Meet the Industry Outreach & Development Team

The Industry Outreach & Development team’s core function is to provide support and assistance to the communities and businesses within the tourism industry. This team can provide information about cooperative programs, marketing campaigns, consumer trends and marketing research. In addition, they are responsible for organizing industry outreach events and assisting communities with destination development initiatives within the four key niche areas of agri-tourism, sports tourism, outdoor adventure tourism and tribal tourism.

Industry Outreach, Development & Research Team

The Industry Outreach, Development and Research team is responsible for providing support and assistance to the communities and businesses within the South Dakota tourism industry. This team proactively travels the state to provide industry members with information about cooperative programs, marketing campaigns, consumer trends, marketing research and the latest updates from the Department of Tourism. They make it their goal to help industry members plug into the department as much as possible.

In addition, the team is responsible for organizing industry outreach events such as the annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism. They assist communities with destination development initiatives within the four key niche areas of agritourism, sports tourism, outdoor adventure tourism and tribal tourism. The team also oversees the state’s Interstate welcome centers and the hiring and training of the seasonal staff who work in them. Finally, the team is engaged in consumer research that assists the marketing team as they make decisions about target audiences and markets. The team also oversees the annual economic impact studies that demonstrate tourism’s impact on South Dakota’s economy.

Kirk Hulstein
Kirk Hulstein
Industry Outreach, Development & Research Director
  • Primary industry point of contact
  • Direct outreach and development initiatives
  • Industry training content and programs
  • Industry performance and reporting
  • Oversee industry research and assessment
Kirk Hulstein
Industry Outreach, Development & Research Director
Calvin Bloemendaal
Calvin Bloemendaal
Industry Outreach & Development Representative
  • Regional liaison (northeastern and southeastern regions)
  • Community visits
  • Training and professional development webinars
  • Coordination of industry training workshops
  • Co-op program promotion
  • Product development strategy and facilitation
Calvin Bloemendaal
Industry Outreach & Development Representative
Bailey Carlsen
Bailey Carlsen
Industry Training, Special Events, and Legislative Relations Manager
  • Hospitality training programs
  • National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW) campaign and outreach
  • Industry outreach events and initiatives
  • Annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism
  • Legislative outreach and relations program
Bailey Carlsen
Industry Training, Special Events, and Legislative Relations Manager
Jacey Ellsworth
Jacey Ellsworth
Industry Outreach & Development Representative
  • Regional liaison (western and central regions)
  • Community visits
  • Online hospitality training
  • Coordination of industry training workshops
  • Co-op program promotion
  • Product development strategy and facilitation
Jacey Ellsworth
Industry Outreach & Development Representative
Photo of Nate Johnson
Nate Johnson
Welcome Center Manager
  • Interstate Welcome Centers
  • Hiring and personnel management
  • Management of daily Welcome Center operations
  • Welcome Center employee training and familiarization tour coordination
  • Welcome Center sales and co-op programs
  • Welcome Center exhibits and visitor experience
Nate Johnson
Welcome Center Manager
Theresa Tople
Teresa Tople
Administrative Assistant & Project Specialist
  • Great Face and Great Place hospitality recognition programs
  • Industry database management
  • Administrative assistant and receptionist
Teresa Tople
Administrative Assistant & Project Specialist