Native American Heritage Month Spotlight: Corporate Image Group

Published: 14 November 2022
Native American Heritage Month - Corporate Image Group

Pathward recognizes November as Native American Heritage Month, during which we celebrate the rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and acknowledge the important contributions of Native people. Driven by our purpose of powering financial inclusion for all, we are intentional about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and are pleased to highlight John Pfeiffer and Corporate Image Group, a Native-owned business.

Corporate Image Group created an online company store for Pathward employees in advance of our brand launch in October 2022. When Pathward needed t-shirts for volunteers, we reached out to Corporate Image Group to supply them. Corporate Image Group Account Manager, Scott Podoll, later learned that Pathward has a DEI program and about our interest in supplier diversity. It was during that conversation that Podoll shared that Corporate Image Group is a certified minority owned business.

Pathward’s Director of DEI and Community Impact, Natonya Harbison, was thrilled when she learned that Pathward awarded the contract to a minority owned business without knowledge of their status of a diverse supplier.

“I always tell my minority suppliers not to lead their conversations with being diverse. Rather, lead with quality, price, and customer service. The minority status is a bonus,” Harbison shared.

Contracting with minority suppliers leads to a positive economic impact on the communities in which they serve because when a corporation does business with minority suppliers, those suppliers create jobs to grow their communities.

In recognition of Native American Heritage Month, we’re pleased to spotlight Corporate Image Group and its President, John Pfeiffer.

John Pfeiffer

Image: John Pfeiffer


About the President:
John was born and raised in the business as the fourth-generation member of his family to lead Corporate Image Group. He is a proud member of the Turtle Mountain Chippewa tribe. He believes that putting people first is the key to long-term success in business.  John is married to his high school sweetheart, Riley, and together they have two daughters and live in Aberdeen, South Dakota.

What makes this business stand out from similar organizations?
Western Printing (as we were initially called) was founded in Aberdeen in 1929. The goal was simple: provide quality printed products to business customers in the area.

Then after 50 years of executing that vision, everything changed in the late 1970s. Super 8 Motels, an Aberdeen founded company, began franchising their brand. They asked us to provide printed products, uniforms, and other branded materials for their hotel locations. We grew alongside Super 8 for the next 15 years until they were sold to what is now Wyndham Worldwide, an owner of multiple franchised, hospitality brands. We quickly expanded to meet the needs of their franchised hospitality brands and at the same time, added other national hotel brands as customers. We have continued to evolve our business model around maximizing efficiencies for our franchise customers, so they have more time to devote to the most important issues they face in their business. In 2015, we changed our name to Corporate Image Group to better reflect the diversity of our product offering. We are currently under the fourth generation of Pfeiffer family leadership and are one of the largest 100% Native-owned branded merchandise companies in the nation.

How did your relationship with Pathward come about?
Pathward invited Corporate Image Group to participate in their RFP to find a vendor to build and operate their company store. After a rigorous process where we provided pricing, services level commitments and interviews, we were chosen as Pathward’s partner for their new store. We worked very closely with Pathward team members Susan Witkowski, Adelisa Graca, Kristin Hoff, and Amy Budd through the RFP process and then through executing their vision for the new Pathward company store.

About Corporate Image Group
Corporate Image Group is an interconnected family of creative companies; a true collection of marketing experts, with passion for your brand. The company is located at 701 Enterprise Street North in Aberdeen, South Dakota. Learn more about Corporate Image Group at


Disclaimer: This article, including any referenced hyperlinks, is not an endorsement or recommendation by Pathward of any third party, products or services, trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise.


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