About

SUSF stacked logo@2x

Mission

Startup Sioux Falls empowers founders and ignites innovation.

We are an ecosystem organization that empowers founders by offering resources to network, launch, and grow their ventures. We ignite innovation by being a thought leader in the state to bring new ideas to life and offer better support for founders.

If you have ever aspired to launch something of your own, we want you to join our community. Start with Startup Sioux Falls.

Values

Inclusive

We welcome all entrepreneurs.

Innovative

We solve problems through testing and collaboration.

Collaborative

We work with our community and bring people together.

Authentic

We are honest, even when it is hard.

Curious

We make the possible probable by stepping into the unknown.

Vision

We will serve 100,000 people and help 100 founders grow by 2034.

In the exciting world of startups, founders exemplify adaptability, innovation, and resilience. They deserve an ecosystem that not only recognizes but actively supports their journey of bringing ideas to life.

At Startup Sioux Falls, we're deeply connected to our community. Our mission is to empower founders and ignite innovation, making entrepreneurship accessible to everyone who dreams of launching something. As we move forward, we aim to grow our community, have programming for the entire founder's journey, and become the go-to connector of the regional startup scene—a dream envisioned by our community's leaders nearly two decades ago.

Just like the resilient founders we support, our community is always changing. We actively engage in the changes shaping our city's future. Being in downtown Sioux Falls shows our commitment to working with others toward the common goal of shaping our city's future.

We're your partners in building a strong foundation for your venture. Will you join us in this exciting journey?

Start with Startup Sioux Falls.

History

Like all good stories, ours began with an idea. What could happen if a city in the heart of the Great Plains decided to chart its own course into the future? In 1999, it was this idea that led Forward Sioux Falls to form a committee focused on tech-based economic development in the city of Sioux Falls. Just three years later, the Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce and Development Foundation opened the doors to the South Dakota Technology Business Center (SDTBC). A bold vision for the future of our state, the SDTBC offered programming and physical space to incubate and accelerate high-growth tech businesses in South Dakota’s largest city.

We didn’t stop there. In 2016, we asked ourselves what more we could do. We realized innovation isn’t exclusive to tech. Inspiration isn’t exclusive to high-growth businesses. We were here to support entrepreneurs at all stages. We needed to be more. With that, we evolved to become the Zeal Center for Entrepreneurship—the physical hub for Sioux Falls’ budding startup scene.

In 2019, the Zeal Center merged with Startup Sioux Falls, a startup community organization founded by Matt Paulson. This merger created the organization we know as Startup Sioux falls today, which provides real resources to those who dare to chart their own course. We empower founders in our community as they work diligently to launch and grow their ventures. We are more than a building; we are an ecosystem organization. We are a collective of doers, thinkers, and innovators working tirelessly to support those who dare to dream.

The Rest of the Story

Rebrand and Move Downtown

Where we are now

Startup Sioux Falls Staff

BRIENNE MANER, President

(605) 275-8012
[email protected]

AMOS BUELOW, Community Coordinator

(605) 275-8008
[email protected]

JEFF HAYWARD, Program Manager

(605) 271-3502
[email protected]

SARA LUM, Vice President

(605) 275-8022
[email protected]

EMMA OLSON, Facility & Admin Specialist

(605) 275-8014
[email protected]

Startup Sioux Falls Board of Directors

PAUL TSCHETTER
Chair

Partner
Boyce Law Firm, LLP

JOHN MEYER
Vice Chair

Founder
Leadmore

AMY MOORE
Secretary

Co-Founder & Executive Creative Director
Lemonly

KEITH SEVERSON
Treasurer

Development Foundation

KARLA SANTI
Past Chair

CEO & Founding Partner
Blend Interactive

JEFF GRIFFIN

President & CEO
Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce

JASON HERRBOLDT

Chief Banking Officer
First Bank & Trust

MIKE LYNCH

Director of Investor Relations
Forward Sioux Falls

TONY NOUR

Senior Vice President, Relationship Banking
First PREMIER Bank/PREMIER Bankcard

ARIN GONSETH

VP Finance
MarketBeat

CHEZ TSCHETTER

CIO, CTO
Solarity

SCOTT PETERSEN

CoFounder
HIRECLICK

CINDY PETERSON

Founder & CEO
Maximizing Excellence, LLC

KIM BURMA

Senior Advertising Agency Account Executive
Midco

Community Builders

ANDREA VAN ESSEN

Andrea Van Essen

CARLEY KEWLEY

Hey Carl!

KRISTI WIRE

Wire Design Company

MAUREEN OHM

MarketBeat

MATT PAULSON

MarketBeat

NGOC THACH

Mix Maker

PETE KLEINJAN

Tiger 29

REBECCA MCKEEVER

MarketBeat

Rebekah Van Maanen

REBEKAH VAN MAANEN

MarketBeat

TANNA SOUKUP

Strategie, LLC

VINCE DANH

4Front Studios

Learn more in our Annual Report

Startup Sioux Falls Sponsors

These organizations provide financial support for Startup Sioux falls