Kealey Bultena

SDPB News Reporter

Kealey Bultena grew up in South Dakota, where her grandparents took advantage of the state’s agriculture at nap time, tricking her into car rides to “go see cows.” Rarely did she stay awake long enough to see the livestock, but now she writes stories about the animals – and the legislature and education and much more. Kealey worked in television for four years while attending the University of South Dakota. She started interning with South Dakota Public Broadcasting in September 2010 and accepted a position with television in 2011. Now Kealey is the radio news producer stationed in Sioux Falls. As a multi-media journalist, Kealey prides herself on the diversity of the stories she tells and the impact her work has on people across the state. Kealey is always searching for new ideas. Let her know of a great story! Find her on Facebook and twitter (@KealeySDPB).

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Education
2:20 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Dakota Midday: SDEA President

We are in the middle of American Education Week. This is the National Education Association’s 93rd celebration of public schools and the people who make quality education possible across the country.

Mary McCorkle is the new president of the South Dakota Education Association. She assumed that position this summer. She worked as a teacher at the Mobridge-Pollock School District for 32 years before moving to Pierre to lead the state teachers union.

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News
3:12 am
Thu November 20, 2014

SDEA Pres: Good Education Is A Right

The South Dakota Education Association’s new president wants people to understand how the state fits into the country’s conversations about public schools. This is American Education Week. The purpose is to celebrate all people who make quality education possible. The new SDEA leader says good schools require input from everyone.

The 93rd annual American Education Week theme is "Great Public Schools: A Basic Right and Our Responsibility."

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News
10:06 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Businesses Commit To Hunger Relief

Dan Murphy speaks to a crowd about ties the business community has to hunger relief in South Dakota. / November 21, 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

Business leaders in the southeastern part of the state are committing to raising $1.2 million for Feeding South Dakota. The money is more than a third of the cost of a capital campaign to expand facilities in Sioux Falls. Members of the business community say the issue of hunger is personal.

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News
9:46 am
Wed November 19, 2014

SF School Holds Large Evacuation Drill

Students leave school and load a bus for transport to the planned safe location during an evacuation drill at Mark Twain Elementary.
Kealey Bultena SDPB

School leaders and emergency responders are hoping to learn from a mock evacuation drill held Tuesday in Sioux Falls.

All fourth and fifth graders from Mark Twain Elementary emptied their classrooms, rode busses to a safe location and waited for parents to pick them up. The reunification exercise puts school district policy in action.

Classroom telephones ring at Mark Twain Elementary. In this drill, teachers learn their students need to evacuate an unsafe building.

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News
4:09 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

Cold/Flu Season Brings Antibiotic Risk

The season of sore throats, the flu, and coughs is upon us, and doctors say the search to feel well again can actually hurt your health. Using antibiotics too often or when they can’t help…leads to superbugs that resist treatment, and health care professionals are working to curb antibiotic overuse.

When a sore throat or sinus infection strikes, some people rush to the doctor hoping to get antibiotics to wipe the sickness away. But many winter ailments are viral – some statistics show up to 90 percent – and most medicines are not effective remedies.

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News
1:21 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

Soldier Presents SF Fire Chief With Flag

The flag flown in Kandahar, Afghanistan presented to Sioux Falls Fire Rescue Chief Jim Sideras.
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

On a day set aside to acknowledge members of the Armed Forces, one soldier honors his civilian heroes back home. A member of the US Army Reserves 315th Engineer Battalion provided a gift to Sioux Falls Fire Fighters this Veterans Day. 

Michael Havlovic is a Fire Apparatus Operator for Sioux Falls Fire Rescue. He is a Sergeant 1st Class currently serving in Afghanistan. Havlovic had a United States flag flown over a command post at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan on September 11th. Two months later on Veterans Day, a fire captain presented that flag to Fire Chief Jim Sideras.

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News
1:14 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

Cold Temps Settle In SD

It's still technically fall, but winter has arrived in Sotuh Dakota. Weather experts says this week’s cold temperatures are sticking around. In areas hardest hit by a winter storm Monday, South Dakota communities are dealing with 10 inches of snow and freezing temps. The blast of winter weather is somewhat unusual for mid-November, but the forecast isn’t changing any time soon.

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News
11:19 am
Fri November 7, 2014

Family Donates $1M To Custer State Park

Members of the SDPWF stand with Governor Dennis Daugaard, First Lady Linda Daugaard, Eloise Elmen and her son, Richard Elmen / November 7, 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

A Sioux Falls foundation is donating $1 million to help construct a new visitor center at Custer State Park. The grant comes from the James and Eloise Elmen Foundation.

Governor Dennis Daugaard calls it a substantial gift to constructing a $5 million world-class visitor center.

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News
11:05 am
Fri November 7, 2014

Johnson Ends 'Tour Of Thanks' In SF

Sioux Falls Mayor Mike Huether discusses Johnson's political and personal journey / November 6, 2014
Kealey Bultena SDPB

United States Senator Tim Johnson is finished with his Tour of Thanks. The retiring public servant has traveled to South Dakota communities meeting with people before his term ends in January. He ends the tour with a stop in Sioux Falls. Leaders of local organizations say Johnson is an instrumental part of the area’s success.

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News
12:12 pm
Thu November 6, 2014

Daugaard Announces Leadership Team Changes

Now that he's won re-election, South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard is making changes on his senior leadership team. The governor’s Chief of Staff Dusty Johnson is leaving his post this week. That opening prompts Daugaard to find a new chief of staff and make an addition to his executive committee. 

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News
5:05 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Man Exonerated From Death Row Speaks In Sioux Falls

The first man found innocent using DNA evidence after being sentenced to death is sharing his story with South Dakotans. Kirk Bloodsworth is telling students at the University of Sioux Falls how he came to find himself convicted of rape and murder and sentenced to die when he had no connection to the crimes. He spent years in a Maryland prison before science proved him not guilty. Now Bloodsworth works to reform the criminal justice system.

"This whole thing started by a next door neighbor saying, ‘The composite sketch looks like my neighbor Kirk,'" Bloodsworth says.

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Politics
10:01 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Candidates For US House Debate

Democratic challenger Maj. Corinna Robinson and Repblican Congresswoman Kristi Noem debate on SDPB / October 16, 2014
Credit SDPB

Candidates for the United States Congress met Thursday night on SDPB Television for a debate that covered more than one dozen topics. Both women are offering their perspectives on the federal government’s relationship with Native American tribes.

Democrat Corinna Robinson says members of Congress must focus on the issues people in Indian County find important. 

"They are not getting the funding they need to continue their language training, their cultural training in their institutions, their colleges, and they would certainly like some help with that," Robinson says. "They would like better health care. They have to drive a long ways sometimes to get to a nearby clinic, or, when an emergency happens, there’s not an ambulance close by.  They certainly struggle with drug and alcohol abuse. And we certainly need to do a better job at listening and visiting hearing their concerns."

Robinson is running against incumbent Republican Congresswoman Kristi Noem. Both women say federal officials need to respect tribal sovereignty. Noem says she wants to ensure Native Americans don’t fear that federal organizations can come into businesses and claim jurisdiction on reservation land.

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News
5:03 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Hunhoff: Open Gov Laws Require EB-5 File Release

A state legislative leader says decisions surrounding economic development in South Dakota go against recent open government commitments. Five years ago, lawmakers passed legislation that says South Dakota documents are assumed public unless they fit into a list of exceptions. But one legislator says the way the state is handling questions about the EB-5 program goes against those rules. 

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News
4:52 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Ad Money Increases In Tighter Senate Race

A political action committee is committing more money to the US Senate race in South Dakota. A PAC known as Mayday is adding $250,000 to its earlier pledge of $1 million.

The money is going to media time to support Democrat Rick Weiland. He faces Independent Larry Pressler, Republican Mike Rounds, and Independent Gordon Howie in the race for United States Senate. One political scientist says he expects more national attention as poll numbers show a close competition.

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News
1:13 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Speaker Works To Curb Sexual Assault

Elaine Pasqua speaks with staff and faculty members at the University of Sioux Falls about how to prevent and handle sexual assault.
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

South Dakota colleges are complying with the Campus SaVE Act. Part of the regulations from Congress include higher education institutions inform students and faculty about sexual violence. Some schools invited a national speaker to talk with members of staff and college kids about sexual assault.

Elaine Pasqua speaks at dozens of colleges each year, and she brought her message to the University of Sioux Falls this semester. SDPB’s Kealey Bultena has this conversation with Pasqua about her messages on alcohol, sex, sexual assault, and drug use.

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News
9:29 am
Tue October 14, 2014

College Students Consider Risky Behavior, Sexual Assault

Elaine Pasqua helps educate staff and students at the University of Sioux Falls on sexual assault and risky behavior / September 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

A federal law now requires colleges to educate students and staff on preventing sexual assault. The guidelines are called the Campus SaVE Act. It’s a response to the growing number of reports that rape and sexual violence are rampant on university campuses across the US.

South Dakota colleges are complying with the Campus SaVE Act to make higher education a safer environment. Some college participants are more vulnerable to encountering sexual assault.

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News
9:25 am
Tue October 14, 2014

Victim's Family Advocates DUI Changes

Maegan Spindler was killed when a drunk driver slammed into a parking lot at highway speeds while she and coworkers stood near their vehicles in July 2013.
Credit Spindler Family

Two statisticians from New York state are examining the number of fatalities in South Dakota related to drinking and driving. It’s part of their mission as they grieve the loss of their daughter. Maegan Spindler, 25 violently died in Pickstown in July of 2013 when a drunk driver slammed into a parking lot where she was standing. Her US Fish and Wildlife mentor Rob Klumb was also killed.

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News
8:54 am
Tue October 14, 2014

Senate Hopefuls Consider Native Challenges

Candidates Gordon Howie, Rick Weiland, Larry Pressler, and Mike Rounds answer questions from forum moderator Jack Marsh / October 13, 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

Candidates for United States Senate are weighing in on the federal government’s role in Indian Affairs. The four men running for South Dakota’s open seat met Monday at a Sioux Falls Rotary Club lunch for a panel discussion. Candidates agree that something needs to change for sovereign Indian nations.

Gordon Howie is running for US Senate as an Independent. He says poverty and dysfunction exist on Native American reservations because politicians claim they champion Indian communities and don’t follow through on their support.

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News
4:19 am
Fri October 10, 2014

SD Gubernatorial Candidates Debate

Gov. Dennis Daugaard, Mike Myers, State Rep. Susan Wismer debate on SDPB TV / October 9, 2014
Credit SDPB

Each of the three candidates for Governor of South Dakota is highlighting why voters should choose him or her to lead the state. With less than one month until people go to the polls, gubernatorial hopefuls met on live television for a debate on South Dakota Public Broadcasting. The debate lasted one hour. This latest gubernatorial faceoff touched briefly on several statewide issues, but two primary topics dominated the discussion: education and health care.

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News
5:08 am
Thu October 9, 2014

Three Candidates Campaign To Govern SD

Gov. Dennis Daugaard, Mike Myers, and Rep. Susan Wismer debate earlier in the year at the State Fair in Huron.
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

Three people want to be South Dakota’s next governor, and they meet Thursday night in a statewide broadcast to share their visions with voters. Candidates meet on SDPB TV for a gubernatorial debate guided by questions from people across the state.  The three are likely to focus their answers on the issues they see as most important for South Dakota citizens.

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News
4:17 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

Super PAC Puts $1M Into SD Senate Race

A nationwide Super PAC plans to spend $1 million in the race for South Dakota’s open United States Senate Seat. A group named Mayday calls itself a citizen-funded Super PAC. Leaders say their money comes from everyday people through crowdfunding and they claim to support policy, not political parties. Mayday is putting its money into commercials, get-out-the-vote campaigns and mailers.

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News
2:01 pm
Mon October 6, 2014

High Court Hears Agg. Assault Arguments

A man found guilty of aggravated assault against law enforcement wants the state’s highest court to throw out his conviction. This week the South Dakota Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments at the University of Sioux Falls. Attorneys in one of Monday’s cases disagree about the state’s definition of "serious bodily injury."

Last December a Lincoln County judge found Samuel Miland guilty of possession of a controlled substance, resisting arrest, and aggravated assault against law enforcement. For that last conviction, Miland received 40 years in the state penitentiary.

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News
12:36 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Victim's Family Hears Trial After DUI Crash

Arguments in the trial following a deadly DUI crash in Pickstown last year are over this week. A judge in Charles Mix County heard evidence, reviewed graphic photos and listened to testimony in the case of 30-year-old Ronald Fischer, Junior. Fischer faces two counts of first-degree manslaughter and other charges in the deaths of two US Fish and Wildlife employees. 

Family members of one of the victims traveled across the country to be in the courtroom. Gregg Spindler, his wife and their daughter are in South Dakota from their home in rural New York.

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News
1:44 pm
Mon September 29, 2014

Planned Wind Farm Hits Investment Goal

A proposed wind farm in southeastern South Dakota has enough money to jumpstart major development. The Dakota Power Community Wind project has more than $1.5 million for the Lincoln County venture. That puts project leaders on track for additional analysis and planning.

More than 110 investors from across South Dakota are putting their money on a wind farm planned for 24,000 acres of land between Canton and Beresford. 

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News
11:13 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Committee Reviews EB-5 Responses

Lawmakers in Pierre are examining EB-5 and other economic development programs in South Dakota ahead of their final report and recommendation. They've also scheduled their next meeting for after the November election. 

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News
4:28 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Stable Enrollment At SD Public Colleges

Enrollment in South Dakota public colleges is steady this fall according to the latest numbers from the Board of Regents.

Executive Director Jack Warner says the total headcount from the six universities increased less than one percent from last fall to this semester to 36,532. He says the Board of Regents is reasonably pleased enrollment didn’t drop.

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News
12:35 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Both Sides Of IM 17 Claim Best For Patients

SD Chamber of Commerce President David Owen details the opposition against Initiated Measure 17 at a press conference in Sioux Falls. / September 23, 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

Both supporters and opponents to Initiated Measure 17 say their side benefits health care patients. The ballot initiative allows doctors to become part of health care plans negotiated between other parties. Opponents claim the move encourages government intervention in health care and try to lure people from major health systems to private medical offices. Supporters say 17 is an opportunity for patients to determine the best options for their own health care.

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News
3:43 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

Nat'l Arts Chair Visits Sioux Falls

NEA Chair Jane Chu talks to South Dakotans gathered at the Washington Pavilion during her visit to Sioux Falls. / September 22, 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

The chair of the National Endowment for the Arts says South Dakotans need to share success stories about robust local arts projects with the rest of the country.  NEA head Jane Chu is in Sioux Falls on a visit to explore federally-supported projects and speak to local advocates.

Chu says she encounters support for government investments in the arts, but she says it’s necessary that people talk about projects that prove communities benefit from nurturing arts programs.

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News
7:23 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Atty: EB-5 Leader Masqueraded As Legal Rep.

Attorney Patrick Duffy / September 18, 2014
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

The attorney for the South Dakota Democratic Party says the man who ran the EB-5 program fraudulently acted as a legal representative for the state.

It’s the latest in on-going discussions related to the way South Dakota used to administer an immigrant visa program. Federally-authorized EB-5 operations give foreign investors green cards when they put money into American enterprises.

Attorney Patrick Duffy says former state employee Joop Bollen masqueraded as a lawyer when an investor headhunter sued his business – and dragged the state of South Dakota into the lawsuit.

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News
5:15 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Inmate Indicted For Murdering Cell Mate

Douglas Ipsen / Photo Taken 09/27/2010
Credit SD Sex Offender Registry

An inmate at the South Dakota State Penitentiary is charged with murdering his cell mate. Staff discovered Kent Davidson dead in his cell after midnight on September 8, 2014. The 37-year-old was serving life in prison for the fatal shooting of his girlfriend. Davidson’s death certificate shows he died from asphyxia and ligature strangulation.

A grand jury Thursday approved an indictment. Douglas Ipsen, 28, faces alternative counts of first degree murder, second degree murder and first degree manslaughter in the death of fellow prison inmate Kent Davidson.

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