The Board of Regents has constitutional responsibility for governing the unified system of public higher education in South Dakota, which encompasses its supervision, coordination, management, and regulation. The Board sets policy direction for the system, oversees management of its resources (personnel, facilities, and financial), and establishes and monitors its educational program. The Board executes its authority through the adoption of policies, approval of programs, selection and evaluation of system and institutional executives, and the setting of annual budgets, tuition and fees, and legislative budget requests.
The principal expectations and responsibilities of the Board of Regents are:
- Convey a thorough understanding of the purpose and responsibilities of higher education in all its forms and the external influences impacting it.
- Approve and adopt a system-wide strategic plan.
- Approve institutional mission statements.
- Develop overarching policies, priorities, and practices that ensure maximum return on investment for the state's investment in higher education.
- Ensure alignment of system goals with the state's needs.
- Maintain external support and trust by demonstrating and demanding the highest standards of quality, integrity, and accountability.
- Actively advocate for higher education.
- Appoint highly effective leaders, delegating broad authority to them while maintaining a rigorous system of evaluation and accountability.
- Advocate for state and private funding and establish an annual budget.
The Board is composed of nine voting members appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the South Dakota Senate. One of the nine members is a student regent. The term for each regent, except for the student regent, is six years, with terms expiring the last day of March. Regents can be reappointed to a second term. The term of the student regent is two years. No two regents may be residents in the same county, and no more than six may be members of the same political party.
The Board of Regents selects institutional presidents and superintendents for the eight institutions under the Board's authority. The Board delegates to the presidents and superintendents the responsibilities for managing and operating the individual institutions within the framework of a unified system. The presidents and superintendents report activities of their institutions and their leadership to the Board through the CEO. System management and policy recommendations are considered by councils representing the universities and special schools and forwarded to the Board through the CEO.
SDBOR System Office
SDBOR central office is located in Pierre. Under the leadership of the CEO, system office staff members advocate on behalf of the eight institutions, facilitate collaboration and efficiencies among the institutions, and provide the necessary support to the Board to allow them to effectively lead the system. Within the system office, the following positions currently report directly to the CEO:
- Executive Assistant to the CEO and Board
- System Vice President for Academic Affairs
- System Vice President of Finance and Administration
- General Counsel
- Director of Human Resources
- Director of Communications
- Internal Auditor