2013 Women of Excellence Winners

For their dedication to the community, service to others and commitments to helping women achieve their goals, three women were honored as Women of Excellence at the annual SME Women in Business® event.  The 2013 winners are:

2013 Winners - SME Women of ExcellenceKris Frerk – Human Resources Supervisor at Alliance Communications, received the Women of Excellence Award in Women Working through the Decades category.  Frerk joined Alliance Communications in 1982 as a customer service representative, she advanced to her current supervisory position. In addition to her success at work, she founded the Garretson Food Pantry, Garretson’s Back Pack Program, opened the Treasure Chest, a nonprofit business that uses its profits to help others. She also has done many fundraising events, served on the Garretson School Board, Commercial Club and coordinates many other local events. She is a valued colleague, communitymember, wife and mother.

2013 Winners - SME Women of ExcellenceLinda Hagedorn, received the Women of Excellence Award in the Women Mentoring Women category. Hagedorn has been a mentor to many. She started her career with Tupperware in 1960, she was asked in 1976 to take a Distributorship and mentored sales people in South Dakota, Iowa, North Dakota and Minnesota. She also was asked in 1997 to continue her mentorship in India. She selected, recruited, trained and set up Tupperware Dealerships in India for ten months. In addition to these accomplishments, Hagedorn began the “Journey to Bethlehem”, participated as a Sunday school teacher, La Sertoma Club President, Sertoma Club President, Sertoma Duck Race Committee, Sioux Empire Character Counts board, many speech engagements and for several years coordinated the SME Style Show.  Hagedorn is married with five children, two step children, sixteen grandchildren and eleven great grandchildren.

2013 Winners - SME Women of ExcellenceKayla Nielsen – Certified Nurse Practitioner at Viborg Medical Clinic, received the Women of Excellence Award in Young Women of Excellence category.  Nielsen has developed a strong practice in Viborg. She has mentored graduate nurses in the emergency department and medical surgical departments. She has been instrumental in implementing education and validation systems for the nursing department. She acts as the Viborg Ambulance medical liaison, furthers her education and skills through Advanced Trauma Life, Advanced Cardiac Life Support and other CPN classes. She volunteers in her community raising money for Toys for Tots, school supplies, served on the committee for Wakonda’s anniversary planning as co-editor for a remembrance book and Children’s Carnival committee. She is a respected young professional in her community and among her peers.

A complete afternoon of seminars, trade fair and demonstrations was conducted before the evening dinner and awards show which featured Keynote Speaker Elizabeth Smart.  The SME Women of Excellence is sponsored by Verizon Wireless World.