Key Personnel

John Austin

Business Development Director

John oversees a team of business development specialists who are responsible for retention and expansion of South Dakota’s existing businesses and recruitment of new business opportunities out-of-state. Additionally, John and his team work closely with local economic development offices to facilitate local projects.


Joe Fiala

Community Development Director

Joe oversees a statewide community development strategy that will assist local economic development corporations in positioning their community or region for economic growth.


Cassie Stoeser

Finance Director

Cassie’s responsibilities include managing the various loan portfolios, other finance programs and finance staff.


Mary Lehecka Nelson

Marketing and PR Director

Mary coordinates and implements the office marketing efforts. She works closely with development directors, advertising agencies and staff to ensure effective internal and external communications.


Travis Dovre

Director of Administration

Travis provides direction, coordination and supervision to meet the fiscal, human resources and office management need of the department.


South Dakota Governor’s Office of Economic Development

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