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Each year at the annual South Dakota Governor's Conference on Tourism,
awards are presented to outstanding members or organizations that have
contributed to the state's visitor
- The Ben Black Elk Award
is presented to an individual or individuals whose enduring devotion dramatically
affects South Dakota's visitor industry. The 2013 award winner was
Michelle Lintz (Rapid City).
- The A.H. Pankow Award honors a member of
the print or broadcast media or public relations industry who has shown superior interest in
and coverage of the South Dakota visitor industry. The 2013 award winner
was Chad Coppess (Pierre).
- The George S. Mickelson Great Service Award honors a
business or organization that promotes hospitality and strives to keep it a leading
tourism marketing tool. The winners of the two awards for 2012 were
South Dakota State Parks (statewide) and Holiday Inn City Centre (Sioux Falls).
- The Excellence in Tourism Innovation Award honors an industry partner for its innovative thinking in marketing or special promotion. This award will be presented by the Department of Tourism on a case-by-case basis. The inaugural recepient of the award was the
Rapid City Convention and Visitors Bureau.
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