Santel Cooperative

Our cooperative is made up of several communities in south-east South Dakota. Through our Annual Meeting, our patrons nominate and elect Directors from their communities to guide the cooperative via its Board of Directors. 

The Santel cooperative service area is primarily made up of three area districts: North, Central, and South. There are two Director seats per District as well as one “at-Large” seat, for a total of seven Directors on the board.


Richard Alt

Central District
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Richard has been on the cooperative Board of Directors since 1994 and is the current Board President.

Richard and his wife, Louise, live in the Forestburg exchange.  Richard is the owner of Alt Tax & Accounting.  He owns and operates the Country Pumper convenience store on Highway 34 as well as a custom farming operation with his son, Adam.   Richard is also on the Forestburg Farmers Elevator board and serves as board secretary.

Pam Moore

Central District
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Pam Moore, has been on the board since 1995 and is from our Artesian service area.  Dr. Pam is a Veterinarian and ranches with her husband, Jerry, and have two grown children. 


“Our cooperative is owed by the patrons that utilize the service.  Just like today’s ag production operations, we are long-term planners — in a world where technology changes very fast.”


Jerry Jenssen

North District
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Jerry joined the board in 2015 and is currently serving as board Treasurer.  He is from the Woonsocket service area and has been a staple of the community for many years being a parent, teacher, coach, or small business owner.  He and his wife, Gloria, raised a family of 5 grown children and enjoy their 14 grandchildren immensely.

Born and raised in Woonsocket and as a longtime community member and cooperative patron, Jerry sought to be on the Santel board, “…seeking to use his talent to help the cooperative continue to grow and prosper in this fantastic telecom industry.”

Cindy Neuharth

North District
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Cindy was elected to the Board of Directors in 2019.   After a successful career in estate planning, investments and insurance, she joined our other six directors representing cooperative membership from the north district.  Since then, she has been busy learning how a regulated, broadband service provider affordably leverages the latest technology to connect its patrons and customers to the world.  In addition to her time with the cooperative, she and her husband, Stuart, live on a farm north of Alpena.  Their family is actively engaged in farming.   


Cindy noted, “The mission and role of our cooperative is critical to the area we serve.  Its not always easy but making quality and affordable broadband available to the entire cooperative is a significant commitment.  But one I think we can all get behind.” 

Daniel Kurtenbach

South District
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Dan has been with our cooperative board since 2013 and is from Dimock, which is in our Parkston service area.  Dan currently serves as Santel board’s Secretary and also serves on the board of another area cooperative, Ethan Coop Lumber.  Dan and his wife, Linda, are solid supporters of the cooperative way of business:  local patronage and control; communities taking care of each other.

When asked why it is important for our cooperative to provide services, he said: “To help people get better services to meet their needs as well as the needs of our communities.”

Jeff Kramer

South District
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Dr. Jeff Kramer has been on the Santel board since 2002 and is currently serving as Vice President.  Jeff and his wife, Teri, operate their chiropractic practice on Main Street in Tripp and enjoy the small-town family pleasures with their son Kolter.  Jeff is very active within his profession and community.  Dr. Kramer is the current President of the South Dakota Board of Chiropractic Examiners, current member and President of the Tripp-Delmont School board, active with the Tripp Fire Department, and Parkston Youth Football.  In the past he has also been Assistance Coach and Team Physician for Tripp-Delmont-Armour football teams as well as an EMT and Director for the Tripp Ambulance Service.   Jeff’s interests include computers and any spectator sports, but most of all he enjoys hunting, fishing, camping and boating with his family.

When asked about the cooperative’s relevance, Jeff said, “The role and our dependence on technology and connectedness in our homes and businesses has expanded rapidly.  Our cooperative and board’s challenge is to make mindful, long-term community based investments where other national providers choose not to invest.”

Kent Swenson

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Kent has been on the Santel board since 1984 and is our current At-Large Director.  He lives just outside of Woonsocket and operates a family farm as well as participates in his wife’s watermelon business.   They are joined by their three grown children and their respective families in operating a very diverse and fast changing operation.  Kent has several other areas of community involvement:  T&C Fire Board treasurer, Woonsocket Community Club, St Wilfrid’s Catholic Church, and the Knights of Columbus.

When asked about the longevity of several Santel board directors, he said, “It is critical to stay on top of the technology and regulation changes and opportunities.  Our cooperative has benefited by defining and being dedicated to a long-term vision, patience, and at the same time opportunistic.”

Ryan Thompson

General Manager

Jeff Larson


Team Members

Santel is managed by a committed team of telecom professionals. Known for fast and friendly service, they always put members first.

Customer Service (Left to Right):

Aaron Roesler, Pam Kopfmann, Randy Northrup, Kim Hiemstra, Trevor Morgan, Leah Scofield, Kyle Zoss

Installation and Repair (Left to Right):

Brayden Leischner, Scott Beekman, Morrey Overby, Cayden Slykhuis, Mark Wilson, Joe Geppert, Abiah Plastow, Mark Hohn

Network and Building Operations (Left to Right):

Mike Bamsey, Mark Wilson, Scott Beukelman, Don Brady

Tech Solutions (Left to Right):

Carter Meyer, Nichole Bussmuss, Roger Tienter, Bryson Boehmer, Nathan Butler, Jordan Thuringer, Tanner Thuringer, Colin Mann, Nathan Snyder

Administration (Left to Right):

Donna Spier, Ryan Thompson, Julie Haiar