On Wednesday, June 21, we held a quarterly chapter meeting focused on labor-related topics. The meeting was well-attended, and attendees received three CPE hours listening to several educational presentations.
We kicked off the meeting with brief committee updates, and then welcomed our first speaker, Lon Clemensen. Lon, Vice President of Workforce Development for the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, works with government, non-profits, business leaders, and multiple areas of the educational realm to promote workforce development in Sioux Falls.
Following Lon’s presentation, Candy Hansen, President of Sioux Falls Thrive, spoke on the efforts of the Sioux Falls Thrive organization. The organization recently partnered with Augustana to provide research on a pilot program on affordable housing in Sioux Falls, and will be continuing to expand their efforts into other areas. The goal of Sioux Falls Thrive is to unite business, government, nonprofit, and faith sectors in a collective effort to enable children to achieve their educational and career potential. This is a work-force development initiative focused from cradle to career.
For our third speaker, we were pleased to welcome Bob Swanson to our meeting. Bob is the former President of Swanson & Youngdale, Inc. and is a suicide loss survivor. Bob’s oldest son, Michael, died by suicide in 2009. At our meeting Bob spoke on mental illness and suicide prevention, and offered a number of tips and techniques for businesses and individuals to apply as he explained his personal story.
Finally, Mary Fleming with the Department of Labor wrapped up the educational section of our meeting by speaking briefly on the H-2A and H-2B certification program and process. Attendees had the opportunity to ask a number of questions to help them understand how to participate successfully in this program.
Following a delicious lunch, many of the meeting attendees transitioned to the golf course, where a number of others joined the group for our 7th Annual Industry Builder Golf Tournament! The golf tournament was again a success, as 19 teams and numerous sponsors joined together to support students in our industry!