Please join us at Morningside Community Center at 7:00 pm Tuesday, February 25th, 2020.

Meeting Agenda

  • Collecting first half of league fees.
    • $500 due for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday teams.
    • $600 due for Thursday teams.
  • Updates on the league.
  • Finalized league placements.
  • Board member vote.
    • Managers are allowed one vote per team. A team representative can be sent to vote.
  • Closing the meeting.

Please send a representative for your team if you cannot make it!
Please check out each of the candidates below.

Jordan Gillis

Hello, Fellow Managers –

I’m writing today to announce my run for re-election for a league board position in 2020.

Two years ago, I was hired to take over the league website with the objective of enhancing the league’s ability to share information, improving communication, and innovating league administration. Two months after being brought into the fold, you helped me get elected to the board where I could take those objectives beyond just the website and apply them to the whole league.

I set out with goals to modernize the league. I helped create and enforce competitive balance movement within the lower division. I worked to promote league communication and create a transparent atmosphere. I helped open up our financial books to allow people to see where league money gets spent. I feel very confident that I have accomplished the smaller goals I held back in 2018.

Today, I have wide-reaching goals. Improvements have been made in the league’s communication, but there’s much room for improvement when it comes to communicating with the general public. Marketing the league to get the attention of those who are not in the league is one way I believe we can grow the league. We need to develop materials and packages to support managers new and old. Every year, the work of the manager is getting harder. We need to offer managers more information to recruit players and to lighten the load of gathering league fees, and we need to create methods of thanking league managers for their time.

Finally, while the league presents a schedule that allows teams to show up, play, and go home, what we as a league could add to the fold includes efforts to build a better softball community as a whole for players, managers and fans. I’m eager to share my plans to create events and touch-points during the season as well as in the off-season to share information and gather the greater softball community together in a meaningful way for all.

I’d appreciate your support next week. Please attend the meeting, which is scheduled for next Tuesday night, 7pm at the Morningside Community Center.

Jordan Gillis

Joshua Folkerts

I was born and raised in Watertown, SD.  That is where my softball infatuation came from.  I started playing softball for a team called OSI.  OSI was a business I used to work for that sold office products and we just played to play.  How I believe softball should be.  After graduating college in 2002, I got back into the game with friends, so I joined a team named Woody’s.  This is where the competition itch got the best of me.  I played with Woody’s for 3 years and from there, I moved to Harrisburg SD.  I wanted to play small town ball, so I traveled from Harrisburg to Watertown every Tuesday night to play for Woody’s until an injury sidelined me for a year.

Upon recovery, I joined a Tuesday night Sioux Falls league team called Fresh Horses.  This was where softball became an obsession of mine.  I discovered what competitive Sioux Falls softball was and level you can strive for.  After 2 years on Fresh Horses I got with a core group of guys and started a team called Ground Zero.  Ground Zero was a thrown together team that competed in a wide variety of tournaments in which we won some and lost some.  We ended up winning a South Dakota State D championship with a bunch of good dudes.  That is what I believe softball is all out about.  Playing softball and having fun on and off the field.  Upon the state win, I played with Hazardous which took a 2nd place finish in Nationals in the E division.

I am choosing to run for the Sioux Falls Board for Men’s Slow Pitch to try to keep the local softball community inspired and moving forward in the right direction.  As a local business owner, I have learned to keep a steady process moving positively, rebounding from mistakes, and keeping people happy despite making tough decisions.  It will be a group effort.  I plan to bring my good communication skills to the table.  I believe you must be transparent with people to keep the unexpected surprises down to a minimum along with being a good ear for people to confabulate with you.  Long story short, I promise to be a fair person. I’ll make it a priority to listen to requests while providing a clear plan, so league expectations are met.

I think I can help with bringing a younger point of view to the Sioux Falls softball league. With that leadership and someone who stands by his word and will do what I believe is best for the league as a whole.  I want this league to be around and healthy for my kids to play.  Over the years, I have watched teams, players and managers fade from the softball community due to stale policies and decisions.  Over the past year, a lot of big changes have happened, and I see the potential in fueling that positive change moving forward.  I believe the league is moving in the right direction and I want to pour my energy to ensure the trajectory of the league evolves upwards.

Anyone that knows me sees that I am far from lazy or un-committed. I am driven. When I say I am going to do something, I follow through and do it.  I want to be held accountable and plan to exceed expectations. This should be the minimum standard for what it takes to be on the league board and I plan to exceed those expectations.

Steve Riswold

League Managers:

I would like your support for re-election as a board member for Sioux Falls Men’s Slow Pitch.  I bring experience and knowledge from a local, state and national perspective.

I’ve been involved in the league since 1989 as an umpire, umpire-in-chief and as a board member.  I was the league umpire-in-chief from 2002-2008.  I have been on the board since 2011.  I still work closely with the umpires in our league and help with conflict resolution.

I have served as the USA of South Dakota Umpire-in Chief since 2009 and on USA Softball’s National Umpire Staff since 2010, as the Region 8 UIC.  I represent the umpires from South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota, Metro Minneapolis and Wisconsin.  I have instructed in 28 National Umpire Schools all over the USA.  I had the privilege in 2016 to teach umpire schools in Germany and Italy for the US Army.

I have served as the Umpire-in-Chief for 27 USA Softball National Championships all over the country, including the Men’s Super and Men’s Class A Slow Pitch last year in Nashville and the Men’s Class C Slow Pitch in Red Wing, Minnesota last year.

On the national scene, I serve as one of about 300 council members who vote on rule and code changes for USA Softball.  I keep our league in mind as I discuss and vote on improvements for USA Softball.

I have a good feel for what’s going on with men’s slow pitch around the country.  Numbers are dwindling quickly on the coasts, especially in league play.  We have been able to buck that trend in the Midwest and more specifically in the Dakotas and Minnesota.  However, we need to do all the we can to retain the teams we have playing in our league as we try to market our league and recruit new teams and players.  We were thrilled to work with Jack Kolbeck a few years ago to start our 50 and over league.  This has proven to be one of our greatest growth opportunities, reaching out to former players in our league.

On game nights, I have been the Tuesday night board member for most of my time on the board.  I am there early and available to check on field conditions and answer questions.  I often am running to Harmodon on other afternoons to check field conditions, as my schedule is more open.  With new lines of communication open, we look forward to providing more timely information on days when we have weather conditions to deal with.

I also bring a historical perspective to our league when we occasionally discuss why some of our rules or by-laws were implemented.  I want to continue to work with our league managers to develop the best experience for all of our participants.

Again, I would appreciate your support Tuesday night and I look forward to working with you in the future.

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