CURRENT ISSUE
JUNE 4, 2018 - VOL. 54 No. 8

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Chair's Column

Chamber, community benefit when people come together

By Keith Severson
2013-14 Chair of the Board

Keith Severson
Keith Severson
2013-14 Chair of the Board

We have a strong Chamber because of the involvement and actions of many.

I've been reminded of that a lot in the past month. First, I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to all of the businesses who supported the Sioux Empire Farm Show by loaning their staff to volunteer during the week, underwriting cash awards and trophies and participating in our annual Mayor's Round-Up & Sale of Champions auction.

This annual Chamber-sponsored event is a great reminder of our state's foundation, agriculture, as well as a look at a bright future. For 61 years our Chamber has provided an opportunity to develop a closer and cooperative working relationship between the city of Sioux Falls and the agricultural area and agricultural interests that surround us. Our farm show attracts tens of thousands of visitors from all across the U.S. and has a huge economic impact on our city.

This year, especially, was heartening. I'm proud that the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce added a special auction to raise funds for the Rancher Relief effort to help our neighbors on the west side of the state who were affected by the October 2013 blizzard. Through this auction, we raised more than $15,000 to help those ranchers recover. In addition, our Sale of Champions raised more than $60,000 for the top market producers who came to our show — setting another record and providing more incentives for these livestock producers to come back next year.

Because of the involvement of many, and it takes around 300 volunteers to put on the show, we had another event that we can be proud of — so thank you.

As we enter February and the heat of this year's legislative session, I'm also reminded of one of the fundamental purposes of our Chamber of Commerce — to bring people together, to discuss issues and to build consensus.

We have several opportunities this month to talk to our Sioux Falls area legislators and to take a trip to the state capital. We are fortunate to have the involvement of many who are engaged in legislative issues, through our committees and our volunteer board of directors. I hope you're paying attention to our advocacy efforts through our weekly publication, The Chamber Advocate, and our "live" reporting on Twitter at
@SFAreaAdvocate.

It takes the involvement of many to make South Dakota and Sioux Falls the economic powerhouse that it is. I'm thankful for the elected officials who serve as well as our members who invest in our Chamber.

There is always room for more voices — if you're interested in being more involved in the Chamber or you're not yet a Chamber member, we want to hear from you! Contact the Chamber office at 336-1620.

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