These amazing people have enthusiastically come together to serve the mission of Simon Says Give with their individual passions and talents. Because of them, there are tens of thousands of children that benefit from Simon Says Give. We love our board! Please take time to meet them.
Meet the South Dakota Team
MEET THE SOUTH DAKOTA TEAM
Founder & President Simon Says Give SD
Nolan started the first official chapter of Simon Says Give when he was nine. After meeting Mandi, he decided he wanted to help kids too and from there Simon Says Give South Dakota was born. The chapter provides hundreds of birthdays annually to kids in need across South Dakota. Their passion project is Make a Meal, Take a Meal where one of the kid leaders teaches a group of other kids how to make a healthy meal or snack. The organization then provides them the same ingredients to take home and make for their family.
Nolan is currently attending Lincoln High School in Sioux Falls. He enjoys gaming, building Legos, puzzles and spending time with his mom, dad, two brothers, sister and his dog and cat. He hopes to attend college in South Dakota and is contemplating majors in Engineering or Architecture. Nolan says, “The rewards of helping less fortunate kids are why I’m involved with Simon Says Give. It’s a great feeling to be able to help someone else.”
Jennifer is a goal-oriented leader and seasoned communicator with a wealth of experience in strategic marketing and public relations. Her expertise spans diverse industries in B2B and B2C – technology, healthcare, finance, government, retail and more. She utilizes problem solving and leadership skills to ensure stakeholder satisfaction and success. Throughout her career, she has managed and led business teams to meet and exceed client goals and expectations – every time. As a strategic thinker, Jen thrives on building amazing campaigns and comprehensive marketing strategies that generate BIG wins for clients.
Her philosophy: Relationships matter. Be a great partner, leader and friend.
Jennifer is on both the Minnesota and South Dakota Adult Boards of Simon Says Give. She enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with her family. Jennifer has a bachelor of arts in Psychology from South Dakota State University. She shares, “What I love most about my involvement with Simon Says Give is working with the Kid Advisory Board. These kids have amazing ideas, my role is to help them see them to fruition.”
Keira is a veteran of the Public Relations/Media Relations industry both in the Hispanic and U.S. general markets. For almost two decades, she has worked to garner media coverage and exposure for a wide variety of clients in the B2B and B2C space – among them, Bigote de Leche, the Hispanic version of the ‘got milk?’ campaign, NatGeo Mundo, Colgate, Centers for Disease Control, King’s Hawaiian and Liberty Tax Service. She has established relationships with many reporters and producers in the broadcast industry such as Fox Business Network, TheStreet.com, and multiple local affiliates nationwide. Keira got her start in the media industry as an intern at CBS News Productions helping researching topics for shows like Biography: This Week and 20th Century with Mike Wallace.
Fully bilingual in English and Spanish, she has a BA and an MS in Communications from the College of New Rochelle. She is currently a Senior Media Strategist at TallGrass Public Relations.
When Taylor Templeton was adopted at the age of 7 years old as an orphan from Bangkok, Thailand, he got to celebrate his first birthday at the age of 8. Taylor never had a birthday party for the first 7 years of his life. So once Taylor learned about the Simon Says Give organization this past year, he knew this is one way he can make a difference in the Sioux Falls Community by joining the board and sharing his story. Volunteering and giving back to the community is one of Taylor’s passion in life, and is excited to be part of the Simon Says Give Organization in Sioux Falls.
Taylor has 12 years of retail management experience for Big Box Stores and specialities stores. Taylor has managed high volume stores with Target, Kohl’s in the Chicago market, Omaha, and SD where he mainly focused on customer service, sales, operations, and human resources. In 2019, Taylor got his Broker Associate license and started a part time job where he helps people buy and sell homes.He currently works for Keller Williams Realty.
Sarah Jennings is a Regional Vice President for AARP working with nine Central states to deliver information, experiences and connections to the 50+ population and to help ensure every individual can live their best life as they age. Prior to serving as a Regional Vice President, Sarah was the AARP State Director for South Dakota for 10 years. Before joining AARP, Sarah spent 10 years on Capitol Hill serving as a Senior Legislative Assistant for Senator Tim Johnson (SD) and Chief of Staff to Senator Mark Dayton (MN). Sarah attended Wellesley College and lives in Sioux Falls, SD with her husband, 2 children and pandemic puppy, Milo.
Sheila is an image and impression management expert driven to empower corporate professionals across the globe in growing their strategic visibility. Her exceptional talent benefits executives and notables at any level in polishing all facets of their brand – appearance, attire, behavior, body language, and more – to power brand-aligned personal presence and communication style. From professional modeling that includes runway, print, and TV commercial work to a career in brand management, Sheila draws from over two decades of experience when speaking and producing in the world of impression management. She also has nonprofit board experience. She served six years on the International Board of Cosmopolitan International and two years on their Foundation Board, a service club that raises money for diabetes education and research. In 2013-14 she was elected as the International President, being only the third woman to hold that office.
Andrew is the Office Assistant for the Tim Allex Realty Group of Keller Williams Realty Sioux Falls. Prior positions include: HRIS Specialist at TAK Communications in Sioux Falls, SD, Scholarship Coordinator for the South Dakota State University Foundation in Brookings, SD, and Human Resources Administrative Assistant at Home Federal Bank in Sioux Falls, SD. He has a passion for supporting and helping teams and organizations so when a colleague approached him about Simon Says Give and what the organization does, he knew it would be a great fit. After working at the SDSU Foundation where there were daily examples of giving back, he knows how much of an impact giving back means to recipients. Andrew currently resides in Sioux Falls with his twin brother, Matt, and holds two Associate’s degrees: one in Human Resources and one in Management. In his spare time, he enjoys going to theatrical performances of touring Broadway shows at the Washington Pavilion or community theatre productions at the historic Orpheum Theatre in downtown Sioux Falls as well as volunteering his time helping with the community theatre productions at the Orpheum and Olde Towne Dinner Theatre in Worthing, SD.
SD Kid Board
SD KID BOARD
We are currently accepting applications for our next Kid Advisory Board.
Kid advisory board
Jonah has been on the South Dakota Kid Advisory Board since it’s inception. He leads our Make a Meal, Take a Meal program, teaching kids in need how to make a healthy meal, then sending them home with the same ingredients so they can put into practice what they’ve learned. Jonah also helps with our Birthday Closet program and assists with fulfilling hundreds of birthday party requests each year. Jonah speaks publicly about his experience with Simon Says Give. He was the winner of the August 2016 Sioux Falls Soup non-profit pitch competition.
Jonah attends Lincoln High School and works part time as a manager at a local sandwich shop. He enjoys fishing, gaming and hanging out with friends. Jonah says, “Simon Says Give has allowed me to do things I wouldn’t necessarily have the opportunity to do, like speaking in front of large audiences and leading events. I’ve learned a lot and been able to contribute to the organization.”
Kid advisory board
Ethan was just six years old when his brother began Simon Says Give South Dakota and he’s been helping ever since. He works alongside the other Kid Board Members to ensure our Birthday Closets stay fully stocked. He helps with fundraising and marketing. Ethan was so inspired by his work with Simon Says Give, he started his own passion project, Healing Hearts, raising several hundred dollars on his own to buy toys and games for children in the hospital.
Ethan attends Patrick Henry Middle School. He’s an avid gamer and enjoys swimming, reading, cooking and spending time with his friends and pets. He shares, “Simon Says Give is all about helping other kids. It makes me feel great when I can do something positive for another person.”