Erin Bosch is the director of women’s leadership and executive director of Dress For Success at EmBe in Sioux Falls.

Name: Erin Bosch

How can people connect with you? 

Twitter: @eebosch
Facebook (business): EmBe
Instagram: Nebosch

Where do you live now? Where do you call home?

I live in central Sioux Falls and proudly call South Dakota home.

Give us a behind-the-scenes look at your average day.

Short version (six-word memoir) – Living life straddling crazy and structured.
Long version – I start each day by getting my kids ready for school, and once they are out the door, I spend about a half hour mentally preparing for my day. The project of the day can vary greatly. Right now, I am working on the 2016 Women’s Leadership Program schedule and wrapping up the 2015 program. I am an extrovert, so you will often finding me standing in a coworkers’ doorway chatting. I try to get home about the same time as my husband, Nathan, and kids, Olive and Robbie, and then get to work on dinner. I love the conversation my little family has around the dinner table. After dinner, we work on homework or play with the kiddos and then get them to bed after reading several books. After the kids have been tucked in, I try to read a bit or watch a show or two. While not extremely exciting, my day-to-day is very fulfilling.

What projects are you currently working on, both in your career as well as hobbies or passions?

I am currently working on the expansion of the EmBe Women’s Leadership Program to Milbank, South Dakota, and have made the leap to facilitating an industry-specific leadership program, in addition to the flagship Women’s Leadership Program and Ink Your Dreams, a women’s-only entrepreneurial event.

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What challenge in your life or work are you most interested in overcoming?

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research just released The Status of Women in the States, which provides data on women’s progress in all 50 states and the United States overall. Sadly, South Dakota is ranked 42nd in terms of progress in employment and earnings for women. 42 out of 50. Women in South Dakota make 76.9 cents for every dollar a man earns and would not see equal pay until 2081. As a woman, director of a women’s leadership program and mother, I want to see that every woman knows her value and can confidently negotiate a fair compensation.

If you could do any job, what would you do and why?

I’d love to own a restaurant, something like French Laundry. I love the sense of community that is brought together over food. Some of my best and most outrageous ideas were conceived either in the kitchen or at the dinner table.

What’s your desert island album/book/TV show/movie (answer one or all)?

I loved “John Adams” by David McCulloch and loved the HBO miniseries based on the book. My alter ego loves “Sex and the City.”

Since you live in one of the OTA states:
• Why do you choose to live here?
I live here because it’s where my roots are, where I want my kids to be raised and it really is the land of infinite variety.
• What is the most beneficial aspect of living in the region when it comes to your career? Sioux Falls has a vast wealth of resourceful women who want to be impactful and supportive of other emerging female leaders.
• What’s one thing you would change about the OTA region? The wind! Seriously though, I’d like for our region to be a bit more boastful. We do so many amazing things that fly under the radar.
• What’s one thing that most people don’t know about the OTA region? We are innovative and very friendly !

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Where do think good ideas come from?

Good ideas are born from a willingness to take a risk and to be willing to accept and learn from the outcome, no matter what happens. Most of my best ideas have involved me taking a risk and stepping way out of my comfort zone.

What’s one current trend you think will change the world?

It’s not really a current trend, but I do think if everyone was open to being mentored, even reverse mentoring (a younger person mentoring a more “seasoned” person), the world would start to look a lot different; more understanding and less judgmental.

What advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?

Be authentic and be interested in what’s going on outside of your tiny inner circle.

Who is the most creative person in your life and why?

My kids are the most creative people I know. Wow, I’ve never been stretched so creatively as I have since they have entered my life. They see and say the most creative and profound things and have little fear of expressing those thoughts and feelings. There is something so pure and honest about what they say and do. They really do inspire me to do better and to be better.

Who is the most connected person in your life, and what personal characteristics make him or her so well-connected?

Tessa Gould. She has amassed a tremendous network, not only in the OTA region but worldwide. She has a tenacity I envy and try to emulate. She is honest, authentic and intrinsically knows how to get results by engaging the right people at the right time.

Who is the most community-focused person in your life, and how do they impact their communities?

I cannot give you one answer; I have several women who come to mind. As a whole, the women who have participated in the EmBe Women’s Leadership Program are affecting a lot of change in their communities. They are running for public office, they understand the value they bring to their personal and professional life and are empowering others. These women are looking to create better lives for themselves, their families and their community.

At what intersection do you live your life? 

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Creative and community with a ton of humor. I am challenged everyday to empower those around me, and I have to be creative in the way I present my platform, based on my audience. Humor and not taking myself too seriously is just part of who I am. Creativity, community and humor = trifecta!

Who are the three people you need to have coffee with when you visit Sioux Falls?

Stefanie Herseth Sandlin, to influence and inspire me. Stacie Fletcher, who helps me keep things real. The women of the Women’s Leadership Program, who keep me focused on my role in the program.

What’s the best way to put inspiration into action?

Ask for help. Collaboration is key. Know who to ask, and be specific about your request for assistance.

Who do you hope to leave a legacy for?

My kids and the women who participate in the programs I lead. My hope is that they learn from my actions and know my intentions were always in their best interest.

Who’s one regional writer/artist/leader/entrepreneur we should pay attention to?

Sarah Rhea Werner – The Write Now podcast. Sarah is a graduate of the Women’s Leadership Program and has created a podcast that helps aspiring writers find the time, energy and courage they need to pursue their passion and write every day. You can follow her at www.sarahwerner.com/write-now-podcast.

What’s the greatest risk you’ve taken?

Buying and running a small business. I knew I wasn’t going to make a million dollars selling cards, but the relationships I cultivated during that time are priceless.

What’s your biggest failure and what did you learn from it?

Having to sell my business felt like a huge personal failure but looking back, I see that it wasn’t. It was an education about the person I am, my values and what I want in my life. I am so thankful and happy where I’m at, and I owe it all to my failure.

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