Mid-America EDC Board Member Spotlight: Jesse Fonkert
Thursday, November 17, 2022
Meet Jesse Fonkert, South Dakota Director and President & CEO, Sioux Metro Growth Alliance
Tell us about yourself! How long have you been on the Mid-America EDC board and a member?
I’ve been on the Mid-America EDC board for a little over a year, and I've been a member for two years. My friend and colleague, Dean Dziedzic, encouraged me to join the organization and apply for a seat on the Board. I’ve been working in economic development for the vast majority of my professional career and got started in it thanks to an internship with the Sioux Falls Development Foundation and Sioux Metro Growth Alliance. My favorite part about working in economic development is the ability to give back to the state and region that has helped shape me to be the person I am today.
Tell us about the Sioux Metro Growth Alliance and your role there.
The Sioux Metro Growth Alliance is a regional EDO that serves the economic development needs of 15 suburban and rural communities around Sioux Falls, SD. I serve as the President & CEO which is about five jobs in one. Working with rural communities to help them design business and talent attraction strategies excites me.
What are your economic development specialties?
I’m a jack of all trades but a master of none! Business attraction and industrial park development are the two areas I like to spend most of my time.
What are your favorite places and things to do in the Sioux Falls area and in South Dakota? What are some hidden gems people might not know about?
If you’re looking for the best filet mignon in Middle America that WON’T Break the bank, you must visit the Hartford Steak Co. Tavern in Hartford, SD. Home of the $12.95 filet mignon meal, the Hartford Steak Co. Tavern delivers a consistent experience that people of all backgrounds can enjoy. If you’re vegetarian, they even offer a pretty solid salad!