A Welcome to My Lt. Governor…..

As I travel the state, the two biggest issues people want to talk about are the huge budget deficits that confront state government and the urgent need to create good-paying careers to help keep our talented men and women in South Dakota.

Put simply, we need to fix our state’s budget mess and we have to re-focus our economic development efforts. This will require strong and unique leadership.

When I began thinking about a running mate to join me on the ticket, it was clear that were I able to find an individual who excelled in those two areas, I would have the ideal choice for South Dakota.

And with that goal, I am extremely proud to welcome Ben Arndt to the ticket. Ben embodies exactly what we need to get South Dakota moving in the right direction again. His background includes an MBA from the Kellogg School of Business and successful stints at Microsoft and Procter and Gamble.

Today, he is the COO of Bell Incorporated, one of the nation’s leading box and container manufacturers with 200 employees right here in South Dakota. Ben knows how to manage budgets during periods of economic growth and recessions. He knows how to create careers and work with leaders in industry and government.

In short, his skill set and background are exactly what we need to move South Dakota forward. Ben and his wife Sara have a five-year old son (Fletcher) and a two-year old daughter (Finley). In his spare time, Ben enjoys golf, fitness training and reading.

Please join me in welcoming Ben Arndt to our ticket.

-Scott Heidepriem

Ben Arndt Biography

June 2010

The Arndt Family

Ben Arndt is one of South Dakota’s most accomplished young business leaders.  He grew up across the border in Iowa.  The son of an ag fertilizer salesman and a home-decorator, Ben and his sister were raised in Wall Lake, Iowa.  During those formative years, Ben helped pay his way by delivering a daily newspaper for six years, working as a lifeguard and as a part-time farm laborer.

Ben’s academic career took him to Yale and then the prestigious Kellogg School (Northwestern) of Business Management.  Ben continued to earn his way through school.  To help pay for tuition and books, he supervised the university gymnasium, worked as a delivery-man and security-detail.

After undergraduate school, Ben worked his way back to the Midwest.  He climbed the corporate ladder with successful stints at two of America’s most recognized publicly-traded companies – Microsoft and Procter & Gamble.  Ben specialized in branding and new product launches at both companies.

Returning to the Midwest was a natural decision for Ben and his wife Sara (Graham) a South Dakota native.  The Arndt’s have been blessed with two children, Fletcher (5) and Finley (2).

For the past five years, Ben has been part of the senior management at Bell Incorporated of Sioux Falls, one of the nation’s leading box manufacturers.  Ben’s leadership allowed Bell to prosper even during the challenging recessions of 2008-2009.  In April of 2010, Ben became the Chief Operating Officer at Bell.

As a strong proponent of education, Ben recognized the benefits that an investment in an MBA would mean for himself and his company; beginning in 2005 he pursued his MBA from the Kellogg School and completed his degree in 2007.

Ben has served his community in a number of areas, including Leadership Sioux Falls and the Kirby Science Discovery Center.

In his spare time, Ben enjoys “roughhousing” with his kids, staying fit, reading and golf.

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2 Responses to “A Welcome to My Lt. Governor…..”

  1. Nancy Turbak Berry says:

    Congratulations and THANK YOU for your willingness to dive into such important public service! I couldn’t be happier that you’re willing to serve, and am happy for you, Scott, and the entire team. Good luck! I look forward to meeting you!

  2. Renee Renze says:

    Ben, the leadership you showed at school and in the community of Wall Lake proves that you have quality it takes to serve South Dakota. Bob and will always wish you the very best. You were the best paper boy and neighbor and friend.

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