Redwood Area Chamber & Tourism announces more Visionary Awards

Deb Moldaschel
Redwood Falls Gazette

Redwood Area Chamber & Tourism celebrated their 24th Annual Gala with a Virtual Chamber Gala Week in response to current event guidelines. The Chamber Gala is the organization’s largest fundraiser of the year and is traditionally a much anticipated and well attended event. The Gala financially supports the Chamber’s ongoing business educational events and advocacy work on behalf of local businesses. 

Chamber Executive Director Anne Johnson said one of everyone’s favorite part of the Gala is recognizing community members with Visionary Awards. 

These special awards receive nominations by the public and are intended to recognize an individual or individuals or a non-profit that has followed their vision by getting off to a successful start in their career or mission, and also gives of themselves, their time and talents, and their resources to the community in such a way that the entire community benefits.

The Visionary Awards have been presented in person over the last few weeks. This week the recipients of the Star Ag Award and the Hidden Gem Award are announced, with more to follow in the coming days.

Left photo: Kevin Kvistro (center) was presented with the 2021 Star Ag Visionary Award by 2018 Star Ag Lisa Orren (left) and 2020 Star Ag Kirby Josephson. Right: 2018 Hidden Gem Laura Kohler and nominator Kristine Reinhart presented the 2021 Hidden Gem Visionary Award to Loretta Dixon, with Lower Sioux Indian Community President Robert Larsen on hand to offer congratulations.

Star Ag Visionary Award 2021 

The Visionary “Star Ag” Award is reserved for an area ag producer or ag related business person who has been a leader in the ag industry. Congratulations to Kevin Kvistro, 2021 Star Ag Visionary Award recipient.

Kvistro has been a dedicated member of the Redwood Area Chamber Ag Committee for over 20 years. He’s the kind of committee member everyone wants on their team. He pitches in where needed, including at last year's golf tournament, where he literally put on an apron and took over grilling more than 100 steaks. Kvistro has helped facilitate everything from 5th Grade Ag Day to the Golf Tournaments to Farmfest, doing his part to help the Redwood Area Chamber Ag Committee raise thousands of dollars for ag scholarships. Kvistro recently retired from his career at Farm Service Agency after 32 years of service and ag advocacy in the farm industry.

Hidden Gem Visionary Award 2021 

The Visionary “Hidden Gem” Award is awarded to an area individual (Chamber member or non-member) who quietly, yet effectively, works to better the community. Congratulations to Loretta Dixon, 2021 Hidden Gem Visionary Award recipient.

Dixon is a valued member of the Lower Sioux Indian Community in Morton. As the Contracts and Grants Manager for the LSIC, she is a major asset not only to the community, but to all employees and potential prospects. Dixon has a wealth of knowledge in all areas and goes above and beyond to assist children, elders, coworkers, and the public to ensure needs are met. She is always willing to assist and offer her help when others are struggling with challenges. Dixon also volunteers on various boards in the community and her nominator wrote, “Loretta is an impeccable leader when it comes to change and we value that in her.”