There must be gray in your hair, at least at the roots, if you can remember when Bob Sutton wasn’t involved in public affairs in South Dakota.
Sutton is only 44, but it seems like he’s been around forever getting things done. His latest role is the newest, and the youngest, member on the state Board of Regents.
The regents govern South Dakota’s public universities. Governors appoint the members, but the state constitution sets their authority.
Sutton was chosen by Gov. Dennis Daugaard to succeed Jim Hansen of Pierre, who had been on the board since spring 1995.
A year or two ago Sutton let a governor’s aide know he was interested. In January he was asked to submit a letter explaining why.
He wrote about the relationship between post-high school education and development of communities and their economies.
He also spoke with several regents including president Dean Krogman of Brookings.
On March 22, the governor announced his choice. Sutton, whose term runs into 2019, heads to Brookings for his first official meeting of the full board when they gather Tuesday night.
A few days ago he received the meeting packet. The main agenda for the three days has 29 items including executive sessions, breakfast with legislators, an open forum and a reception. There are 22 items on two committees’ agendas, too.
Sutton also began a new job in January as vice president of community relations for Avera Health, the Sioux Falls-based organization of hospitals, clinics and other services in many communities in eastern and central South Dakota. He was allowed to stay in Pierre.