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Leaders are the essence of small towns and rural communities. The success or failure of any housing, community or economic development efforts in the places we call home often rests upon the level of engagement and investment of local citizen leaders. Yet, in so many communities I work in across South Dakota there is an invisible divide holding back the development of a strong leadership base. I hear experienced leaders saying, “Young people just don’t want to be involved in the community!” and I hear emerging leaders saying, “The people in charge won’t let us try anything new!”
So, I am asking you, “How can we empower more people to lead in our rural communities?”
To begin searching for a solution to this question, I want to help you understand two community leadership systems that exist:
Most community leadership systems currently operate in … Read More »
Wall, South Dakota’s tagline is “Window to the Badlands.” Thanks to the efforts of a forward-thinking city council and a progressive economic development corporation, that window is opening to dozens of new opportunities for this tourism-based community.
One of those opportunities includes a strategic focus on housing development to help overcome Wall’s dire lack of available housing. To help generate new ideas and access more housing resources, the Wall Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) joined the Dakota Resources Home Address Plus learning network in 2016 to help connect with other rural communities and learn from their successes. The network offers online support for housing questions, monthly webinars, access to tools and resources and bi-annual Home Address Plus learning network gatherings.
“We were invited to try the network before we joined. The first gathering we attended was very inspiring. We could see the … Read More »
Get Your Tickets Early!
Registration is now open for RuralX17! Early bird pricing is available until June 23, so be sure to take advantage of the ticket savings and get it on your calendar now. RuralX17 will be held July 18-19, 2017 at the Dakota Events Center in Aberdeen, South Dakota. Our website is full of event information about this year’s dynamic speakers, the event schedule and our Better Block Party evening social.
What They Said…
Last year’s inaugural RuralX Summit brought people together from across the region to share innovative ideas, learn about rural resources and network like never before. Here are just a few of the great things they said about the event:
Troy McQuillen, Owner McQuillen Creative and former Dakota Rising Fellow, Aberdeen
“As a former Dakota Rising Fellow, I am really interested in youth and … Read More »
Story by Carey Grosdidier, Freelance Writer
Maybe it was the timing. Maybe it was the event. Maybe it was a little bit of both.
At RuralX, we’d like to think the connection made between Angela Tewalt of Sioux Falls and Barry Zephier of Flandreau was by design. One of the main objectives of RuralX is to bring rural “thinkers and doers” together in powerful ways. While the two had met before, Angela and Barry were given the opportunity to have a deeper conversation at RuralX during an Open X forum hosted by Vince Two Eagles.
“I didn’t expect to find so many opportunities to talk about native and non-native relations at RuralX,” said Angela. “I was sensitive to the topic because of my recent work as a freelance writer, so I joined a group discussion of about 15-20 people. We had an amazing … Read More »