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Noem Announces GOED Appointment

For Immediate Release

December 6, 2018

Contact: Kristin Wileman


Noem Announces GOED Appointment


PIERRE, S.D. – Governor-elect Kristi Noem today announced that Steve Westra will serve in her administration as Commissioner of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED).


“South Dakota does a lot of things right, but our economy needs a renewed focus,” said Noem. “Steve Westra's real-world experience in the private sector will be invaluable as we look to expand job opportunities and recruit new businesses by developing our workforce and cutting unnecessary regulations. Steve has helped create and grow businesses, he knows what it takes and the challenges that must be overcome. Most importantly, Steve is a servant for people, and I know he’ll work hard to produce results that kickstart our economy and bolster our industries and businesses, families and communities.”


“I firmly believe South Dakota has the right low-tax, low-regulation formula to be a national economic leader,” said Westra. “I couldn’t be more honored to partner with Governor-elect Noem to make that possibility a reality.”


Westra currently serves as Chief Operating Officer of Hegg Companies, Inc. In this position, Westra has shown an ability to develop strategies that bring capital investment to job-creating projects in South Dakota. What’s more, Westra has spearheaded various public/private partnerships and has extensive experience in working with both in-state and out-of-state private equity and debt providers for the purpose of creating businesses in South Dakota.  


Furthermore, Westra has been recognized as a leader in attracting out-of-state businesses to South Dakota for meetings and events, and he currently serves on the State Tourism Advisory Board.


Westra served in the State House of Representatives from 2013-2016, including two years as assistant majority leader. He lives in Sioux Falls with his wife, Julie, and three children, Graham, Griffen, and Elle.


Westra will continue serving on Noem’s transition team until January 5, 2019.