State Watch

Noem’s daughter to turn in real estate appraiser license amid scrutiny

Kassidy Peters, the daughter of South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R), announced Tuesday that she is relinquishing her real estate appraiser license and leaving the industry by the end of 2021 amid lingering scrutiny over whether her mother stepped in to help her obtain the license.

Peters insisted in a letter to the South Dakota Department of Labor on Tuesday that neither she nor Noem had committed any wrongdoing, but that the controversy had taken a substantial toll on her business.

“I have thought quite a lot about what is best for me, my business, and most importantly, my family. The entire inquiry and media pressure have done irreparable damage to my business,” Peters wrote in the letter, referencing a legislative inquiry into the circumstances around her licensing.

“I’m angry and I can acknowledge that this has successfully destroyed my business. My business is finished and the years I spent working to become licensed amount to nothing. So I’ve decided that I will no longer accept new appraisal orders and will wrap up the few pending orders I do have,” she wrote. “I will plan to turn in my license and dissolve my business by the end of the year.” 

Peters suggested in the letter, which was shared on Twitter by her husband, that she was under such scrutiny because she is Noem’s daughter. 

“I know as the governor’s daughter I am always going to be in the public eye,” she wrote. “I can’t stop these attacks, but I can choose whether to keep being hurt by the fallout.”

Noem, who is broadly considered to be considering a presidential campaign in 2024, has been hit with criticism after it was revealed she met in 2020 with the head of the state agency that moved to deny her daughter a real estate appraiser certification. 

The legislative probe has specifically examined whether Noem inappropriately used her status as governor to help Peters’s application for an appraiser license. The meeting included Peters as well as Sherry Bren, who leads the state’s appraiser certification program, and South Dakota Labor Secretary Marcia Hultman.

Peters later obtained a license, but Noem insisted that no special privilege was granted to her.

“There’s a lot of speculation and innuendo in the media and I wanted to take a second to set the record straight. I never once asked for special treatment for Kassidy,” Noem said in a video released last month. “She is my daughter and I’m proud of her. I raised her to accomplish things on her own just like my parents raised me.”

“The media is ignoring those facts,” she added. “They’d rather attack my daughter in order to score cheap political points against me. But I’m not focused on that, I’m focused on making it easier on young South Dakotans to enter this field and that will make it easier for South Dakotans to purchase a home.”

Tags Appraiser Governor of South Dakota Kristi Noem South Dakota

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