Zeal names new executive director

April 24, 2019

Brienne Maner has been named the new executive director of the Zeal Center for Entrepreneurship.

Maner comes to the new role from Downtown Sioux Falls Inc., where she served as vice president.

Maner’s experience with nonprofits and track record of promoting businesses and fostering connections make her a great fit for the organization, said Karla Santi, chair of the Zeal board of directors and CEO of Blend Interactive.

“We are excited to have Brienne share her passion for small business and the entrepreneurial community as we lead Zeal into our next phase of growth. Her strong sense of community lends itself well to supporting our vision to create a thriving hub of entrepreneurship,” Santi said in a news release.

Maner is a well-known presence in the local business community through her role with Downtown Sioux Falls Inc. As executive director, Maner will lead Zeal staff in promoting and driving entrepreneurship throughout the Sioux Falls area. Her responsibilities will include operational leadership, strategic planning and execution, entrepreneurial programming, and community and partner relations.

“Serving the downtown business community for the past seven years has been an absolute inspiration, and I am thrilled for this opportunity to continue serving the great city of Sioux Falls and its many innovative entrepreneurs through my new position at Zeal,” Maner said.

She begins her new position May 24.

Zeal has been led on an interim basis by Laurie Knutson since late last year.

The organization was established in 2004 through a partnership initiative between the Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce and the Sioux Falls Development Foundation through Forward Sioux Falls. Its mission is to foster entrepreneurship by providing a dynamic environment to grow emerging businesses.

Zeal names new executive director

Brienne Maner has been named the new executive director of Zeal Center for Entrepreneurship.

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