SD Governor Noem names two new administration appointments

South Dakota News

In this image from video, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem speaks during the third night of the Republican National Convention on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020.(Courtesy of the Committee on Arrangements for the 2020 Republican National Committee via AP)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP/KCAU) — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem has announced two appointments to positions within her administration, naming new heads for the Department of Education and state housing program.

Gov. Noem is moving her senior policy advisor Tiffany Sanderson to the Department of Education, where she will replace Ben Jones as Secretary of Education. Her appointment of Sanderson goes into effect on December 9, 2020.

“Tiffany will be a great leader for the Department of Education, and a true champion for our students, educators, and schools,” said Gov. Noem.

Sanderson was focused on education policy in Noem’s office and previously worked in the Department of Education as an administrator of the state’s technical colleges.

“I’m extremely thankful to the Governor for this opportunity, and I’m excited to partner with educators as we set out to help our students in South Dakota. As a mom of a middle schooler, we can waste no time in strengthening our education system. It’s the most important work we can do for our kids and communities,” said Sanderson.

The Republican governor is also naming Lorraine Polak as the executive director of the South Dakota Housing Development Authority (SDHDA), effective January 21, 2021. She will replace Mark Lauseng, who’s retiring.

“Lorraine has a great understanding of SDHDA’s programs and all the opportunities that they present. She will be a dedicated leader and an invaluable partner as it relates to carrying out SDHDA’s mission for the people of South Dakota,” said Gov. Noem.

Polak is currently serving as the Director of Rental Housing Development with the Authority and has been working there since 1998. Before that, she worked with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

“I want to thank Governor Noem for this opportunity to continue to serve South Dakota’s citizens. Working for the Authority has been extremely rewarding, and I am honored to accept this new role. The Authority’s board of commissioners and staff along with the partner agencies we work with are dedicated to providing affordable and appropriate housing. I look forward to ensuring that dedication meets the housing needs of South Dakotans,” said Polak.


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