AP Photo/James Nord

Kristi Noem: Trail Blazing Woman of the Wilderness

Kristi Noem, South Dakota state governor and GOP member, deserves recognition for her positive impact on the outdoors.

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem holds perhaps one of the most influential positions a female proponent of the great outdoors can possibly hold in the United States.

The Republican politician has worked closely with lawmakers in the South Dakota capitol since January, 2015 as well as years prior when she served as the U.S. Representative for South Dakota's at-large congressional district.

Noem has gone on record saying that hunting "keeps me grounded." She's an advocate for responsible gun ownership and the preservation of gun rights for law abiding citizens. She puts on the Sportsmen's Showcase, a family-friendly trade show specializing in all things outdoors.

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It's no wonder, considering her upbringing. Noem's family ran a hunting lodge throughout her childhood, and the practice was an opportunity for her to connect with her father before he passed away at age 49.

Noem's office lists hunting, and specifically South Dakota pheasant hunting, as a priority well worth conserving for its impact on the local economy and heritage. As a result, a push for habitat improvement is also part of her platform.

She also delivered the keynote speech at the 2021 Outdoor Sportsman Group Producer Summit, which is well worth listening to.

Speaking for South Dakotans as well as Americans who love and appreciate the outdoors, Kristi Noem is personifying the traits that all Women of the Wilderness share. The power to promote change, a welcoming and encouraging attitude, and a true appreciation for what the outdoors can offer all help fortify Noem's role as difference maker.

South Dakota's governor is showing us what the outdoor community needs the most: enthusiastic participants who know the importance of preserving its future.