Meet Michelle Lavallee
Get to know Billie's running mate, Michelle Lavallee. She's a seasoned Sioux Falls business professional, long-time Republican, fourth-generation South Dakotan, and candidate for Lt. Governor.
South Dakota Upbringing
Originally from rural South Dakota, born on the family homestead near Huron, Michelle grew up on the family farm/ranch. Her dad, Bud, ran the sale barn, and her mom, Rita, ran the chuck wagon. As the 5th of 7 kids, Michelle grew up working cattle, barrel racing, and team roping with dad, and knows well the working-side of being a cowgirl. With this upbringing, her parents gave her the gift of independence and a strong work ethic. Michelle went out into the world with the confidence and fearlessness that comes with being able to back up a horse trailer at age 7.
South Dakota Experience
Michelle held leadership roles in some of the state's largest enterprises:
- Chief Marketing Officer and Vice President of Student Services at the University of South Dakota and took the school to new heights with record enrollment and national attention as one of the best values in higher education.
- As the Senior Vice President of Marketing, Innovation & Strategy at Avera, she helped to foster growth and expansion like a new world-class cancer institute. She later served on the Avera Rural Healthcare Advisory Board, working with rural citizens to understand and impact barriers to care.
- Michelle also initiated positive change at Raven Industries, gaining experience in the agriculture, technology, and manufacturing fields overseeing the worldwide sales and marketing teams.
She brings unique business experience to the team. Building strong South Dakota companies, Michelle has spent decades at the top of successful organizations. She’s managed hundreds of employees. She’s made tough decisions. She knows how to shake things up and deliver results.
Balance for South Dakota
Michelle brings a nice balance to the ticket as an east-river urban business woman with an outsider perspective from years of executive experience in the private sector. A longtime Republican, she’s ready to build coalitions and help Billie buck the status quo and shake up state government.
Michelle is a hard working South Dakotan who knows it’s time to end politics as usual and bring our state back to the values that make us proud to be South Dakotans. That’s why Michelle was willing to change her party registration to join Billie's ticket. This movement is bigger than any one person, or any one party. It's about restoring a trustworthy government that listens to the people and sets policies out in the open that work for all South Dakota families.