Dakota Days' Royalty ~ Miss and Mr. Dakota

The tradition of Dakota Days was established by University President Robert Slagle in 1914. First known as South Dakota Day, the Nov. 24, 1914 issue of The Volante proclaimed, "It is the first time that anything of the sort has ever been staged here. By all who witnessed it, it was pronouced a howling success." President Slagle brought the idea of Dakota Day with him from Brookings, where he had been instrumental in launching Hobo Day. Student Association President H.C. Mundt took up the proposition and organized the first Dakota Day Nov. 20, 1914. Fern Wassem '17 of Harrisburg was elected Miss Dakota by a student vote and rode the parade in a car decorated with red and white bunting. The honor of Mr. Dakota was added to the the Dakota Day tradition in 1986 with Karlton Adam '87 of Pierre being the first to bear that title.

Name Miss/Mr Dakota
Fern Wassem Bertelero 1914
Genevieve Kelley ORourke 1915
Pauline Sheppard Crawford 1916
Bertha Boller Bryan 1917
Hazel Clark Hyden 1918
Marie Leavitt Johnson 1919
Marian Pearce VanBuskirk 1920
Helen Morris Boub 1921
Mabel Brookman Crowder 1922
Alice Jackson McDowell 1923
Martha Goertz Hill 1924
Mary Sundsrtom Scallin 1925
Geneva Rosser Gorsuch 1927
Dorothy Mortimer Dunlap 1928
Evelyn Kyes Kruse 1929
Eva  Nelson 1930
Ruth Payne Fuller 1931
Virginia Pier Simpson 1932
Doris Morrissey Reininger 1933
Marian  Quirk 1934
Gerda McClintic Mason 1935
Gwenneth Artley Biersbach 1936
Elnora Drafahl Carrino 1937
Helen Jones Ryan 1938
Carolyn Frei Kittelson 1939
Maxine Chapman Becker 1940
Maxine  Johnson 1941
Marjorie Buck Brickson 1942
Thelma McGuire Ross 1943
Lorna Sharpe Leedy 1944
Janet Robinson Finnerty 1945
Barbara Wangsness Kurtis 1946
Donna Hodges Williams 1947
Mary Dake Watland 1948
Carolyn Cowles Levitt 1948
Joan Pearson Kelly 1949
Irene O'Connor Connors 1951
Trudy Hasse Nepstad 1952
Mary Mumford Wagner 1953
Mary McKeon Rath 1954
Betty Holmoe Pfeifle 1955
Ann Hasse Nelson 1956
Patricia Mickelson Adam 1957
Jane Shull Olson 1958
Ellen Hasse Buchanan 1959
Martha Clark Brost 1960
Tamara Ullyot Baker 1961
Beth Railsback McCaslin 1962
Linda Wilkie Struck 1963
Janet Baumann Larson 1964
Ruth Ellwein Powers 1965
Magnhild  Pettersen 1966
Ellen  Blassingham 1967
Gay Winters Zimmerman 1968
Peggy Goeken Pluimer 1969
Katherine Mullally Cink 1970
Vicky Vander Vorste King 1971
Karen Bielski Palmer 1972
Mary Ann Drenkhahn McCurdy 1973
Carolyn Lardinois English 1974
Mary  Johnson 1975
Ellengray Gutzman Kennedy 1976
Nancy Dwight Gallagher 1977
Jacqueline Haggar Haggar-Tuschen 1978
Mary  Enterman 1979
Mary Kellen Williams 1980
Carla Taplett Thomsen 1981
Debra Nellermoe Mortenson 1982
Barbara Hanten Struwe 1983
Patricia Bernard Pharis 1984
Susan  Wade 1985
Paula Hochhalter Clausen 1986
Karlton  Adam 1986
Julie  Brandsma 1987
Scott  Jones 1987
Rhonda VanLaecken Pape 1988
Robert  Stack 1988
Sarah Adam Adam Axtman 1989
Michael  Feddersen 1989
Jill Anderson Hieb 1990
Robert  LaFollette 1990
Cynthia Hart Mickelson 1991
Robert  Hollan 1991
Julie Jarding Norton 1992
Steven  Ring 1992
Jennifer  Dice 1993
Kirk  Haverkamp 1993
Tansy Pitcher Forbes 1994
Steven  Stalzer 1994
Mindy  Glover 1995
Jason  Conley 1995
Gertrude Cronin Mayer-Hiss 1996
Annie Gillis Gillis-Kleibecker 1996
Michael  Koehler 1996
Camela Clark Theeler 1997
Brendan  Johnson 1997
Mary Almquist Hotzler 1998
Jason  Schulte 1998
Jacquelyn Dice Johnson 1999
Matthew  Mayer 1999
Tara  Creighton 2000
Kimberly Van Deventer Lanham 2000
Ross  Wright 2000
Meghan  Anderson 2001
Mark  Bain 2001
Betsy Eide Sage 2002
Joseph  Holt 2002
Emily  Horner 2003
Trenton  Custis 2003
Tara Lammers Miller 2004
Nathan  Becker 2004
Kate  Miles 2005
Eric  Omdahl 2005
Kimberly Smith Smith-Talcott 2006
Frank  Leibfarth 2006
Joshua  Cope 2007
Rachel  Svartoien 2007
Mary  Fitzgibbons 2008
Alex  Smith 2008
Anne  Grady 2009
Patrick  Siegling 2009
Molly  Mack 2010
Dzenan  Berberovic 2010
Alexa  Duling 2011
James  Payer II 2011
Alissa VanMeeteren  2012
Brenan Tjelmeland 2012
Anna Hyronimus 2013
Gavin Pochop 2013


Miss Dakota Float, 1929


Dakota Days Parade, 1929


Dakota Days Game. 1929


Miss Dakota, 1939


Dakota Days Football Game


Miss Dakota, 1944


Homecoming Parade, 1958


Dakota Days Game, 1966


Miss Dakota & Her Court, 1968

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