...it is time again for us to pull together and move forward toward our next success story.
The phrase "rising tides lift all ships" is at the heart of Forward Sioux Falls. This joint venture between the Greater Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce and the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, will be starting its eighth iteration in the coming days. Over the last three decades, Forward Sioux Falls has brought together the public and private sectors to work toward enhancing our economic development in the region. From the partnership between the Chamber and the Development Foundation, to the cooperation of leaders from "competing" organizations, this program is an example of collaboration at its peak.
The spirit of collaboration is personified in this campaign by two of the co-chairs, Dave Flicek, CEO of Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center, and Paul Hanson, Sioux Falls market president of Sanford Health. These two gentlemen have demonstrated, both their service as board members of the Chamber as well as in this next undertaking for Forward Sioux Falls, that the success of our community is integral to the continued success of their organizations.
It is in this vein then that in the coming weeks your organization will be asked to consider a financial contribution to Forward Sioux Falls. The new program of work for the next five years builds on the success of the past, while identifying new opportunities that will pay off in the future. In the spirit of collaboration and continued progress and success for the greater Sioux Falls area, we ask you to consider a financial commitment to support workforce attraction, retention and development, entrepreneurship and innovation, business advocacy and quality of place enhancements, and business recruitment, retention and expansion, among other initiatives that will help propel Sioux Falls forward!
I would be remiss if I failed to call attention to and celebrate the amazing announcement from First PREMIER Bank/PREMIER Bankcard and the state of South Dakota to contribute up to $200 million toward scholarships, specifically for need-based students. Initiatives like this provide the opportunities necessary to ensure that the next generation of South Dakotans will have the tools needed to continue the success of our state.
If there was ever a time that we need to look ahead to the hope and opportunity of the future, this is the time. The last year has been challenging for everybody, but we can now see sunshine on the horizon. As Sioux Falls has done so many times in the face of adversity, it is time again for us to pull together and move forward toward our next success story.