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Utah State

November 2003

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In This Issue:







David and Diann SantUSU Alumni Spotlight - David G. Sant

David Sant believes in supporting the institutions that prepared him for his highly successful career in the telecommunications and computer industries.  He says the future of technology-based companies relies on solid technical education programs like the bachelor's and masterís degree programs he enjoyed at Utah State University.  David and his wife, Diann, are major donors to the new Engineering Building and have a history as generous supporters of the College of Engineering.

Utah State University is not the only Cache Valley institution to benefit from the Santsí philanthropy.  David and Diann made a significant contribution to the library in Preston, Idaho, where they grew up.  The couple met at Utah State University when David was an electrical and computer engineering student.  They lived in student housing, which was little more than an old Army barracks, while David studied his master's degree. 

David has over 35 years experience in the telecommunications and computer industry.  He has worked for IBM, Rolm, VMX, Stratacom, and numberous other start-ups.  He was a founder in two start-up companies.  He has specialized in newly funded companies in voice and data communications.  As the VP of Sales and Director of Sales, he has built over 12 national sales organizations.   Now semi-retired, he consults for new firms that are seeking venture capital. 

Trustees Chair is New Lieutenant Governor - Gayle McKeachnie
A former Utah legislator and current chairman of Utah State University's Board of Trustees, Gayle McKeachnie has been named Utah's lieutenant governor.  As former Gov. Mike Leavitt leaves Utah office to run the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, new presiding officers have been announced. The appointment of Gayle McKeachnie, 60, was announced by former Lt. Gov. Olene Walker, who assumed the role of Utah's governor last week when Leavitt formally resigned.  McKeachnie plans to continue his role as chairman of USU's Board of Trustees.  He was the majority whip in Utah's House of Representatives in 1985 and 1986.

USU Accepts WAC Invitation
Utah State University has accepted an invitation for its athletics teams to become members of the Western Athletic Conference.  The invitation was extended by the chair of the WAC Board of Directors and WAC Commissioner after the Board unanimously voted to issue the invitations.

New Mexico State University was also issued an invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference and accepted that invitation. Both USU and NMSU will begin competing in the league in 2005-06 with the exception of USU's women's gymnastics program, which will continue to compete in the Western Gymnastics Conference.  Until 2005-06, USU's teams will continue to compete in their respective conferences (football in the Sun Belt Conference, gymnastics in the Western Gymnastics Conference, indoor track and field in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation and the remainder of its sports in the Big West Conference).

Utah State fields teams in 16 different sports including seven men's sports of basketball, cross country, football, golf, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, and tennis; and nine women's sports of basketball, cross country, gymnastics, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball.

MemorialVeterans Honored
In anticipation of the day our nation honors veteran soldiers, Aerospace and Military Science at Utah State University have scheduled significant events.  Beginning November 8 with the 23rd Army band and a military ball on the USU campus, soldiers past and present came together to enjoy social activities and camaraderie.  In conjunction with the ball, on Veterans Day November 11, from 11 a.m. Ė 2 p.m., the Cache Valley Veteranís Memorial will be unveiled and dedicated in front of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in remembrance of all faithful veterans. VIPís in attendance will include the Honorable James V. Hansen, Maj. General Barney Rawlings, and former USU President, George Emert. The dedication will be preceded by an F-16 fly over.

To conclude the weekís activities, the 23rd Army band will be featured along with the Sky View and Mountain Crest high school choirs in a concert held on the night of the 12th at 7:00 p.m. at the Kent Concert Hall.  As part of the activities, a piece of the Pentagon will be presented to the ROTC by the Department of Defense.  In conclusion, on November 13, the Air Force Band of the Rockies will provide instrumental numbers from 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. at the Ellen Eccles Theatre in honor of those who served.   All events are free, and everyone is invited.  For more information contact 435-797-6231.

Rhonda and Steve WileySteve Wiley - Night Runner
When the Utah State football team goes on the road, their equipment and Steve Wiley have already paved the way.  For nine years, this former Viet Nam veteran with a heart of gold has been driving his GMC truck, racking up miles for USU.  Hooked up to a goose-neck trailer that is covered in Aggie logos (compliments of George Zimmerman), Steve donates his time and the wear and tear on his vehicle all because of a love for the Utah State Aggies.   Working four ten-hour days at Thiokol enables Wiley to be at the stadium Thursday night before an away game.  After practice the trailer is loaded and he's on his way.  Always accompanied by his son-in-law, Brian Lee, and at least one equipment manager, Steve has logged thousands of miles (over 10,000 so far this year) and driven to cities that include Lincoln, Albuquerque, Seattle, Fresno, Manhattan (Kansas), Reno, Corvallis, and even Lubbock, Texas.  Sometimes his wife, Rhonda, or son, Jeremy, go along for the ride.  Any destination too far away, Steve and the equipment travel on the chartered plane.  "Anything over 1200 miles doesn't give me time to get there," Wiley explains. 

Dubbed "Night Runner" by many, including the team, it all began because of a friendship with Head Athletic Trainer, Dale Mildenberger.  When faced with the problem of too much equipment weight on a chartered flight to Las Cruces, N.M., Wiley agreed to drive it.  Since his son, Jeremy, was going to school on an Athletics scholarship as a student trainer, Steve thought this would be a good way to give back what he could.  He had no idea he would still be giving nine years later and counting.  Not only is Wiley an E.T.S. - Equipment Transportation Specialist, a professional title given him by Mildenberger, but he's often one of the first Aggie fans to offer encouragement.  After each game, win or lose, Steve takes an equipment bag from each player and hands out a box lunch and a hug.  The Aggie reply:  "Drive safe!"


2003 Hall of Honor
During last month's Homecoming Week ceremony, The Hall of Honor for Utah State University's Alumni Association expanded by five with the addition of the following long-time, loyal Aggies:


MarkMark Dennis '79, a Roosevelt, Utah, veterinarian, who has provided leadership and continual service to the Alumni Associationís Uintah Basin Chapter.
LundahlCarl Lundahl '67, Alumni Association president and Utah State trustee from 1990-2001, and his wife, Mary Sue '64, a 30 year kindergarten teacher and finalist for Cache County Teacher of the Year. Lundahl is a retired Thiokol chemist.
BarryBarry Moore '65, insurance agency president who helped develop the San Diego Chapter into the dynamic organization it is today.
CathyCathy Van Skyhawk '63, former Alumni Association president and trustee who has been a prominent and dedicated force in the development of the association's Salt Lake Chapter.  Cathy is a retired financial planner who took up the triathlon at age 50 and won a bronze medal in the Huntsman World Games Triathlon.

Back to the Buzzer
The 1910 Utah Agricultural College (UAC) Military Band


Utah State University Alumni Relations sponsors many exciting events throughout the year. To keep informed about the most current ones, visit www.usu.edu/alumni/events.html often.


Chapter News:

Box Elder County
On November 15, from 10:00 a.m. until 12:00 noon, Box Elder County Aggie Chapter will host a pre-game party at the Alumni Center.   Cost per person will be $12 and will include the pregame meal and a ticket to the USU vs. Troy State football game.  Door prizes will also be given. Please R.S.V.P. to the Alumni Office at 1-800-291-2586 (locally 797-2055) by November 13.

Utah County
Come socialize with other Aggie friends in small groups around Utah County at Aggie Alumni Scholarship Dinners.  The cost is $25 per couple.  The next scheduled dinner will be hosted by Brent and JoLene Bunnell on November 14.  Please call 801-796-8235 if you're interested in attending.  A January gathering is also being planned.

New York CityNew York City
An organizational meeting will be held November 12 at 7:00 p.m. (site to be determined). Anyone interested in being involved with helping to organize the New York City Chapter, contact Patty Halaufia at 1-800-291-2586.

Washington D.C.
President Kermit L. Hall will lecture at the National Press Club on the JFK Assassination Friday, November 14, 2003 at 6:00 p.m.  Did investigators of the murder of President John F. Kennedy get it right? A week before the 40th anniversary of the assassination, President Hall fills in the blanks. He was one of five Americans appointed by President Clinton and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to the Kennedy Assassination Records Review Board. Please join President Hall for a presidential lecture and reception at the National Press Club.

For more information, call 1-800-291-2586.  You may also contact the D.C. Alumni Chapter President, Michelle Merrill, at 703-369-0834.  Please R.S.V.P. to 1-800-291-2586.

The Washington D.C. Aggie Chapter will also host a high school open house on November 15.  Please call 1-800-291-2586 for details.


Jessica Freeman and Tracee KenningtonWomen's Basketball Picked 10th In Big West Preseason Polls
Utah State University's women's basketball was picked 10th in the Big West preseason coaches and media polls. The 10th-place projection doesn't come as much of a surprise as USU will be starting its first year of women's basketball since the program was discontinued after the 1986-87 year due to state-wide budget reductions. 

"I'm not surprised at all with the media and coaches projecting us to finish last," said head coach Raegan Pebley . "I think this will help us work harder and hopefully we can sneak-up on some people."  USU's roster is void of any seniors and lists just two juniors, three sophomores and nine freshmen, giving it the distinction of being the third-youngest team in the nation.  USU will look to the leadership of the four players who spent last season on campus as red-shirts.   Sophomore Jessica Freeman , Junior Stephanie Peterson-Grant, Junior Virginia Jennings and Freshman Brittany Tressler all spent the 2002-03 season enrolled at USU and became familiar with Coach Pebley's system.  "I think our team will thrive on the challenge of overcoming the odds against us," said Freeman. "This will give us a chance to put the pressure on other teams.  We have nothing to lose."

Utah State's first game of the season is Nov. 21 against Southern Utah. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m.  Season tickets are available through USU's website at www.UtahStateAggies.com or by calling the ticket office toll free at 1-888-U-STATE-1, locally 435-797-0305, or in person at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.

Check out utahstateaggies.com for the latest news and information about Aggie Athletics.  If you would like to receive electronic updates from Athletics, e-mail Joli Hatch at joli.hatch@usu.edu.

Travel Opportunities

China China
May 12-21, 2004 - (rescheduled from September 2003)

To find more information, visit www.usu.edu/alumni/china.html or contact Scott Olson at (435) 797-2055.

Machu Peru: Empire of the Incas
March 17-24, 2004
This exciting tour includes visits to Lima, Cozco, the Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Manu National Reserve and the Amazon. 
Prices begin at $2299.00 per person, double occupancy.  To find more information visit www.usu.edu/alumni/peru.html or contact Scott Olson at (435) 797-2055. 
London BridgeEngland and Scotland
Fall 2004
Don't miss the spectacular sights of London, Oxford, Stratford Upon Avon, Bath, Stonehenge, and more.  Exact dates and pricing will be available at a later date.


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