program held Monday night, Aug. 25, at the Pierre American Legion Cabin.
  • Loy Carda, of Lemmon, received the 'Jim Melgaard Award' that distinguishes him as the 2008 County/Tribal Veteran Service Officer of the Year. As the VSO for Perkins County, Carda was responsible in purchasing a van for the Disabled American Veterans and assisted with driving and scheduling its use. He developed a program to provide veterans with medical equipment at no cost; provides excellent outreach and public information to his local veterans and their families; assists local veterans in the applying for various benefits programs; and has a positive approach in finding solutions to difficult issues.
  • Bobby G. Miller, of Plankinton, was awarded the 2008 Excellence in Outreach, 'Robert Lindblad Award.' Representing Aurora and Brule counties, Miller is involved in organizing all types of veterans' forums. He has played a key role in assisting local veterans in obtaining their medals and awards. On a monthly basis, Miller transports clothing, furniture and other items to the Michael J. Fitzmaurice State Veterans Home. He also makes special trips to the Veterans Home at Christmas or if a veteran needs transportation for enrollment in the Home.
  • Eric Johnson, of Pierre, was selected for the 2008 Excellence in Veterans Education, 'Les Mord Award.'  Johnson was cited for his excellence in promoting training programs in his tri-county area that includes Stanley, Hughes, and Sully Counties. He has taken the 'extra step' to ensure that those eligible for VA educational benefits are aware of the many educational and vocational opportunities that are available to them.
Faye Johnston, of Sisseton, received the 2008 Support Staff of the Year Award.  She was recognized for her dedication and caring approach in helping Roberts County veterans and their families.

Also highlighted at the ceremony, were three county and one tribal veteran service officers who are World War II veterans. Each received a shadow-box containing an arrangement of three commemorative World War II belt buckles. The combined efforts of these four individuals total of more than 146 years of dedicated service to veterans.

The WWII veterans include: Fred R. Cozad, Martin, 59 years as Bennett County VSO; Allen G. Hellesund, Timber Lake, 31 years as Dewey County VSO; Ralph 'Doc" Pesicka, Dupree, 31 years as Ziebach County VSO; and Oliver Brown Wolf, Eagle Butte, 25 years as Cheyenne River Sioux TVSO.
Department of Game, Fish, and Parks Jody Moats, Naturalist for the Adam's Homestead and Nature Preserve, located north of Dakota Dunes, has been selected as one of two recipients for the Master Frontline Interpreter Award through the National Association for Interpretation.  This professional organization of over 5,000 members worldwide recognizes outstanding work and contributions each fall season at its National Interpreter's Workshop (NIW), and the award symbolizes the best of the best within the field of interpretive and educational services.  The Master Frontline Interpreter award focuses its status on interpreters (often called naturalists) that provide frontline duties in the field of conservation education and environmental education.  The candidates have to work in the field more than 65 percent of their time and must have more than five years of professional experience.

A fellow staff member, Bradley Block of Custer State Park, showcased Jody's talents through his nomination materials.  "Jody is a shining example of a high quality and passionate naturalist.  She possesses a skill for program development that exceeds the norm when it comes to natural history education."  Kay Gannon of The Outdoor Campus states, “Jody Moats is a generous colleague, a superior interpreter/educator, a gifted visionary, and a compassionate woman who works tirelessly and joyfully on behalf of the natural world and all of its inhabitants."  Other South Dakota colleagues chimed in on the positive and thoughtful remarks, to honor a fellow GFP employee for a job well-done.  Jody will be officially recognized at the NIW in Portland, Oregon in November.

The Adams Homestead and Nature Area is a component of South Dakota’s State Park System.
Bureau of Administration Jeff Holden, Office of Procurement Management, received an award from the National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO) in honor of his past year of service as NASPO President.  The award was given at the NASPO Annual Meeting held in St. Louis September 8-11, 2008.
Department of Corrections
  • Sgt. Jeremy Ortman of the Yankton Minimum Unit was named the 2008 Outstanding Member of the South Dakota Corrections Association at their Fall Conference September 17th.  
  • Amy Bisgard was named as Parole Agent of the Year during the Fall 2008 Parole Safety and Staff Development training in Sioux Falls September 25th.
  • Kim Tvedt, East River Foster Care Specialist, was elected President-Elect of the South Dakota Corrections Association (SDCA) during a conference in Spearfish in September.  Denise Hepper, Yankton Juvenile Corrections Agent, was elected as Treasurer.  Meredith Jones, South Dakota State Penitentiary, and Ross Smith, Sioux Falls Juvenile Corrections Agent, were both elected to the SDCA Executive Board.
  • Corrections Secretary Tim Reisch was honored with an Award of Support by the National Association of Correctional Records Administrators and Supervisors (NACRAS) at their national conference in Minneapolis, MN September 23rd
Department of Health
  • Kenny Doppenberg recently received the Jim Bernstein Mentoring Award from the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health at the group’s September meeting in Traverse City, Michigan. Kenny is the Rural Hospitals Program Coordinator for the Office of Rural Health in Pierre. He has been an active member of the organization, including serving two terms as the chair of the Mentoring Committee.
  • Margaret Hansen, Executive Director of the South Dakota Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners, has been elected the Central States Region Representative to the Administrators in Medicine. AIM is a national, non-profit organization which assists and supports the medical licensing and regulatory authorities to achieve administrative excellence and advance public safety. As one of four regional representatives, she holds a seat on the AIM Board of Directors and will serve a two-year term. Also, she has been invited by the Federation of State Medical Boards to be a member of the Special Committee on Strategic Positioning.
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Sergeant First Class Doug Brandsrud, Clear Lake, S.D., was honored for his service to the nation at a National Guard Freedom Salute Ceremony on Sunday, Sept. 7, at the Sioux Falls Army National Guard Armory.

The National Guard Freedom Salute Campaign is a dedication to the Soldiers, family members, and employers of units deployed in support of Operations Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, Noble Eagle, and peacekeeping operations across the globe. On behalf of the National Guard, each eligible Soldier is presented with an encased American flag, a sequentially numbered commemorative coin, a certificate of appreciation, and a lapel insignia.

Captain David Lloyd was honored during an activation ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 6, at the Range Road Armory in Rapid City.

Capt. Lloyd is currently assigned as the commander for Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 109th Regional Support Group and will deploy for one year with the 287th Sustainment Brigade of the Kansas Army National Guard in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Lloyd, 38, is a parole officer with the Wyoming Department of Corrections and lives in Gillette, Wyo
Department of Game, Fish, and Parks John Cooper receives Assoc. of  Fish & Wildlife Agencies Seth Gordon Award : This award is conferred on individuals who have worked steadfastly and effectively for the best use of North American Natural Resources in the public trust and for their contributions to the association.  This award was established in honor of Seth Gordon who had one of the longest, continuous careers in fish and wildlife conservation in honor of his 50 years of service to the Association.

Cooper’s vision, leadership, personal and professional integrity, passion, persistence good humor, and willingness to tackle rather than side step challenges stands as a model for public agency conservation administrators of the 21st century.

 “Few people in the professional wildlife conservation community have brought as many attributes and contributed as much to the cause of conservation,” said Wayne MacCallum, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife Director and Chair of the Association’s Awards Committee of John Cooper.

Assoc, of Fish & Wildlife Agencies Special Recognition Award
George Vandel has been an unwavering advocate for the conservation of waterfowl and other migratory birds.  A member of the Association’s Waterfowl Working Group and Migratory Bird Conservation Committee, he is actively involved in the implementation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan and has been a charter member and Chair of the Prairie Pothole Joint Venture Management Board and Chair of the Central Flyway.  Vandel also has been a strong voice on behalf of landscape-scale habitat management working to encourage state and federal programs designed to engage broad partnerships that include private land owners in migratory bird conservation.

Jim McDonough Award Winner: Eileen Dowd Stukel has been awarded the Jim McDonough award by the National Wildlife Society.  The award is presented to an individual who has made significant contributions to wildlife resources.  During her 20 years with the department, Eileen has directed or coordinated several grant programs.  In addition, as the leader of the state’s Teaming with Wildlife initiative, she has solicited endorsements from more than 150 conservation-minded organizations.  At the same time, she has authored or directed the production of many management plans for South Dakota and either shares or has full authorship in books and reports on many non-game topics as well.

State Parks Distinguished Service Award : Mark Steck, regional park supervisor stationed at Newton Hills State Park, received the 2008 South Dakota State Parks Distinguished Service Award.  Each year, one employee who embodies the true mission of the State Park system is selected for this honor.

In his years with the state park system Steck has provided the leadership that led to the successful restoration of Spirit Mound Historic Prairie, he has been an outstanding mentor to numerous seasonal and permanent employees, he has provided sound direction for statewide park ranger training program and he has ensured the improvement of natural resources in every park he has managed during his career as a park manager including Palisades State Park and Newton Hills State Park.

Pierre Man Honored with Award of Appreciation: Travis Theilen was honored with the South Dakota State Park’s Award of Appreciation at the division’s annual meeting held recently in Brookings.  Theilen began with the State Park’s System as a seasonal employee at Lewis and Clark Recreation Area in Yankton. He has since been employed at Snake Creek Recreation Area near Platte and Randall Creek Recreation Area near Pickstown before becoming the park manager at Oahe Downstream Recreation Area.

“Travis is an outstanding employee, always willing to work when needed to complete a job,” said Pat Buscher, park supervisor at Oahe Downstream. “He is very knowledgeable, even keeled and a very good customer service-minded employee.”

“In addition to his campground duties, Travis is playing a key role in managing the construction of a new marina at Spring Creek Recreation Area,” said assistant state park director Bob Schneider. “This summer Travis was also very involved in reopening several boat ramps on Lake Oahe.”

Roughlock Falls Design Team Honored: The three individuals responsible for the recent transformation of the Roughlock Falls Nature Area have been honored with the Design Innovation Award.  Paul Beckwith of Pierre was the architect for the project developing the design for the walkways, overlooks, and facility improvements at the falls.  Brad Block of Custer designed the new displays that interpret the history and natural environment at Roughlock Falls.  Harley Noem of Spearfish developed the operations plan for the management of Roughlock Falls utilizing volunteers, seasonal staff, and local contractors.


State Parks Seasonal of the Year
: Fort Sisseton Historic State Park seasonal employee Eileen Warzeka was recently named the 2008 Seasonal Employee of the Year.  Warzeka is being recognized for going above and beyond what was expected of her by training staff, organizing school tours, and helping with special event planning.  Katie Bogue, park manager at Fort Sisseton Historic State Park said, “For the past several years, Eileen has balanced cleaning and maintaining buildings, attending the visitor center, giving tours, coordinating volunteers, and aiding in gift shop accounting and merchandising. Even after her summer time at the park is done, Eileen is always on call for school tours, special winter events, and spring cleaning!”

Lake Poinsett Volunteer Honored: Harlan Olson of Brookings was named the 2008 Volunteer of the Year for the South Dakota State Parks.  Olson was instrumental in the planning, development, and construction of the Lake Poinsett Museum.  He donated every item in the museum for use and display including Indian artifacts, arrowheads, stone tools, fur trade items, decoys, and many antique fishing lures.  The museum has developed into an attraction for park visitors and tourists alike.  The museum effectively tells the story of visitors to Lake Poinsett from Native Americans to our modern day recreational users.

“Harlan's dedication and continued involvement with our park user's is unbelievable,” said Lee Kratochvil, regional park supervisor.  “Harlan loves telling the story of Lake Poinsett.  Every Friday, Saturday, and part of Sundays, Harlan can be found volunteering in the museum.  Each visitor gets a personal tour, complete with historical perspectives.”  Olson also makes numerous presentations to school, scout, and senior groups throughout the year, thus improving the out-reach efforts for the park.

Teamwork Award: Palisades State Park Lodge Construction Team received a teamwork award for renovations to the Palisades State Park lodge near Garretson.  The four-bedroom home near Palisades State Park was purchased in July, 2007, and the team worked hard through the winter months to complete the renovations to have the lodge ready for use in time for the Memorial Weekend reservations.  The team, along with the help of several contractors, extensively remodeled the home to better accommodate different types of family and community groups, and to meet ADA accessibility standards. They also upgraded the heating and cooling system, replaced windows, added patio doors and a large deck onto the back of the house, and converted a garage into an enclosed picnic shelter.

Recipients of the 2008 Teamwork Award were conservation technician Mark Robinson from Palisades, park manager Derek Dorr from Lake Vermillion Recreation Area, park manager Jason Baumann from the Big Sioux Recreation Area, crew leader Mike Baum from Palisades, conservation technician Dennis Stoffel from Newton Hills State Park, conservation technician Scott Gustaf from Lake Herman State Park, park manager Dan Grewing from the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, and district park supervisor Marty DeWitt from Palisades.

Custer State Park Maintenance Crew Honored: The maintenance employees at Custer State Park were honored with a teamwork award.  Some of the extra work accomplished by the park maintenance crew this past year included a water line extension project at Blue Bell Campground; landscaping, tree planting and rock work at the new Creekside Lodge; landscaping at the renovated Blue Bell store; burying power lines in the Blue Bell Resort area; building access roads; and installing camping cabins in Custer State Park campgrounds.

“Custer State Park is in the midst of an extensive $14 million, 3-year facility and infrastructure upgrade project, and the crew went above and beyond the call of duty this winter and spring,” commented Custer State Park manager Richard Miller. “They were able to accomplish all their normal duties of getting the Park open and ready for guests, all while assisting contractors and other park staff in implementing projects associated with the bonding program that was approved by the State Legislator last year.  I'm really proud of how the crew dug in and was able to complete everything in a quality and timely manner,” said Miller.

Members of the team are all employed with Custer State Park and include physical plant manager Doug Scott, conservation foreman Tom Miklos, physical plant manager August Heyne, building maintenance supervisor Steve Housley, building maintenance lead workers Bert Winchester and Chad Borkowski, highway maintenance supervisor Ron Mertens, lead highway maintenance workers Jesse Degnan and Allen Skrdlant, policy analyst Greg Goebel, equipment shop foreman Roger Steinhauer, equipment technicians Roger Sietsma and Blake Clark, building engineer assistant Jayme Severyn, and purchasing property manager Sue Palmer.
Department of Health The Miner County Pandemic Flu Planning Committee received the South Dakota Association of County Commissioners’ Runner-up County Achievement Award for its efforts in writing the county plan and promoting it throughout the county. The award was presented at the group’s September 22 meeting and then the Miner County Commissioners presented it to county Pandemic Planning Team members Barb Esser and Lindsey Karlson. Barb is one of our Community Health Nurses.
Department of Social Services Deb Bowman received the Distinguished Service Award from SDAHO.  Interestingly, it was several nursing home administrators who submitted the nomination not the organization itself so it did turn-out to be a nice honor.
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Two teams of runners from the South Dakota Army National Guard took top honors at the Army Ten-Miler race on Sunday, Oct. 5, in Washington D.C.

Runners and Results
  • SDARNG Women's Team - 1st Place
    • Maj. Jonette Murphy - 1 hour, 25 minutes
    • 2nd Lt. Maria Fritza - 1:26
    • Spc. Eliann Bray - 1:33
    • Sgt. 1st Class Michaelette Higgins - 1:37
  • SDARNG Men's Team - 3rd Place
    • Chief Warrant Officer Robert Steadman - 1:08
    • Lt. Col. Tim Moran - 1:11
    • Sgt. 1st Class Corey Rabenberg - 1:16
    • Staff Sgt. Richard Harming - 1:21
    • Sgt. 1st Class Jared Richter - 1:23
Department of Health We recently presented our second annual Secretary’s Awards for outstanding department employees.

Excellence in the Workplace Awards for outstanding performance in the past year:
  • Tuberculosis Control Program Coordinator Kristin Rounds, Pierre, and Sioux Falls Disease Intervention Specialists Karen Dover and Beth Johnson for their persistence and professionalism in handling a particularly difficult drug-resistant TB case.
  • Mary Bishop, Medical Secretary for Correctional Health Services at the Women’s Prison in Pierre her calm professionalism, her willingness to help, and her organizational skills.
Outstanding Contribution Awards for significant contributions over a career:
  • Office of Disease Prevention Administrator Bonnie Jameson, Pierre, was honored for her 25 years of service to public health and her leadership in initiatives ranging from the state’s West Nile response to the smallpox vaccination effort.
  • Roxie Tipton, Senior Health Facilities Surveyor, Pierre, has been a DOH employee since 1995 and played a key role in developing our first electronic licensing process for online license renewal for hospitals. Roxie was also recently honored with the 2008 Francis T. Ishida Award for Customer Service from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Region VIII Denver office. The award recognizes exceptional achievements of those who provide services to the beneficiaries of Medicare and Medicaid and is one of the highest honors given by CMS.
  • Former DOH Finance Officer Linda Zeller, Pierre, received the award for 37 years of state government service, the majority of those years as Finance Officer for DOH. Linda’s expertise and knowledge was invaluable and widely sought in DOH and state government as well. She retired in January.
Department of Agriculture State Fair Park Receives Awards:
  • The SD Office of Tourism Great Event Campaign named the Outdoor Expo as 1 of 5 great events for 2009.  As part of the campaign, the Office of Tourism will assist us in a marketing campaign for this event.
  • The Huron Mayor’s Award for Excellence was presented to the South Dakota State Fair Park on November 20.  This award is sponsored by the Greater Huron Development Corporation to recognize outstanding contributions by a business to the economic development of the Huron community.  Recipients of this award portray qualities that encourage a contribution of time, volunteerism and financial commitment to the region’s future for development and overall quality of life.
Department of Health Freeman Nursing Facility Honor: The Oakview Terrace Nursing Facility in Freeman has been chosen by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to be featured in a national video about reducing the use of restraints. Oakview has been very successful in this regard and it’s great to see them recognized for their efforts and serve as a model for other facilities. Oakview is the only facility in the country selected by CMS for this honor.
Department of Environment and Natural Resources Region VIII EPA Environmental Achievement Award: Dr. Dennis Clarke, retired Senior Scientist, was recognized “for his lifetime of dedication to sustained agriculture and his environmental achievements in helping to improve and protect the waters of the State of South Dakota.”
Bureau of Administration Rich Ivey (OSE) successfully completed the examination and requirements for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional.
Department of Revenue and Regulation
Executive Secretary Larry Eliason
Gaming Commission Executive Secretary Larry Eliason has been named Chairman of the Model Rules Committee of Racing Commissioners International. The Model Rules Committee meets periodically to develop model regulations governing horse and greyhound racing, track operation, licensing, tote company standards, pari-mutuel wagering and security, off-track betting and advanced deposit wagering. With Larry’s more than 25 years of experience as a racing regulator, he is a great choice for the position


Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Sol Brich
The Rotary Foundation’s Group Study Exchange (GSE) program is a unique cultural and vocational exchange opportunity for business people and professionals between the ages of 25 and 40 who are in the early stages of their careers. Sol Brich was awarded a Rotary Group Study Exchange with Brazil.


Bureau of Information and Technology
SDPB won six regional Edward R. Morrow Awards given out by the RTNDA. They won overall excellence for the second year in a row!


Department of Health
Chris Carlson
Chris Carlson, Senior Microbiologist in the Public Health Laboratory, has been asked to be an instructor for the Epi Ready courses that are sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Environmental Health Association. NEHA is building a roster of people across the country that are able to teach 1 or 2 courses per year, starting in 2009. It is definitely an honor to be chosen as an instructor for this course and certainly reflects well on the caliber of our laboratory staff.


Department of Revenue and Regulation
The Division of Insurance received an excellent score from the NAIC audit for financial solvency review and was awarded re-accreditation for another five years from the NAIC. This is an important certification for the division and for its domestic insurers as they will continue to benefit through reciprocity with other accredited states that they write business in.


Department of Corrections
  • Penitentiary Unit Manager Troy Ponto (right) received the Law Enforcement recognition award from the Sioux Falls Optimist Club in May.
  • Officer Tom Heilman from the Yankton Minimum Unit received the Officer of the Year Award from the Yankton Lions Club in May.
  • Dennis Wheeler, Mobridge JCA, received the Annual Team Member Award at the Juvenile Community Corrections training session in Pierre May 7th.
  • Linda Bias, Rapid City JCA, received a Youth Service award from Behavior Management Systems May 27th for her work with juvenile offenders and their families



Department of Corrections
The South Dakota State Penitentiary has been nominated for the most prestigious employer support award from the National Guard. The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award is the highest recognition given to an employer for their support of their employees who also serve in the National Guard and Reserve. Nominations must come from a Guard or Reserve member who is employed by the organization they are nominating.


Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
  • Three Airmen of the 114th Logistics Squadron, South Dakota Air National Guard, are among the nation's first to receive the recently authorized Air Force Combat Action Medal.
    • A medal presentation ceremony honoring Master Sergeant Dana S. Storm, Crooks, SD, and Staff Sergeant Luke A. Cunningham, Vermillion, SD, was held at 1 p.m. on Sunday, March 2, at Joe Foss Field in Sioux Falls.
    • A third medal for the late Tech. Sergeant Keith J. Fuerst, Parkston, SD, was presented posthumously to his family. Fuerst lost his life in a civilian motor-vehicle accident in December 2006.
  • First Sergeant Diann Deyo, management analyst for the South Dakota National Guard Surface Maintenance Office, was awarded Service Technician of the Year on May 16, 2008, for her displayed excellence in job performance.
  • Second Lieutenant Patrick J. Schnieder of the Air Guard's 114th Maintenance Squadron received the prestigious Lt. Col. John J. Steele Award on April 25-26, 2008. Schnieder is currently the maintenance officer for the Equipment Maintenance Flight where he is responsible for munitions storage, aerospace ground equipment, non-destructive inspection, fabrication and phase maintenance.
  • Chief Warrant Officer Brett Anderson was awarded the CW4 Michael F. O'Conner Award on April 25-26, 2008. Anderson joined the National Guard during his senior year at Riggs High School in Pierre in 1989. Two years later, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps and served as an artilleryman with the 1st Battalion, Second Marine Division. During his four-year tour, Anderson served in support of Operation Restore Hope in Somalia in 1993. Returning in 1995, he rejoined the 147th Field Artillery Brigade, South Dakota Army National Guard, and began working full-time for the Guard in 1997. Anderson is currently serving as the property management officer for the United States Property and Fiscal Office at Camp Rapid



Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Risking his life to help save his neighbor’s house that caught on fire last summer, Staff Sergeant Troy Spear, Black Hawk, was awarded the South Dakota Ribbon of Valor during a ceremony on June 10 at the Range Road Armory.


Bureau of Information and Technology
SDPB’s Charles Michael Ray received a national Edward R. Morrow Award in Hard News Feature category—his second one in the last four years.


Department of Game, Fish, and Parks
George Vandel received the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife President’s Award for his many years of dedicated service, leadership, and vision for fish and wildlife across South Dakota and western states.


Department of Game, Fish, and Parks
Eileen Stukel Dowd received The Wildlife Society’s Jim McDonough Award. The award is presented annually to a certified wildlife biologist who has made solid contributions to the wildlife profession without major recognition. Eileen was chosen for the award based on her work with the Teaming with Wildlife initiative, other grant programs, work on action plans for endangered species, bird conservation and bat management, and work on a number of books, trail guides and technical reports. The award will be presented to Eileen when The Wildlife Society has their annual meeting in Miami, FL, in November.


Department of Game, Fish, and Parks
Hughes County Conservation Officer John Murphy was selected as the 2007 Boating Safety Officer of the Year.  This award is presented on behalf of the National Association of Boating Law Administrators and the National Association of Boating Administrator.


Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Tammy Chase, Sisseton, received the prestigious AMVETS PNC John S. Lorec National Guard Volunteer of the Year award at the National Guard Family Program conference in St. Louis, Missouri, on July 23.  This national award recognizes volunteers for exceptional service to military and family members and to their community.  Chase was also awarded $1,000 for her unit's family readiness group.


Bureau of Administration
South Dakota State Federal Surplus Property Manager Daryl Haeder has been honored by his piers at the National Association of State Agencies for Surplus Property (NASASP) with the first annual Daryl Haeder Lifetime Achievement Award.  The award, named in Mr. Haeder’s honor, is presented to any member of a state agency for surplus property who embodies the principles that are guided by honor, honesty, and integrity in order that those agencies may merit the respect and confidence of associates and the public they serve.


Department of Health
Joan Frerichs will receive the March of Dimes Nurse of the Year Award later this month during the 33rd Annual South Dakota Perinatal Association Conference in Pierre. Joan is a Grant County Community Health Nurse in Milbank.


Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Cited for their strong dedication to serving veterans and their families, three county/tribal veteran service officers (C/TVSO) and one support staff member were recognized at an awards program held Monday night, Aug. 25, at the Pierre American Legion Cabin.
  • Loy Carda, of Lemmon, received the 'Jim Melgaard Award' that distinguishes him as the 2008 County/Tribal Veteran Service Officer of the Year. As the VSO for Perkins County, Carda was responsible in purchasing a van for the Disabled American Veterans and assisted with driving and scheduling its use. He developed a program to provide veterans with medical equipment at no cost; provides excellent outreach and public information to his local veterans and their families; assists local veterans in the applying for various benefits programs; and has a positive approach in finding solutions to difficult issues.
  • Bobby G. Miller, of Plankinton, was awarded the 2008 Excellence in Outreach, 'Robert Lindblad Award.' Representing Aurora and Brule counties, Miller is involved in organizing all types of veterans' forums. He has played a key role in assisting local veterans in obtaining their medals and awards. On a monthly basis, Miller transports clothing, furniture and other items to the Michael J. Fitzmaurice State Veterans Home. He also makes special trips to the Veterans Home at Christmas or if a veteran needs transportation for enrollment in the Home.
  • Eric Johnson, of Pierre, was selected for the 2008 Excellence in Veterans Education, 'Les Mord Award.'  Johnson was cited for his excellence in promoting training programs in his tri-county area that includes Stanley, Hughes, and Sully Counties. He has taken the 'extra step' to ensure that those eligible for VA educational benefits are aware of the many educational and vocational opportunities that are available to them.
Faye Johnston, of Sisseton, received the 2008 Support Staff of the Year Award.  She was recognized for her dedication and caring approach in helping Roberts County veterans and their families.

Also highlighted at the ceremony, were three county and one tribal veteran service officers who are World War II veterans. Each received a shadow-box containing an arrangement of three commemorative World War II belt buckles. The combined efforts of these four individuals total of more than 146 years of dedicated service to veterans.

The WWII veterans include: Fred R. Cozad, Martin, 59 years as Bennett County VSO; Allen G. Hellesund, Timber Lake, 31 years as Dewey County VSO; Ralph 'Doc" Pesicka, Dupree, 31 years as Ziebach County VSO; and Oliver Brown Wolf, Eagle Butte, 25 years as Cheyenne River Sioux TVSO.


Department of Game, Fish, and Parks
Jody Moats, Naturalist for the Adam's Homestead and Nature Preserve, located north of Dakota Dunes, has been selected as one of two recipients for the Master Frontline Interpreter Award through the National Association for Interpretation.  This professional organization of over 5,000 members worldwide recognizes outstanding work and contributions each fall season at its National Interpreter's Workshop (NIW), and the award symbolizes the best of the best within the field of interpretive and educational services.  The Master Frontline Interpreter award focuses its status on interpreters (often called naturalists) that provide frontline duties in the field of conservation education and environmental education.  The candidates have to work in the field more than 65 percent of their time and must have more than five years of professional experience.

A fellow staff member, Bradley Block of Custer State Park, showcased Jody's talents through his nomination materials.  "Jody is a shining example of a high quality and passionate naturalist.  She possesses a skill for program development that exceeds the norm when it comes to natural history education."  Kay Gannon of The Outdoor Campus states, “Jody Moats is a generous colleague, a superior interpreter/educator, a gifted visionary, and a compassionate woman who works tirelessly and joyfully on behalf of the natural world and all of its inhabitants."  Other South Dakota colleagues chimed in on the positive and thoughtful remarks, to honor a fellow GFP employee for a job well-done.  Jody will be officially recognized at the NIW in Portland, Oregon in November.

The Adams Homestead and Nature Area is a component of South Dakota’s State Park System.


Bureau of Administration
Jeff Holden, Office of Procurement Management, received an award from the National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO) in honor of his past year of service as NASPO President.  The award was given at the NASPO Annual Meeting held in St. Louis September 8-11, 2008.


Department of Corrections
  • Sgt. Jeremy Ortman of the Yankton Minimum Unit was named the 2008 Outstanding Member of the South Dakota Corrections Association at their Fall Conference September 17th.  
  • Amy Bisgard was named as Parole Agent of the Year during the Fall 2008 Parole Safety and Staff Development training in Sioux Falls September 25th.
  • Kim Tvedt, East River Foster Care Specialist, was elected President-Elect of the South Dakota Corrections Association (SDCA) during a conference in Spearfish in September.  Denise Hepper, Yankton Juvenile Corrections Agent, was elected as Treasurer.  Meredith Jones, South Dakota State Penitentiary, and Ross Smith, Sioux Falls Juvenile Corrections Agent, were both elected to the SDCA Executive Board.
  • Corrections Secretary Tim Reisch was honored with an Award of Support by the National Association of Correctional Records Administrators and Supervisors (NACRAS) at their national conference in Minneapolis, MN September 23rd
Department of Health
  • Kenny Doppenberg recently received the Jim Bernstein Mentoring Award from the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health at the group’s September meeting in Traverse City, Michigan. Kenny is the Rural Hospitals Program Coordinator for the Office of Rural Health in Pierre. He has been an active member of the organization, including serving two terms as the chair of the Mentoring Committee.
  • Margaret Hansen, Executive Director of the South Dakota Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners, has been elected the Central States Region Representative to the Administrators in Medicine. AIM is a national, non-profit organization which assists and supports the medical licensing and regulatory authorities to achieve administrative excellence and advance public safety. As one of four regional representatives, she holds a seat on the AIM Board of Directors and will serve a two-year term. Also, she has been invited by the Federation of State Medical Boards to be a member of the Special Committee on Strategic Positioning.



Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Sergeant First Class Doug Brandsrud, Clear Lake, S.D., was honored for his service to the nation at a National Guard Freedom Salute Ceremony on Sunday, Sept. 7, at the Sioux Falls Army National Guard Armory.

The National Guard Freedom Salute Campaign is a dedication to the Soldiers, family members, and employers of units deployed in support of Operations Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, Noble Eagle, and peacekeeping operations across the globe. On behalf of the National Guard, each eligible Soldier is presented with an encased American flag, a sequentially numbered commemorative coin, a certificate of appreciation, and a lapel insignia.

Captain David Lloyd was honored during an activation ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 6, at the Range Road Armory in Rapid City.

Capt. Lloyd is currently assigned as the commander for Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 109th Regional Support Group and will deploy for one year with the 287th Sustainment Brigade of the Kansas Army National Guard in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Lloyd, 38, is a parole officer with the Wyoming Department of Corrections and lives in Gillette, Wyo


Department of Game, Fish, and Parks
John Cooper receives Assoc. of  Fish & Wildlife Agencies Seth Gordon Award : This award is conferred on individuals who have worked steadfastly and effectively for the best use of North American Natural Resources in the public trust and for their contributions to the association.  This award was established in honor of Seth Gordon who had one of the longest, continuous careers in fish and wildlife conservation in honor of his 50 years of service to the Association.

Cooper’s vision, leadership, personal and professional integrity, passion, persistence good humor, and willingness to tackle rather than side step challenges stands as a model for public agency conservation administrators of the 21st century.

 “Few people in the professional wildlife conservation community have brought as many attributes and contributed as much to the cause of conservation,” said Wayne MacCallum, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife Director and Chair of the Association’s Awards Committee of John Cooper.

Assoc, of Fish & Wildlife Agencies Special Recognition Award
George Vandel has been an unwavering advocate for the conservation of waterfowl and other migratory birds.  A member of the Association’s Waterfowl Working Group and Migratory Bird Conservation Committee, he is actively involved in the implementation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan and has been a charter member and Chair of the Prairie Pothole Joint Venture Management Board and Chair of the Central Flyway.  Vandel also has been a strong voice on behalf of landscape-scale habitat management working to encourage state and federal programs designed to engage broad partnerships that include private land owners in migratory bird conservation.

Jim McDonough Award Winner: Eileen Dowd Stukel has been awarded the Jim McDonough award by the National Wildlife Society.  The award is presented to an individual who has made significant contributions to wildlife resources.  During her 20 years with the department, Eileen has directed or coordinated several grant programs.  In addition, as the leader of the state’s Teaming with Wildlife initiative, she has solicited endorsements from more than 150 conservation-minded organizations.  At the same time, she has authored or directed the production of many management plans for South Dakota and either shares or has full authorship in books and reports on many non-game topics as well.

State Parks Distinguished Service Award : Mark Steck, regional park supervisor stationed at Newton Hills State Park, received the 2008 South Dakota State Parks Distinguished Service Award.  Each year, one employee who embodies the true mission of the State Park system is selected for this honor.

In his years with the state park system Steck has provided the leadership that led to the successful restoration of Spirit Mound Historic Prairie, he has been an outstanding mentor to numerous seasonal and permanent employees, he has provided sound direction for statewide park ranger training program and he has ensured the improvement of natural resources in every park he has managed during his career as a park manager including Palisades State Park and Newton Hills State Park.

Pierre Man Honored with Award of Appreciation: Travis Theilen was honored with the South Dakota State Park’s Award of Appreciation at the division’s annual meeting held recently in Brookings.  Theilen began with the State Park’s System as a seasonal employee at Lewis and Clark Recreation Area in Yankton. He has since been employed at Snake Creek Recreation Area near Platte and Randall Creek Recreation Area near Pickstown before becoming the park manager at Oahe Downstream Recreation Area.

“Travis is an outstanding employee, always willing to work when needed to complete a job,” said Pat Buscher, park supervisor at Oahe Downstream. “He is very knowledgeable, even keeled and a very good customer service-minded employee.”

“In addition to his campground duties, Travis is playing a key role in managing the construction of a new marina at Spring Creek Recreation Area,” said assistant state park director Bob Schneider. “This summer Travis was also very involved in reopening several boat ramps on Lake Oahe.”

Roughlock Falls Design Team Honored: The three individuals responsible for the recent transformation of the Roughlock Falls Nature Area have been honored with the Design Innovation Award.  Paul Beckwith of Pierre was the architect for the project developing the design for the walkways, overlooks, and facility improvements at the falls.  Brad Block of Custer designed the new displays that interpret the history and natural environment at Roughlock Falls.  Harley Noem of Spearfish developed the operations plan for the management of Roughlock Falls utilizing volunteers, seasonal staff, and local contractors.


State Parks Seasonal of the Year
: Fort Sisseton Historic State Park seasonal employee Eileen Warzeka was recently named the 2008 Seasonal Employee of the Year.  Warzeka is being recognized for going above and beyond what was expected of her by training staff, organizing school tours, and helping with special event planning.  Katie Bogue, park manager at Fort Sisseton Historic State Park said, “For the past several years, Eileen has balanced cleaning and maintaining buildings, attending the visitor center, giving tours, coordinating volunteers, and aiding in gift shop accounting and merchandising. Even after her summer time at the park is done, Eileen is always on call for school tours, special winter events, and spring cleaning!”

Lake Poinsett Volunteer Honored: Harlan Olson of Brookings was named the 2008 Volunteer of the Year for the South Dakota State Parks.  Olson was instrumental in the planning, development, and construction of the Lake Poinsett Museum.  He donated every item in the museum for use and display including Indian artifacts, arrowheads, stone tools, fur trade items, decoys, and many antique fishing lures.  The museum has developed into an attraction for park visitors and tourists alike.  The museum effectively tells the story of visitors to Lake Poinsett from Native Americans to our modern day recreational users.

“Harlan's dedication and continued involvement with our park user's is unbelievable,” said Lee Kratochvil, regional park supervisor.  “Harlan loves telling the story of Lake Poinsett.  Every Friday, Saturday, and part of Sundays, Harlan can be found volunteering in the museum.  Each visitor gets a personal tour, complete with historical perspectives.”  Olson also makes numerous presentations to school, scout, and senior groups throughout the year, thus improving the out-reach efforts for the park.

Teamwork Award: Palisades State Park Lodge Construction Team received a teamwork award for renovations to the Palisades State Park lodge near Garretson.  The four-bedroom home near Palisades State Park was purchased in July, 2007, and the team worked hard through the winter months to complete the renovations to have the lodge ready for use in time for the Memorial Weekend reservations.  The team, along with the help of several contractors, extensively remodeled the home to better accommodate different types of family and community groups, and to meet ADA accessibility standards. They also upgraded the heating and cooling system, replaced windows, added patio doors and a large deck onto the back of the house, and converted a garage into an enclosed picnic shelter.

Recipients of the 2008 Teamwork Award were conservation technician Mark Robinson from Palisades, park manager Derek Dorr from Lake Vermillion Recreation Area, park manager Jason Baumann from the Big Sioux Recreation Area, crew leader Mike Baum from Palisades, conservation technician Dennis Stoffel from Newton Hills State Park, conservation technician Scott Gustaf from Lake Herman State Park, park manager Dan Grewing from the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, and district park supervisor Marty DeWitt from Palisades.

Custer State Park Maintenance Crew Honored: The maintenance employees at Custer State Park were honored with a teamwork award.  Some of the extra work accomplished by the park maintenance crew this past year included a water line extension project at Blue Bell Campground; landscaping, tree planting and rock work at the new Creekside Lodge; landscaping at the renovated Blue Bell store; burying power lines in the Blue Bell Resort area; building access roads; and installing camping cabins in Custer State Park campgrounds.

“Custer State Park is in the midst of an extensive $14 million, 3-year facility and infrastructure upgrade project, and the crew went above and beyond the call of duty this winter and spring,” commented Custer State Park manager Richard Miller. “They were able to accomplish all their normal duties of getting the Park open and ready for guests, all while assisting contractors and other park staff in implementing projects associated with the bonding program that was approved by the State Legislator last year.  I'm really proud of how the crew dug in and was able to complete everything in a quality and timely manner,” said Miller.

Members of the team are all employed with Custer State Park and include physical plant manager Doug Scott, conservation foreman Tom Miklos, physical plant manager August Heyne, building maintenance supervisor Steve Housley, building maintenance lead workers Bert Winchester and Chad Borkowski, highway maintenance supervisor Ron Mertens, lead highway maintenance workers Jesse Degnan and Allen Skrdlant, policy analyst Greg Goebel, equipment shop foreman Roger Steinhauer, equipment technicians Roger Sietsma and Blake Clark, building engineer assistant Jayme Severyn, and purchasing property manager Sue Palmer.


Department of Health
The Miner County Pandemic Flu Planning Committee received the South Dakota Association of County Commissioners’ Runner-up County Achievement Award for its efforts in writing the county plan and promoting it throughout the county. The award was presented at the group’s September 22 meeting and then the Miner County Commissioners presented it to county Pandemic Planning Team members Barb Esser and Lindsey Karlson. Barb is one of our Community Health Nurses.


Department of Social Services
Deb Bowman received the Distinguished Service Award from SDAHO.  Interestingly, it was several nursing home administrators who submitted the nomination not the organization itself so it did turn-out to be a nice honor.


Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Two teams of runners from the South Dakota Army National Guard took top honors at the Army Ten-Miler race on Sunday, Oct. 5, in Washington D.C.

Runners and Results
  • SDARNG Women's Team - 1st Place
    • Maj. Jonette Murphy - 1 hour, 25 minutes
    • 2nd Lt. Maria Fritza - 1:26
    • Spc. Eliann Bray - 1:33
    • Sgt. 1st Class Michaelette Higgins - 1:37
  • SDARNG Men's Team - 3rd Place
    • Chief Warrant Officer Robert Steadman - 1:08
    • Lt. Col. Tim Moran - 1:11
    • Sgt. 1st Class Corey Rabenberg - 1:16
    • Staff Sgt. Richard Harming - 1:21
    • Sgt. 1st Class Jared Richter - 1:23



Department of Health
We recently presented our second annual Secretary’s Awards for outstanding department employees.

Excellence in the Workplace Awards for outstanding performance in the past year:
  • Tuberculosis Control Program Coordinator Kristin Rounds, Pierre, and Sioux Falls Disease Intervention Specialists Karen Dover and Beth Johnson for their persistence and professionalism in handling a particularly difficult drug-resistant TB case.
  • Mary Bishop, Medical Secretary for Correctional Health Services at the Women’s Prison in Pierre her calm professionalism, her willingness to help, and her organizational skills.
Outstanding Contribution Awards for significant contributions over a career:
  • Office of Disease Prevention Administrator Bonnie Jameson, Pierre, was honored for her 25 years of service to public health and her leadership in initiatives ranging from the state’s West Nile response to the smallpox vaccination effort.
  • Roxie Tipton, Senior Health Facilities Surveyor, Pierre, has been a DOH employee since 1995 and played a key role in developing our first electronic licensing process for online license renewal for hospitals. Roxie was also recently honored with the 2008 Francis T. Ishida Award for Customer Service from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Region VIII Denver office. The award recognizes exceptional achievements of those who provide services to the beneficiaries of Medicare and Medicaid and is one of the highest honors given by CMS.
  • Former DOH Finance Officer Linda Zeller, Pierre, received the award for 37 years of state government service, the majority of those years as Finance Officer for DOH. Linda’s expertise and knowledge was invaluable and widely sought in DOH and state government as well. She retired in January.



Department of Agriculture
State Fair Park Receives Awards:
  • The SD Office of Tourism Great Event Campaign named the Outdoor Expo as 1 of 5 great events for 2009.  As part of the campaign, the Office of Tourism will assist us in a marketing campaign for this event.
  • The Huron Mayor’s Award for Excellence was presented to the South Dakota State Fair Park on November 20.  This award is sponsored by the Greater Huron Development Corporation to recognize outstanding contributions by a business to the economic development of the Huron community.  Recipients of this award portray qualities that encourage a contribution of time, volunteerism and financial commitment to the region’s future for development and overall quality of life.



Department of Health
Freeman Nursing Facility Honor: The Oakview Terrace Nursing Facility in Freeman has been chosen by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to be featured in a national video about reducing the use of restraints. Oakview has been very successful in this regard and it’s great to see them recognized for their efforts and serve as a model for other facilities. Oakview is the only facility in the country selected by CMS for this honor.


Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Region VIII EPA Environmental Achievement Award: Dr. Dennis Clarke, retired Senior Scientist, was recognized “for his lifetime of dedication to sustained agriculture and his environmental achievements in helping to improve and protect the waters of the State of South Dakota.”


Bureau of Administration
Rich Ivey (OSE) successfully completed the examination and requirements for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional.