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Patnoe Family of Liberty Superstores Receives Coca-Cola Excellence in Family Business Award Presented By USD Prairie Family Business Association

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Prairie Family Business Association, an outreach center of the Beacom School of Business at the University of South Dakota, awarded the Coca-Cola Excellence in Family Business Award and Legacy Tour in Rapid City on Oct. 9 to the Patnoe Family of Liberty Superstores. This award has been presented for 24 years to a local Rapid City family business.

Liberty Superstores was founded in 1931 by Ernest Patnoe. Now with the third and fourth generations of the family working in the business with more than 130 employees, they attribute their success to continuing to embrace the motto of Founder Ernest Patnoe, “We smile when you come, you smile when you leave”. They are proud to have several employees with over 30 years of tenure and two employees recently hitting the 40 year mark.

Second generation leader Larry Patnoe was present for the award presentation as was third generation leader Don Patnoe. Max Patnoe, fourth generation, accepted the award on behalf of the family. Several key employees were recognized by the Patnoe Family at the evening celebration.

“The Patnoe Family puts in hard work to make their business a success. They embrace the family business culture that their employees and customers respect and appreciate. We are pleased to recognize the Patnoe Family with this well-deserved family business award and will continue to support them as they plan for the future of their business and family,” states Prairie Family Business Association Executive Director Stephanie Larscheid.

The Coca-Cola Excellence in Family Business Award was established in memory of L.E. Mike Messinger and in honor of Michael Messinger to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of family-owned businesses to the economy and the region. This award recognizes multi-generational family businesses with practices and policies that positively impact local business, as well as the neighboring community.

br /> Prairie Family Business Association was founded in 1993 as a South Dakota family business initiative through the University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business with the mission of enhancing the long-term survival and success of its family business members.


USD's Beacom School of Business was established in 1927 and has been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) since 1949. The leading business school in the region, Beacom’s programs are consistently ranked among the top business schools in the nation by Princeton Review, U.S. News & World Report and others for its high-quality learning experience, student success, affordability, and high-caliber of faculty and students. Whether a student chooses face-to-face or online courses, Beacom’s programs emphasize real-world experience through professional organizations, quality internships and capstone projects.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News