PIERRE – During her State of the State address, Gov. Kristi Noem tasked her Office of Economic Development with kickstarting the economy, and this week, she recognized two communities and an individual for their commitment and involvement in economic development.

Volga and Huron were selected as “Communities of the Year.”

“The Volga community, realizing its elementary school was outdated and outgrown, added 11 classrooms to accommodate the community’s growth,” Noem said. “While 11 classrooms are impressive on their own, constructing them without the need for increasing taxes is impressive and commendable. It’s no surprise that Prairie Aquatech, a leading producer of a high-protein feed ingredient used in the aquaculture industry, chose Volga as home for its new 45,000-square-foot, $60 million facility. The Volga community has a lot to be proud of, and these accomplishments are surely just the tip of the iceberg.”

“The Huron Regional Medical Center’s pre-apprenticeship program, which was approved by the South Dakota Department of Labor, connects area students with the healthcare industry through a job shadowing program. This program connects minority and English as a Second Language students to careers in the healthcare industry,” Noem said. “Additionally, the South Dakota State Fair increased its attendance by more than 2.5 percent. For these reasons and more, Huron is a leader in developing a bright future.”

The Excellence in Economic Development Award honors the dedication and commitment of eight South Dakotans, including Gov. George S. Mickelson, who lost their lives when returning home from an economic development event in 1993. Chuck Turbiville of Deadwood was honored posthumously with this year’s award. Turbiville died in October 2018.

“Chuck served our country in the Army. He served our state as a state representative and served faithfully in GOED and other areas of state government. He served his community as mayor and as the director of economic development. Chuck was active in his church, in the VFW and in the American Legion,” Noem said. “He was a servant leader who led, not for himself, but for the people of South Dakota.”

“Advancements in economic development are happening across South Dakota in communities large and small. As professionals, educators and parents, it is our responsibility to build a state, an economy, and a future where the next generation of South Dakotans can prosper,” Noem said. “This year’s recipients exemplify what it means to lead in economic development and it’s my pleasure to announce those today.”

COURTESY OF: The Brookings Register

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