Yote Notes

Yote Notes

Stay up-to-date on the most recent accomplishments and life events of fellow Yotes! View Yote Notes below by the category in which they were submitted.

  • Cody '16 and Rachel '17 (Meyer) Breen welcomed their second son, Hayden George, into the world on November 14, 2023. He is welcomed home by big brother Connor. Proud to pass on the love of the Yotes to our boys! (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Ryan and Gina '13, '15 O'Connor are expecting Yote #2 in November 2023. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Jennifer '12 and Ryan Murtha welcomed Aliyah to their family! Aliyah was born on March 6, 2023 and adopted on September 18, 2023. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Brooke '07, '10 and Chris '08 Schloss welcomed Frances Julia on June 8, 2023. She joins sisters Lucille and Josephine. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Alexa '12, '13 and Shea '12 Williams are welcoming a substitute for their relay team with baby #5, Dar Colette Williams, joining their family in May 2023. (Submitted Fall 2023).
  • Marcus and Ashley Dvorak '10 welcomed their son, James Michael, to the world on June 2, 2023. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Kelsey Warkenthien-Smith '14 and Peyton Smith '12 are expecting their second Yote baby in July 2023! It is a boy that will be joining 3 year old Yote girl-Mila! (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Vance '08 and Emily '08 Janak welcomed their third daughter, Evelyn Judith, into the world on March 18, 2023. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Andrew and Brittany (Lunstra) Yanish ‘16 welcomed their daughter Ruby Yanish on November 16th. She joins big sister Lucy! (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Adam and Tamarra (Roths) '07 Friedrichsen welcomed Reagan Joy to their family on January 3, 2023. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Rachelle Schmidt '18 and Brennan Schmidt '19 welcomed daughter Cierra Schmidt of Freeman, SD. (Submitted Fall 2022)
  • Peter Michael Mehlhaff was born to Joe '21 and Kaylyn Mehlhaff on September 20th, 2022. At birth he was 7 pounds 15 ounces and looks forward to being a Coyote! (Submitted Fall 2022)
  • Kaela '17 and Andrew '17 Schuiteman welcomed Dean Alexander into the world on November 5th, 2022! (Submitted Fall 2022)
  • Owen Simon Geraets was born on April 7, 2022 to Adam '11, '12 and Ashley (Simon) '10 Geraets. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Carolyn Rose-Janelle Petersen was born on March 27, 2022 to proud parents Malachi '17, '18 and Kaitlyn '18 Petersen. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Jennifer '16 and Andrew '19 Candela had their baby Yote on July 21, 2021! He came 2 months early and thrived in the NICU and is now home. (Submitted Fall 2021)

  • Morris "Rick" Beato '14 has been appointed to the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties of the American Physical Therapy Association. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Dawn Thomas '06 started as a Contract and Budget Planner for the Bureau of HIV, STI, and Hepatitis at the Department of Health and Human Services (IHHS) in September of 2023. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Tony McCord '02 was promoted to Director of Marketing for PREMIER Bankcard. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Jacquelynn Skotvold '00, '02 has been promoted from Membership & Marketing Associate to Manager, overseeing efforts for both ATM Industry Association (ATMIA) and ATM Security Association (ASA). Her new role includes spearheading ASA renewals and outreach while maintaining her dedication to ATMIA's marketing and membership. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Katelyn Conover '14, '22 has transitioned to the Montgomery's team and now serve as the Chief Marketing Officer. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Paul Krueger '04 began his role as President and CEO of Make-A-Wish Minnesota October 2, 2023. He lives in Minneapolis, MN. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Teryl L. "Teri" Dobbs '79 took retirement from the Mead Witter School of Music, University of Wisconsin-Madison, in May 2023. Throughout her time at UW-Madison, Dobbs taught undergraduate and graduate courses in music education, pedagogy for performers, and the Holocaust/genocide and the arts. On April 29, 2023, Dobbs was recognized by the Third Biennial Disability Studies in Music Education Symposium for her ground-breaking scholarship that introduced and integrated disability studies into music education: the inaugural recipient of the Teryl (Teri) L. Dobbs Keynote in Disability Studies and Music Education. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Mark Koopman '88, '93 has been the principal at Hanover Junior/Senior High in rural Colorado Springs, CO since 2021. During his time, he has also served as the interim superintendent during the 2022-23 school year. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Nate Janssen '21 is employed at Dells Auto in Dell Rapids, SD. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Kaycee Verlinde '22 successfully passed her license exam as a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW). (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Jason McFarland '96, '97, who has worked in the field of liturgy for more than two decades, has commenced as executive secretary to the Bishops Commission for Liturgy, also serving as director of the National Office for Liturgy. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • After 42 years as an educator in South Dakota Linda Stevens '77, '83 has transitioned to be the SDTLA Executive Director. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Victoria C. Hailey '87 has started a new position at Minnesota State University, Mankato as Assistant Professor of Marketing. She is also the co-advisor for both the Marketing and Professional Selling Clubs. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Jamie Dooley '96 will assume the role of Citibank, Sioux Falls, Site Head. He will take on this responsibility in addition to his role as Senior Vice President, Compliance Business Control Group Manager. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Kira Osborne '23 began work as as a treasury coordinator after graduation. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Samuel A. “Sam” Christensen '98 was appointed Clerk of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, effective June 18, 2023 by the Wisconsin Supreme Court. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Travis Hill '20 is moving from USD University Housing after 2 years to Ball State University to be an Area Coordinator for their Housing and Residence Life. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Nikolas Wilson '20 was recently promoted from reporter to morning anchor at KCAU 9 News. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Ange Johnson '21 was hired full-time as an Assistant Professor for the MHA program and Enrollment Coordinator at Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, IA. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Kevin Burr '81, '82, '89 has accepted a position as Deputy General Counsel for Optum/United Healthcare. (Submitted Spring 2023)

  • David Levavi '19 of Manchester, New Hampshire graduated from Touro University Worldwide in March 2024 with a Doctor of Health Science degree. His doctoral research focused on the development of habitual alcohol consumption-related, chronic nitric oxide-deficient hypertension in middle-aged non-Hispanic White men. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Seth Gerberding '20 has been working on his Ph.D. in mathematics at Texas A&M University with a focus in an numerical analysis and computational fluid dynamics. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Ryan Davis '21, '22 is pursing a Doctor of Education at Liberty University. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Tristan Heinze '20 is currently a PhD candidate at Drake University and began a career with the federal government. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Alycen O'Neal '21 earned a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from NWMS and will be starting a 3rd year of teaching 3rd grade in the fall. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Hannah Hovel '22 recently started in the Masters of Social Work Program through University of North Dakota. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Kerby Barnes '22 earned a Master's in American History online at Southern New Hampshire University. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Liv Korngable '22 is finishing up her first year of graduate school at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, MN and will receive her Doctorate of Physical Therapy in two years. (Submitted Spring 2023)

  • Kiana Dowdell '16 and Timmy Wood '19 were married on October 13, 2023 at The Atrium in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Since graduating with a Master of Social Work in 2022, Ryan Davis '21, '22 has married and relocated to Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Kelsey (Berger) Grady ‘20, ‘21 and Jacob Grady ‘19 were united in marriage on August 28, 2021. (Submitted Spring 2022)

  • Mike Berg '86 passed away on July 29, 2023 after living with Alzheimer's for 8+ years. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Roger Van Ommeren '61 passed away on February 9, 2023. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Dr. Dominic (Nick) Meylor '76, '79 passed away on June 2, 2022. (Submitted Summer 2022)
  • Gordon Wayne Segelke '59 passed away on March 21, 2022 in Des Moines, Iowa. He is survived by his wife, Barbara of West Des Moines, IA; and his daughters Susan Maass of Austin, TX, and Sheryl (John) Dutcher of Johnston, IA; four grandchildren and one great grand-daughter. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Stanley Merle Jones '59 passed away peacefully November 2, 2021, at the age of 88 due to Alzheimer's. He began college at the University of South Dakota, Vermillion; was interrupted by US Army stationing him at 5th Army Headquarters in Chicago. After serving in the Army Stan returned to South Dakota eager to finish his education. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Pat (Miller) Bell '55 passed away on January 2, 2022. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Gerald (Jerry) J. Alingh '55 of Des Moines, IA, passed away on Sunday, September 26, 2021, at Wesley Acres. He was an art instructor for two years and a lecturer for USD. (Submitted Fall 2021)

  • Craig Haugaard '14 became the 100th person in the world to run a half marathon on every continent when he finished a half marathon in Antarctica on March 21, 2024. (Submitted Spring 2024).
  • Dann Hurlbert '97 and his teenage daughter Kennedy published a YA and Christian fiction novel, "Suddenly Rural Girl." (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Todd J. Pokrywa '13 played in a Celebrity Shinny hockey game at Amalie Arena with former NHL All-Star Brian Bradley vs the first Captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning Paul Ysebaert. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Mike Hansen '74, '75 completed the annual RAGBRAI bike race across the state of Iowa, 480 miles. At the start of the race in Sioux City, they asked riders to wear a jersey from their college or high school. As a USD alum, Mike had on a USD jersey. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Robert "Bob" Giebink '80, '92 published the book "Rising in Glory: Poems from a Freed Soul" with Kharis Publishing in May 2023. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • John Albano '85 was recently featured in a Defense Visual Information Distribution Service (DVIDS) article. (Submitted Fall 2022)
  • David Colwell '75 wrote the Alma Mater “Forever Inver Hills” for Inver Hills Community College in Inver Grove Heights, a southern suburb of St Paul, MN (Submitted Summer 2022)
  • Leanne (Klute) Sparks '07 published "The Wrong Woman," a crime thriller with Crooked Lane Publishing (Penguin Random House) on February 8, 2022. The second book, "Every Missing Girl" will release in February 2023. (Submitted Summer 2022)
  • David Bush '95 recently published a new Extraordinary Life System (book, life planner, 90 day challenge). The free electronic version of the book and planner are available here. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Daschle Larsen '10 was featured in the cover story on virtual sales in the January issue of the Independent Agent magazine. Larsen, an Elk Point native, joined McKinney Olson Insurance in 2013 as a Risk Executive dealing with both commercial and personal lines. (Submitted Spring 2022)
  • Todd '85 and Patty '85 Pharis were featured in a Southern Living Magazine article. View the first page here and the second page here. (Submitted Fall 2021)
  • Beth MacDonald '78 published a novel entitled "A History of Forever." The first half of the book features USD, Vermillion and Sioux Falls. (Submitted Fall 2021)

  • Nichole Price '96, Senior Vice President of Risk, Process and Performance at Pathward, was recently named to American Banker’s prestigious list of the ‘Most Influential Women in Payments.’ The list celebrates senior executives who guide the future of the global payments industry and is an honor among a top banking media outlet. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Rev. Warren Egebo '72 was inducted into the National Gym Association Hall of Fame on Nov. 18, 2023. He has produced 37 NGA bodybuilding shows in 23 years. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • Jeb H. Clarkson '83, was named Chairman of the Board of Directors of Pioneer Bank & Trust at their 2023 annual meeting. With banking locations in Buffalo, Belle Fourche, Spearfish, Sturgis and Rapid City, SD, the bank was founded in Buffalo, SD as First State Bank in 1913 by F.M. Clarkson and H.W. Clarkson, his grandfather and great uncle. (Submitted Spring 2024)
  • On November 12, 2023, Todd J. Pokrywa '13 was a guest player in the Hockey Hall of Fame Hyundai Legends Classic held at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Canada as part of Induction Weekend. Todd played on Team Joe Nieuwendyk, coached by Hall of Famer Lanny McDonald, vs Team Adam Oates. His wife Cyndi was a guest coach for Team Oates. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Vic Raphael '68, '70 was honored with presentation of the Director of National Intelligence’s Distinguished Service Medal recognizing his exceptional service to our Nation during of his 50 years in the US Intelligence Community. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • David W. Friess, ‘96 BS, O.D., FAAO, received Salus University’s Alumni Association 2023 Public Service Award. Dr. Friess is currently Vice President of Global Medical Affairs at STAAR Surgical and helped launch Project MyVision, a charitable lens-based refractive surgery program. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • At the recent 2023 Barchart Hedge Awards Norman Haugaard '14 was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award for his "profound impact on the agricultural industry." (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • On September 30, 2023, Todd J Pokrywa '13 returned to Captain Team Viera in the Princess Margaret Road Hockey to Conquer Cancer tournament in Toronto, Canada which raised nearly $30,000 for the cause. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Mike Stevens '78 has been voted by his legislative colleagues the Speaker Pro Tempore of the South Dakota House of Representatives. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Dr. Kevin Kennedy '84 is the recipient for the 2022 Distinguished Professional Achievement Award for an undergraduate degree alumnus at his Alma Mater, Mount Marty University in Yankton, SD. An endowment has been established in his name at MMU, The Dr. Kevin Kennedy Endowment Scholarship. In January 2023 he completed a dream traveling to Antarctica. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • John Jenson '69 was elected to the Wisconsin Golf Hall of Fame for services as a volunteer and rules official and recognized for volunteer service to various community organizations. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Amber Hulse '21 was crowned Miss South Dakota USA 2023 on June 11. She is the 4th woman to be both Miss South Dakota and Miss South Dakota USA and will compete for Miss USA later this year. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Dr. Thomas Hokanson '03 was recently awarded a Mellon Graduate Hours Fellowship by the American Indian College Fund. He is a faculty member at Red Lake Nation College in Minnesota. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Tom Fritz '68, '71 was recently honored by the Pennington County Bar Association as the "Exceptional Lawyer of the Year for 2022, in recognition of "Integrity, Leadership and Exemplary Service to the Community and the Bar" (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Todd J Pokrywa '13 was the top fundraiser for the second year in a row at the Hockey Helps the Homeless Bay Street Tournament in Toronto Canada. He skated alongside NHL Alumni Georges Laraque, Christian Hanson and Lou Franceschetti. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Morris "Rick" Beato '14 was recognized with the Distinguished Mentor in Residency and Fellowship Education Award by the Academy of Physical Therapy Education. (Submitted Spring 2023)
  • Karrie Van Ravenswaay '07 was recognized as the Player Development Award winner for the 2022 season from the Nebraska Section PGA.
  • On October 1, 2022 Todd Pokrywa '13 captained Team Viera in the Princess Margaret Road Hockey to Conquer Cancer Tournament held in Vaughan, Ontario, Canada which featured approximately 140 teams and 1,500 participants. Todd was a top 10 fundraiser and participated in the Celebrities vs Fundraisers game which included NHL Alumni. (Submitted Fall 2022)
  • Morris Beato '14 has been recognized by the Florida Physical Therapy Association with the 2022 Award for Excellence in Academic Teaching. He is an Associate Professor at the University of Central Florida's Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. (Submitted Fall 2022)
  • James Payer II '12 received the "Excellence in Marketing" award from Simon Property Group and was Elected Chair of the Diplomat Committee for the Greater Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce. (Submitted Fall 2022)

  • Morris "Rick" Beato '14 was appointed as the Chair of the Neurologic Board Specialty Council of the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties. (Submitted Fall 2023)
  • Joseph Mehlhaff '21 was elected Board President of the Aberdeen Catholic School System. (Submitted Summer 2023)
  • Stephen Williamson '91, '00 is serving as the Chair-Elect for the South Dakota Humanities Council starting in 2023. (Submitted Fall 2022)

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