5 questions with ……Republican State Senator Bill Shorma

In response to the resignation of State Senator Dan Lederman, Governor Dennis Daugaard recently made an appointment for State Senate, naming William “Bill” Shorma to the position. According to the press release from the Governor:

IMG_1405.PNGShorma grew up farming and ranching and working in his family’s businesses in Wahpeton, N.D. He was president and part owner of the Shorma family-owned Shur-Co and Truxedo, both of Yankton, S.D. Currently Shorma is CEO of Rush-Co, another Shorma family-owned company located in Springfield, S.D., that manufactures and combines metal and industrial fabric products.


Shorma is a former director of the Board of the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank. He has served as chair of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and Industry, chair of the Yankton Area Chamber of Commerce, president of the Prairie Family Business Association and a member of the South Dakota Junior Achievement Board of Directors.

Shorma and his wife of 39 years, Marcie, have three grown daughters and eight grandchildren. They are members of Morningside Lutheran Church in Sioux City.

Read that here.

But a press release only scratches the surface. I wanted to know who was going to represent the Republican Party in the state senate from that area of the state, so I dug a little further. And tonight, we have 5 questions with Republican State Senator Bill Shorma:

1. Can you give us a brief rundown of what in your background you believe has prepared you best for serving in the state legislature?

To be honest no one can be completely prepared for an upcoming legislative session. I feel that my business career, serving on private company boards, family business boards, and non –profit boards with fiduciary responsibility along with running companies, have be prepared to listen, learn and keep an open mind to issues that will be discussed and considered during the session and looking for sound ways to deal with the challenges presented.

2. With your appointment to the office by the Governor, you were quickly thrown into elections for caucus leadership. Was the process anything like you’d would have anticipated?

To be honest it was pretty much as I had hoped for… collegial, informative and each member had the freedom to vote the way that they felt was best.

3. A lot of times, people have an opinion of GOP State Senators, that they can check off a list of where they stand on certain issues, and anticipate how they’ll vote. Are there any issues where you might stand apart from a majority, or that people might be surprised to learn?

It will likely be no surprise to most that I am fiscally conservative and my personal belief system will weigh in on my votes.

One area of interest that I have been working on is born out of my Manufacturing background. Workforce development has been a growing hot topic that the state, educators, tech schools, manufacturers and others must join forces on to be certain that new folks entering the workforce understand that manufacturing offers a wide range of great jobs to choose from. While production workers will always be needed, front line managers, production schedulers, expediters, engineers, drafters, accountants, marketing specialists, sales people, human resource leaders, and maintenance mechanics are very shorter supply as well. Manufacturing jobs pay very will compared with many other employment sectors and most are willing to offer on the job training for many of the positions. However, I am not convinced that it is necessary to legislate solutions to this issue as much as it is to influence and grow awareness, I will do my best to do so.

4. Are there any specific issues or areas that you anticipate focusing your energies on during the upcoming legislative session? What committees are you hoping to serve on?

I will make a significant personal effort to add value to any committee that I am assigned. I will not find out which committee I will be serving on for a while yet, but I have the most experience as it relates to Business and Agriculture. So the Commerce and Energy, and the Agriculture and Natural Resources committees would be my first choices but I will serve at the pleasure of the Leadership.

5. If it’s not referred by the voters, a change in state law this year could have you collecting petition signatures in December, and starting out your 2016 political campaign before you travel to Pierre for your first session. How are you preparing your first race as a Republican candidate for State Senate?

While I do need to collect signatures, I will not be starting a campaign effort until after the 2016 legislative session. However, in preparation for my first session it is only 7 to 8 months away, I will visit with as many folks in the district as I can about their wishes, thoughts and interests. I will be reaching out to Small and Medium sized manufacturers and listen to their employee’s about their thoughts on issues that affect them and their families. I will be visiting with Agricultural producers to understand the challenges that they are facing or support that they may need.

If anyone wishes to contact me please do so by sending me an email at [email protected]


And thank you very much to Senator Shorma for participating!. (Coming soon – 5 Questions with Senator Scott Fiegen)

7 thoughts on “5 questions with ……Republican State Senator Bill Shorma”

  1. Whenever I hear a Republican say they are a fiscal conservative but not mention their position on social issues, I get concerned.

  2. “Workforce development?” Yeah, not the comments of an actual fiscal conservative LIMITED GOVERNMENT Republican.

    He is a Daugaard appointee, that right there says he is another big government loving tax and spender.

    1. Did you skip the part where he said he doesn’t think it is proper to legislate solutions to workforce development?

  3. Nice article and intelligent answers from Senator Shorma. Obviously a person who doesn’t sit around waiting for things to come his way and his interest in Agriculture really has peaked my desire to meet him.

    Personally I think Governor DD again has found someone of outstanding character to fill a constitutionally mandated choice he had to make.

    Joke for the day and one Mr. Shorma will appreciate: What is the difference between a North Dakotan and a South Dakotan?

    Just a couple pounds. Not sure which way.

  4. Hopefully he is reading this and would like to answer some more questions!!!
    1. Will you work/vote towards a more pro life government policy?
    2. What is your stance on gun rights? Do you believe in our current system (which includes taxes for carrying concealed) or would you vote for a more constitutional state policy on gun rights? Or do you believe they aren’t controlled enough?
    3. Do you see yourself as a compromiser on issues? Are there any issues you wouldn’t compromise on?
    4. What’s your favorite NFL team?

    1. Shorma sounds like a good legislator. I’m sure he will do well and that Daugaard picked a good man. I hope he chooses to run for the House and allows Bolin the senate seat so they don’t have a primary. I would give Bolin a big edge and I’d hate to lose Shorma.

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