The following were selected by a panel of judges as the top qualifying entries and will go on to compete in the next level of the competition on April 12 at the Sioux Falls Washington Pavilion. These new business ventures are competing for a top prize of $20,000 and students are vying for a $5,000 first place prize. Gov. Mike Rounds is expected to present the top awards during the evening ceremony.
The qualifying business entries are Frank Qin, ABS Technologies, Brookings; Ken and Melita Jones, Across Roads, Rapid City; Deborah Casey and Kristin Donnan Standard, Art of the Hills, Hill City; Richard Bleil, Ph.D., Bleil Laboratories, Inc., Madison; Lori Keleher and Jensi Kellogg-Andrus, Career Curriculum LLC, Wolsey; Kel Mohror, Coteau Wind & Power, Watertown; Raymond McArthur, P.E., Dakota PAD, LLC, Pierre; Dennis Kisch and Tim Frohreich, Dakota Ties, Inc., Yankton; Mike Vetter, DataSync, Madison; Nick Vande Weerd, Deer Creek Micro-Creamery, Bruce; Dan Friedrich, Frontier Security Solutions, Madison; Lance Glammeier, Glamme Systems, Colton; Joshua Pauli and Tom Halverson, Logic Lizard, LLC, Madison; Chad Maxwell, Natural Farrowing System LLC, Vermillion; Richard Gross, OctaFlex, Timber Lake; and Jeffrey Fiferlick, Triple F Floats LLC, Sioux Falls.
The qualifying student entries are Kelly Patnoe, Flight One Corporation, Rapid City; John Williams, HERMES Inc., Lead; Christopher Gross, Mail-A-Memory, Sioux Falls; Eric Hesla, Pro mAGs, Vermillion; Erik Gilbertson, Reel Duck Decoys, Sioux Falls; Jason Vollmer, Stink Out!, Volin; Tasiyagnunpa Livermont, TheBrookingsBeacon.com, Brookings; and David Napolitano, Whoa Doggie Co., Mt. Vernon.
The Governor's Giant Vision Business Awards were established to help citizens realize that South Dakota is the very best place to start a successful business. The program was designed as an opportunity for entrepreneurs to compete for seed money and a chance to achieve their dream.
Founders of the business program are Gov. Mike Rounds and the State of South Dakota; Black Hills Corp., Rapid City; Christiansen Land & Cattle Ltd., Kimball; Dacotah Banks, Aberdeen; Daktronics, Inc., Brookings; First National Bank SD, Yankton; Home Federal Bank, Sioux Falls; Toshiba America, Mitchell; US Bank, Sioux Falls, Aberdeen and Rapid City; and Wheeler Manufacturing, Lemmon.
The newly formed student competition is sponsored by Gov. Mike Rounds and Citibank South Dakota, NA of Sioux Falls.
This South Dakota Chamber of Commerce & Industry program is chaired by Brad Wheeler, Wheeler Manufacturing of Lemmon.
The April 12 event will also highlight existing businesses through the South Dakota Chamber's ABEX Awards in Business Excellence Program. Annual awards will be given for New Kid on the Block and Business of the Year. Portions of the day, and all evening activities, will be open to the public. Registration for the afternoon trade show, reception and evening awards ceremony is $50 per person.
Contact the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and Industry at 605-224-6161 for registration information. Registration deadline is Monday, April 9 – www.sdchamber.biz.