City Hall VIPs

In early March, some of our students got the very cool chance to tour City Hall, meet Mayor Paul TenHaken, and learn more about their rights as people living and working in Sioux Falls.

A big THANK YOU! to Assistant City Attorney Katie Dunn and Human Relations Specialist Valerie Schonewill of the Sioux Falls Human Relations Office for welcoming us and teaching us more about our city government.

Meeting the Mayor!

We started our day in the Commission Room at City Hall, where Mayor TenHaken brought us Daylight Donuts and listened to each student introduce themselves. When the Mayor asked if there is anything they don’t like about Sioux Falls, a student said, “It’s too cold here, can you change that?” 🙂 On a more serious note, one of our students did share that he’s concerned that too many people drive cars in this city and that is harming our environment, and the Mayor shared this sentiment.

mayors office

Students and Teachers with Mayor Paul TenHaken.

Touring the Resources!

After a few group photos and selfies, the Mayor had another meeting to attend, so it was time for Katie and Valerie to take us around City Hall (such beautiful architecture!) and then we walked down to the Downtown Library to take a lap around the building and learn about the resources available there. I think we definitely could have stayed at the library for hours and would have been very happy!

city center

Listening to Assistant City Attorney Katie Dunn talk about the resources available at the City Center.

Understanding Our Rights!

Finally, we ended at the beautiful new City Center, where Katie gave the students “Know Your Rights” training and taught them about protected classes and discrimination. The information we received was very helpful as the students now have a clearer understanding of the rights of people living and working in Sioux Falls.


Getting ready to receive some training about their rights and to learn about employment and housing discrimination.

Overall, we had a great morning and loved getting to connect with our city officials! Thanks, City Hall, we’ll be back!

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