New executive committee to lead Development Foundation

Five tested business leaders with extensive experience serving Sioux Falls area organizations will lead the Development Foundation’s board of directors in the coming year. Named to the executive committee for 2018 are Bob Thimjon, Chairman; Jay Rasmussen, Vice Chairman; Pat Costello, Secretary; Todd Ernst, Treasurer, and Steve Statz, Past Chairman.


Thimjon serves as President and CEO of The Ramkota Companies. Until May of 2015, he also served as Chief Financial Officer for the company and related entities. He has led numerous Boards including the Sioux Falls School Board, Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce, Sioux Falls Sports Authority, Howard Wood Dakota Relays, Rotary West, Southeast Tech Housing Foundation, Junior Achievement of South Dakota and the Sioux Empire United Way. 


Rasmussen managed projects throughout the Midwest and western United States for 13 years with Taylor Ball LLC, advancing from project engineer to project management and into company leadership. Returning to the Sioux Falls area in 2004, he joined the professional construction team of Journey Group Companies and is currently Vice President of Business Development. Rasmussen has been actively involved with Sioux Empire United Way, The Banquet, Feeding South Dakota, Volunteer Sioux Falls, Downtown Rotary, AGC South Dakota, Sioux Falls Chamber, Forward Sioux Falls, Leadership Sioux Falls (class of 2006), Habitat for Humanity, STI Housing Foundation, Sioux Council Boy Scouts, and Junior Achievement.


Costello is currently Vice President of Schoeneman’s Building Materials Center, a company with a regional history since 1888. Prior to joining the staff at Schoeneman’s, Costello spent six years as the Commissioner of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and a member of Governor Dennis Daugaard’s Executive Committee. Costello brings a strong business sense to the Sioux Falls Development Foundation Board having spent more than 20 years in private business and six years working with businesses across the state and the country. An active member of the Sioux Falls community, Costello is involved in several service organizations. He was elected to the Sioux Falls City Council from 2006-2010 and served as Chairman of the City Council from 2009-2010.


Ernst is the President and founder of Ernst Capital, running the firm’s asset management business and assisting with business development, due diligence, deal structuring and managing equity portfolios. Prior to founding the firm, he was the Director of Metrics and Reporting for Freddie Mac’s corporate project portfolio, monitoring and evaluating project investment decisions which totaled between $400 million and $500 million each year. He serves as a board member for the Sioux Falls Area Community Foundation, is a member of the Sioux Falls Downtown Rotary Club and also volunteers with a number of other community organizations.


Statz is Sr. Vice President of Business Development at Avera Health. Prior to joining Avera Health, he was the Sr. Vice President of Hospital Operations at Avera McKennan and President of Tel-Drug, Inc., a mail order pharmacy business, which he sold to Cigna Companies. He is active in a number of professional organizations and community Boards and committees including First Bank and Trust Board, ZEAL Center for Entrepreneurs, South Dakota Biotech Association Board, Forward Sioux Falls, Catholic Community Foundation of Eastern South Dakota Board, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology Advisory Board, University Center Steering Committee and University of Sioux Falls MBA Advisory Board.


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