Startup Sunrise – Childcare Founders Q&A Recap

On June 5, the garage door was opened and an energetic crowd attended the Childcare Founders edition of Startup Sunrise at Startup Sioux Falls – a monthly gathering of entrepreneurs and the community that supports them. This event provided a platform for authentic discussions, insightful questions and answers, and a call to consider the future we want to live in by investing in children with quality education and care.

Read on to meet the speakers and see the insights from the Question and Answer time.


Local Musician: Nick Burke
Nick Burke kicked off the event with a musical performance during the social start, setting a lively and engaging tone for the morning.

Aleta Lindell – Owner at Miss Jasper’s House
Aleta Lindell shared her journey from being a babysitter to obtaining a degree in early childhood education, teaching kindergarten and first grade, and ultimately founding Miss Jasper’s House. She reflected on her 20-year journey, starting with the bold decision to quit her job, buy a house, and a van to provide childcare.

Corri Poore – Owner at Little Tykes University
Corri began his career working at a phone call center before shifting to childcare after the birth of his son. He started a home daycare more than 13 years ago driven by his desire to be part of his son’s education. His faith played a significant role in her journey, and now, with three centers open, he attributes much of his success to the catalyst role of Startup Sioux Falls.
A big thank you to Angie Iverson from SDCEO East for moderating the conversation, and to Natural Grocers for providing healthy snacks for the event!


What are some of the first steps to starting a childcare business?

Aleta: I bought a house and a van, used my network (including my realtor dad), and got help with paperwork from Tara Foley of Peace Care. Licensing for the city and state was crucial.

Corri: I made a decision that this is what I wanted to do. Despite lacking knowledge in ROI, KPIs, and Metrics, I avoided analysis paralysis and supported my household by jumping in and getting my feet wet. My wife has been an immense help.

How have you overcome some of your biggest challenges?

Corri: While opening my first few daycare locations was relatively easy, managing a 100-person location presented significant challenges, especially with nurturing employees and finding the right fit.

Aleta: Time management has been a significant challenge. I prefer being with the kids over handling bookwork or maintenance.

What could our state, city, or organizations like Startup Sioux Falls and SDCEOEast do to support you?

Aleta: Sharing ideas, lesson planning, and making referrals and connections available would be beneficial.

Corri: I’m grateful for the support received, such as an $800,000 grant for a new location. Programs that facilitate entrepreneur networking are crucial. We need to view crises as opportunities for growth.

What are some best practices for starting businesses?

Corri: Communicate clearly and take action despite fear of mistakes. Being unapologetic about your values and expectations transforms ideas into successful businesses.

Aleta: Have passion and make sure your work is worthwhile. Everyone has a role, and fulfilling it where you’re called to do so is essential.

What would you say to those interested in the childcare business?

Corri: If you are good at something, pursue it without regret. Take the leap and trust that you’ll figure it out along the way.

Aleta: Childcare can change lives profoundly. Go out there and make a positive impact.


What is one solution on a large scale that would be helpful if there was no red tape?

Corri: Allow more home daycares to be licensed for larger groups, which would create more childcare opportunities.

Aleta: Advocacy is crucial for our industry.

Why should people care about the childcare crisis/opportunity?

Corri: To maintain our city’s growth and support our blue-collar community, affordable childcare is essential.

Aleta: Investing in children shapes the future. We can create the world we desire by how we invest in our kids.


Join us for one of the best monthly entrepreneurial gatherings in Sioux Falls. Reserve your free seat at our next Startup Sunrise – Software Founders, scheduled for August 7, from 8-9:15 am.

Nate B: “This event combines business and ideas. It’s a low-barrier entry point where people share information and resources. I met 3-5 new people just this morning, which doesn’t happen as often anymore. I was surprised at how many new residents came eager to get involved and meet people.”



We’d like to thank our Builder Level Sponsors for making this event possible: Boyce Law Firm, Bruce Watley (USF Entrepreneurial Studies Program), Eide Bailly, First Bank & Trust, First National Bank in Sioux Falls, First PREMIER Bank, Homegrown Capital, MarketBeat, Midwest Employee Benefits, Sanford Health Plan, SDSU Ness School of Management & Economics, Tiger29, Voyage Federal Credit Union