By: Dakota Resources

More than 100 entrepreneurs across rural South Dakota applied for the opportunity to be part of the Dakota Rising Fellowship, an experience designed to help rural business owners discover new ways to grow their businesses, themselves and their communities.

Three from Brookings – Kirsten Gjesdal, owner of The Carrot Seed Kitchen Co., and Seth Koch and Brant Mathiason of Wooden Legs Brewing Company – were selected as 2017 fellowship recipients, Dakota Resources has announced.

The business owners’ two-year experience with the rural entrepreneur development program will allow them to be part of a network of Dakota Rising fellows and alumni. They will also have access to leadership coaching, valuable tools and resources, empowering fellowship retreats, strategic business advice and a $10,000 grant to use for personal and business development.

The Carrot Seed Kitchen Co. is a kitchen and gourmet food retail store offering cooking classes and knife sharpening. The company has plans for future growth with potential for a licensed incubator kitchen and more possibilities for expansion.

Wooden Legs Brewing Company serves craft-brewed beers and great food in a pub-style atmosphere. The certified beer servers offer extensive knowledge of craft beers and an authentic, enjoyable experience. The local brewery is exploring expanded options for distribution.

The class of new Dakota Rising Fellows also includes the following rural entrepreneurs:

• Erin Beyke, Erin Beyke Agency, Canton

• Jen and Andy Holst, Embroidery & Screen Works, Yankton

• Tanya Olson and Matt Fridell, Tallgrass Landscape Architecture, Custer

• Tyra Gefroh, Tyra Gefroh Photography, Britton

• Amber and Jamey Nehring, Renatus Woodworking, Sturgis

• Jamie Ellenwood, Badlands Trading Company, Rapid Valley

“We had an amazing response to this year’s Dakota Rising Fellowship opportunity,” said Beth Davis, president of Dakota Resources.

“Selecting the winners from such an impressive field of candidates was difficult. Our new class of Fellows comes from all across the state with vastly different backgrounds. We are confident these rural entrepreneurs are going to do great things for themselves and for their communities.”

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