Gary Ellenbolt

SDPB Morning Edition Host

Since May of 2002, Gary Ellenbolt has been bringing South Dakotans the news of a new day on SDPB's Morning Edition.  Imagine the guy in the local coffee shop who knows everything, can't wait to tell everyone, and throws in a clever phrase now and again, and you'll have an idea of the typical morning on South Dakota's only statewide radio network.

Gary also works as a radio news producer, covering events of the state and stories that impact listeners.  During the fall and winter, he can be seen on SDPB Television's coverage of State High School Football and Basketball Championships.

When those aren't going on, he spends time as the radio play-by-play announcer for Briar Cliff University, an NAIA school in Sioux City, Iowa.  He has also recently been named as the voice of the Sioux City Bandits indoor football team.

Gary has also done some short fiction writing, with several stories published--including "The Question I Put Before God," "Aunt Alice and the War on Poverty," and "Eight Long Hours at Armbruster Salmon."

He holds a bachelor's degree in Radio-Television Broadcasting from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, and a Master's Degree in Contemporary Media and Journalism from the University of South Dakota.  While in graduate school, he completed his thesis, "Promotional and Marketing Campaigns of Local Radio Stations Competing with Broadcast Conglomerates."

Gary is married to Sandy--together, they are remodeling a century-old home in Centerville.  They have two sons; Preston, a  Corporal in the United States Marine Corps, and Tyler, a high school freshman.  Gary and Sandy also have a daughter-in-law, Sara (LeGros) Ellenbolt, who married Preston in December of 2014.

Ways to Connect

The Statehouse Podcast for December 7th, 2016 incudes excerpts and reaction following Governor Dennis Daugaards FY18 Budget Address .

Governor Dennis Daugaard’s FY18 Budget Address

Dec 6, 2016
Kealey Bultena

Governor Dennis Daugaard is proposing a total budget of $4.6-billion for fiscal year 2018. The state is seeing lower than expected growth in sales taxes due primarily to a downturn in the agriculture economy and lower tourism revenue over the last year. Daugaard says the state can make up for a lower than expected growth in this fiscal year with a mix of one time funds and other cost saving measures. He says the state remains in good economic standing thanks to an honestly balanced budget...

SDPB's Gary Ellenbolt spends a day in Winner to take in the tradition of a Winner Warriors high school football game. From tuning in to the local radio station, to visiting with locals and members of the football program, Ellenbolt provides a "day in the life" of Winner on football day.

Nate Wek / South Dakota Public Broadcasting

When you need to find somebody in a small town on a fall Friday night, the fastest way is to look under the lights of the local football field. At least three communities in the state have made substantial improvements to their playing areas; with one school in the southeast putting together a magnificent modern facility with the community’s help. The communities of McCook Lake, North Sioux City and Dakota Dunes make up the Dakota Valley School District. The system was carved out of the...

Statehouse Podcast: Ed Funding Passes, Transgender Bill Veto

Mar 1, 2016

The Statehouse Podcast for Match 1st, 2016 includes stories on the passage of education funding, and a veto of the transgender bathroom bill. Plus, news on debate over medical marijuana, guns in courthouses, and the sale of fetal body parts.

Statehouse Podcast: Medicaid Expansion Delay, Education, CAFO Zoning

Feb 29, 2016

The Statehouse Podcast for February 29th, 2016 includes coverage of a delay in possible Medicaid expansion, education issues, CAFO zoning changes, and a bill dealing with the sale of fetal body parts.

The Statehouse Podcast for February 28th, 2016 includes coverage of legislation on transgender bathrooms, possible Medicaid expansion, medical marijuana, and education funding.

Jenifer Jones

The Statehouse Podcast for February 24th, 2016 includes coverage of legislation on education funding, payday loans, Medicaid expansion, mascots, and more.

Statehouse Podcast: Transgender Bathrooms, Ed Funding, CAFO’s, Marijuana

Feb 16, 2016
Jenifer Jones

The State House podcast for Tuesday February 16th, 2016 includes coverage of legislation on regulations of transgender bathrooms and locker rooms in schools, education funding, feedlot approval regulations, and drug policy.

Statehouse Podcast: Medical Marijuana, Death Penalty, Ed Funding

Feb 10, 2016

The Statehouse Podcast for February 10th, 2016 includes coverage of legislation on medical marijuana, the death penalty, education funding, healthcare, sex ed, and abortion.

Kealey Bultena / SDPB

A bill to end the death penalty in South Dakota failed in the state legislature. State Senator Art Rusch, who spent many years as a prosecutor and circuit judge, brought Senate Bill 94 to the House State Affairs Committee Wednesday. Testimony on both sides was often emotional. Lynnette Johnson of Sioux Falls lost her husband on his 63rd birthday in 2011. Ronald “RJ” Johnson was attacked and killed during an escape attempt by two men serving life prison terms. Johnson’s widow is opposed to...

SDPB

The Statehouse Podcast for February 8th, 2016 includes coverage of legislation on: abortion regulations, education funding, religious freedom and LGBT civil rights, open meetings, and a courthouse and capitol enhanced conceal carry bill.

Jenifer Jones

The Statehouse Podcast for February 4th, 2016 includes coverage of legislation on industrial hemp, and medical marijuana along with a bill allowing lawmakers to carry a concealed handgun in the capitol. The podcast also includes coverage of a bill requiring mandatory meningitis vaccination for middle school students and a bill dealing with science curriculum requirements - plus other legislation.

Jenifer Jones

The Statehouse Podcast for January 26th, 2016 includes stories on: a proposed change to daylight savings time, regulations for changing school district boundaries, a bill that requires lockdown practice in schools, and more.

Katie Hunhoff - South Dakota Magazine

The Legislative Podcast for January 21, 2016 includes three stories on education issues plus a story on a proposal to change the DUI law for juveniles and an effort to end the Pac Man Tax.

Legislative Podcast: College Prep, Kickboxing Fees, Elder Abuse

Jan 19, 2016
Amy Varland

The Legislative Podcast for January 19th, 2016 includes stories on boosting college prep, an increase in kickboxing and MMA event fees, an effort to curb elder abuse, and a list of new prohibited drugs being considered by lawmakers.

Legislative Podcast: State Of Tribes Address In Pierre

Jan 14, 2016

The Legislative Podcast for January 14th, 2016 includes highlights of the first ever State of Tribes Address in Pierre and a look at one bill that sailed out of the State Senate Commerce Committee.

Governor Dennis Daugaard gave his State of the State Address to lawmakers on Tuesday. Here is a rundown of the highlights.
You can find the entire address archived here . Education

Governor Dennis Daugaard wasted no time getting to the biggest issue of the 2016 legislative session, namely education funding. He tackled the issue at the top of his State of the State address.

Daugaard says South Dakota must act to increase teacher pay and overall education...

SDPB

Governor Dennis Daugaard is proposing a total state budget of about $4.8-billion for fiscal year 2017. You can listen to the entire address archived here. Daugaard says South Dakota is in good fiscal shape overall. He says the state has balanced its budget honestly.

“We’ve made a structurally balanced budget the norm,” says Daugaard. “We’ve used one time dollars prudently ensuring they don’t become and on-going obligation. We’ve paid off even more debt. We have a state pension...

Obama Rejects KXL

Nov 6, 2015
Victoria Wicks SDPB

President Barack Obama has rejected a permit that would allow the Keystone Pipeline to cross the Canadian border.

“This morning, Secretary Kerry informed me that, after extensive public outreach, and after consultation with several different agencies, the State Department has decided that the Keystone X-L Pipeline would not serve the national interests of the United States. I agree with that decision,” says Obama.

The President says the pipeline is not needed...

Flags fly at half-staff out of respect for former South Dakota Governor Walter Dale Miller. He died Monday at the age of 89. Miller was born in October of 1925 in Meade County, South Dakota. He was a longtime school board member and state politician before becoming governor in 1993. Walter Dale Miller served in the state’s top office for less than one term, but those who worked with him say South Dakota still feels the impact of his decades of leadership. He was a tall man who some call a...

Molly Miles

The United States Supreme Court issued a ruling Friday morning that makes same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states. Now South Dakotans are reacting to the opinion in Obergefell v. Hodges that says states cannot ban same-sex marriage. South Dakota’s Attorney General says the same-sex marriage decision from the US Supreme Court is immediate. Marty Jackley says that means gay and lesbian couples can apply for marriage licenses in South Dakota right away. "We’re asking the local elected officials...

The 20-15 South Dakota Legislative Session began with the annual State of the State Address today (Tuesday). Governor Dennis Daugaard says his top priority is working on the state’s roads and bridges. After the pleasantries and welcome of new lawmakers to their first session, Governor Daugaard didn’t mince any words with his goals for the state. (BITE :15) “It’s my duty to open this session with some thoughts on some issues we face as a state. I’d like to begin right away today by talking to...

Governor Dennis Daugaard’s State of the State Address focused on improving South Dakota’s transportation system. Much of that time was spent on funding proposals to improve the state’s roads and bridges. But Daugaard says another way to save excessive wear on highways is to utilize rail. (BITE :35) “We all know trucks take a toll on our roads—let’s put that in perspective. One truck with a legal load—a legal load—causes the same wear on our highways as 9-thousand, 600 cars. That’s one legally...

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