SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – Gov. Kristi Noem is asking for public input on naming a replacement for Republican Sen. Jessica Castleberry, who resigned on Thursday.
In a news release Friday, Noem’s office asked for nomination materials to be submitted by Sept. 18.
“Those wishing to be considered for the Senate vacancy, or to offer nominations, should email Ben Koisti at Ben.Koisti@state.sd.us. Nominations should include the candidate’s name, current physical address, resume, cover letter and letters of recommendation,” Noem’s news release said.
Castleberry was appointed by Noem to fill the term of Lyndi DiSanto who resigned in 2019. Castleberry’s appointment became effective on January 1, 2020, and she served during the 2020 session. She was formally elected in November 2020 and re-elected in 2022.
On Thursday, Attorney General Marty Jackley announced a resolution has been reached with Castleberry. He said an agreement has been reached to repay just over $499,000 of the COVID-19 funds that went to her business, Little Nest Preschool, along with interest. Another portion of the funds, about $100,000, went directly to families in need and won’t be sought to be repaid by the state, Jackley said.
Minutes after the news conference ended, Castleberry, who represented District 35 in eastern Rapid City, announced her resignation.
Castleberry said she is “glad speculation from other state departments and the executive branch regarding my ethics and intentions can be laid to rest.”
Noem asked for public input to fill a District 35 vacancy in 2019.
Noem last appointed a state lawmaker in 2020 when she appointed Republican Sen. Casey Crabtree in June 2020 to replace Jordan Youngberg who resigned in District 8.