The Sioux Falls Rising Leaders event is an opportunity for high school students to learn about their community, engage with local professionals and get excited about career opportunities in Sioux Falls.  

High school sophomores, juniors and seniors are welcome to apply to our one-day event, which is currently suspended/postponed in Sioux Falls, in which they’ll hear from business owners, young professionals and people who are passionate about making Sioux Falls a great place to live and work.  

We are looking for students who are self-motivated and community-focused. This is an opportunity for you to network with movers and shakers in Sioux Falls, explore career options and develop your leadership skills. 


Sioux Falls Rising Leaders was started by the 2018-2019 Leadership Sioux Falls class. The goal was to create a one-day event based on the principles of the Chamber of Commerce’s Evan C. Nolte Leadership Sioux Falls program, which is designed to meet the community´s need for active participation of informed and dedicated community leaders. 

We wanted to start fostering that participation in leaders of a younger age.  

Sioux Falls Rising Leaders allows high school sophomores, juniors and seniors to connect with city, community and business leaders. Students selected for the program will have a chance to learn, ask questions and, hopefully, will leave with a better appreciation for the Sioux Falls community and those who make it run.  

You might be an artist who would like to introduce yourself and your work here or maybe you’re a business with a mission to describe.


Who should apply?

Rising Leaders is open to all high school sophomore, juniors and seniors in the Sioux Falls metro area. We welcome students from public, private and homeschool settings and from school districts including: Sioux Falls, Tea, Brandon Valley, Harrisburg, West Central, Lennox and Dell Rapids. 

What are the details of the event? 

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Sioux Falls Rising Leaders event has been suspended/postponed until further notice. We will update the area school districts, this website and our social media accounts when as soon as we possibly can with a new date for the event.

Click here to apply!

SFRL 2019 Event

The 2019 Rising Leaders event featured a variety of talented speakers sharing insight on topics important to the Sioux Falls community. 

Event participants learned more about how the city operates and how local government works in a panel featuring city employees including: Director of Public Works Mark Cotter, Mayoral Chief of Staff Erica Beck, Deputy Chief of Staff T.J. Nelson and City Councilor Christine Erickson. 

The Rising Leaders class also got to hear about Lemonly CEO John Meyer’s path to becoming an entrepreneur, and they heard an inspirational talk from SDSU Football Coach John Stiegelmeier. 

Participants came with thoughtful questions and left with insightful answers. They also had a chance to interact with both each other and members of the Leadership Sioux Falls class, who also represent a wide variety of industries in the community. 

Overall, the event succeeded in its goal of informing and shaping future leaders. We hope we can continue that legacy in 2020 and beyond.


“The speakers were very informational and covered a wide range of topics.”

SFRL 2019 Grad

“I loved the time that I had at the Sanford House … I learned a lot and will remember the experiences that I had.” 

SFRL 2019 Grad

“I really enjoyed Rising Leaders! I got a lot out of it and will take all that I have learned with me through my future career.” 

SFRL 2019 Grad

“I thought it was really fun, and I want to come again!”

SFRL 2019 Grad