Greater Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce

Chamber task force supports military interests

By resolution in 2007, the Greater Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce launched the Military Task Force to advocate for the future of Joe Foss Field, the South Dakota Air National Guard and other military units in the Sioux Falls area.

The Task Force centers its work to achieve its mission around four objectives:

  • To educate the Sioux Falls’ community about the military presence in Sioux Falls, informing the community of the economic impact and leadership role of the local military.
  • To recruit community leaders and community support to influence the federal government to continue the present military missions in Sioux Falls.
  • To recruit community leaders and community support to replace military missions when they are discontinued with new and perhaps upgraded military missions.
  • To provide community support to military personnel and their families and promote the economic and leadership value that the military provides in Sioux Falls.

Chaired by (Ret.) Gen. R.J. Clifft and (Ret.) Gen. Ron Mielke, the Task Force stays well connected with the congressional delegation, state leadership, South Dakota Air National Guard leadership, the Sioux Falls Airport Authority, National Air Force and Air National Guard leadership.

Also serving on the Task Force are chair of the board of directors for both the Chamber and Development Foundation, as well as their respective presidents/CEOs, chair of the Forward Sioux Falls Joint Venture Management Committee, as well as at-large members. Ex-officio members include the mayor of Sioux Falls, the chair of the Minnehaha County Commission, the chair of the Sioux Falls Regional Airport Authority, state directors for South Dakota’s U.S. senators and representative in the House of Representatives and the Chamber’s chair of the Military and Veterans Affairs Committee.

Over the years, the Task Force has held strategy sessions and presentations with elected officials and community leaders to advocate for F-35 basing, facilitated work to secure the South Dakota Army National Guard Readiness Center and safe placement of building projects in and around flight patterns for the Air Guard.

The economic impact from the military units in the Sioux Falls area is profound, approaching $84 million for the Air Guard in FY 2023, which includes more than 1,100 personnel at Joe Foss Field in support of the F-16C Block 40 aircraft.

The Chamber will continue to strongly support our military as the positive effect on the business community remains strong.