News and Updates
2019 SDSPLS 36th Annual Convention
January 9, 10 and 11, 2019
Arrowwood Cedar Shore Resort, Chamberlain, SD

From our Executive Director   (May 2018)
It has been a few years since I have written an Executive Director’s Report for the newsletter and as my time is limited this is one of my last opportunities.

I hope that everyone is busy with summer projects.  Remember to be safe out there – stay hydrated - wear your sunscreen – use your insect repellent – wear your safety vests and hard hats – set up your traffic signs when working in or near the right-of-way – be observant of your surroundings – and be careful out there.

There are several items from the past few months that deserve some comment and update.  I will start with DPC.  Fresh off the heels of a major victory in defeating the Temporary Licensure Compact which would have significantly impacted how South Dakota provides licensure opportunities for registrants from other states for land surveyors and other design professionals we had some unfortunate news.  It appears that SDES and ACEC decided to not renew their contract with their Executive Director (Gail Boddicker).  Gail also served as the Executive Director for DPC and without the renewal of the SDES and ACEC contracts she was unable to stay on as the Executive Director for DPC.  This leaves DPC in search of a new Executive Director as well.  We are uncertain if an offer of service might be forthcoming when SDES and ACEC (possibly even SDSPLS) select their new Executive Directors or whether someone else will step forward to help manage this very important entity.  I personally have no doubt that without DPC and those that serve in that organization (Don Jacobson in particular) that we would not have been successful in opposing the legislation proposed and strongly promoted by Governor Daugaard.  DPC provided its member organizations with administrative assistance and a central point of contact for the coordination of efforts and responses by our individual organizations and members in addition to their regular services and watchdog duties.  I hope that in the coming months those that are still serving on DPC will find a way forward with new leadership.  If you are interested in assisting or serving with DPC please either contact Don Jacobson or an SDSPLS Board member.

Plans are under way for the 2019 convention.  Our feature speaker will be John Matonich from Wisconsin.  John is a former NSPS President and someone that I have had the pleasure of meeting.  He spoke to the Executive Director’s group in Phoenix several years ago.  He is an enthusiastic and personable speaker and I think (and hope) that you will really enjoy his presentations.

Based in part on some of the comments from the questionnaires that you completed this year at convention and some individual suggestions as well – your Board of Directors is working on a few changes that will hopefully enhance the convention experience for everyone.  We will be encouraging entries for the NSPS 
Map/Plat Contest so keep that in mind as you complete drawings for your projects this year.  Look for more information in the November newsletter and with your convention registrations.

Probably the most important item of the past few months has been the search for a new Executive Director.  The position was opened late last year and there were four very qualified applicants.  The Board of Directors selected one of the applicants and will be offering the position and a contract for services.  If accepted they will be able to introduce you to their selection in the August newsletter – so stay tuned.  The plans are for the new candidate to come on board in early October and work with me through the 2019 convention.  That will provide a bit of time to learn more about the workings of the organization, its members and the Board of Directors.  The training period will also include a newsletter, membership renewals, and the details of putting the convention together and working through an actual convention.    

In addition to those items, discussions and work are continuing on the Corner Record project (thanks largely to the efforts of Linda Foster).  Dean Scott is working on some of the final modifications to the Recommended Guidelines.  The BOD is in search of a chairman for the Membership Committee if anyone is interested.  The duties are not onerous, but might include helping to welcome new members and considering ideas to help promote individual and sustaining membership.  The BOD is also in search of a Trig Star Committee Chair as Steve Thingelstad has indicated an interest in retiring.  

Speaking of Trig Star, the 2018 contest was held May 7 at the SDSM&T campus.  The winner this year had a perfect score of 100 (see page 20 for more details).  On an interesting note – the winner this year was female and half of the contestants were young women.  That is an exciting trend for a science related field.  Way to go girls!

On a closing note – please give some attention to the article on Page 16 regarding monument destruction. Although there are differences in how we monument right-of-way – the concern regarding the destruction of property corners during street and utility reconstruction projects is very real.  With every construction season we see the destruction and loss of property corners during these reconstruction projects.  The identification of property monuments prior to design and construction and the preservation of those locations (either by protecting the monuments or reestablishing lost monuments) should become a mandate for design and construction contracts.   Those of you who work for or with design firms need to introduce this topic and those of you who are PE/LS members and responsible for design projects need to step up and address this issue.

Janelle L. Finck – SDSPLS Executive Director 

South Dakota

Society of

Professional Land


PO Box 8154

Rapid City, South Dakota 57709