Alumni Spotlight - Phil D. Johnson, Assistant Coach for
the Utah Jazz
his time as an assistant coach
at Utah State,
Phil D. Johnson has enjoyed a long road of success in
the world of basketball.
a native of Grace, Idaho, began his sports career at USU.
He lettered in both track and basketball during
the early 1960s while earning a bachelor’s degree in physical
education (BS '63). Some of the highlights of his
playing days were helping the 1962 and 1963 Aggie basketball
teams advance to the NCAA Tournament. Johnson served as
captain of the 1963 squad, averaging 10.7 points and 7.6
playing days behind him, Johnson turned to coaching, serving
as an assistant to LaDell Andersen while earning his master’s
degree (MS '65). From USU, the young coach traveled
to Weber State
University, again as an assistant
coach, this time to Dick Motta. Eventually, Johnson
became head coach at Weber State, guiding the team to
a 68-15 record, three Big Sky Championships, and three
consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament.
Johnson moved on to professional
basketball, assuming the head coaching duties for the
Kansas City/Omaha Kings. In only his second season
there, he earned Coach of the Year as he guided the Kings
to their first playoff berth in seven seasons.
was during the 1977-78 season that Johnson first teamed
up with Jerry Sloan. The two coached together in
Chicago until Sloan left the team. It wasn't until
1988 that they were reunited as coaches for the Utah Jazz.
Coach Johnson's home has been with the Jazz ever
Phil Johnson hasn’t forgotten
his roots at Utah State. His wife, Ann, and sons,
Mitchel and Nathan also attended USU. Coach Johnson
was recognized by Utah State for his achievements when
he was honored as Alumnus of the Year in 1997.
Founders Day Award Recipients
As part of the Utah State
University Founders Day celebration, the Alumni Association
held a dinner and awards ceremony on Saturday, March 6.
Five outstanding Aggies were honored as part of the awards ceremony.
Each recipient was given a crystal bowl award, furnished in
part by the O.C. Tanner Company of Salt Lake City.
Alumnus Award Recipients
D. Laub earned his Bachelor
of Science Degree in Communications from USU before eventually
becoming President and CEO of Cache Valley Electric Company.
Under his direction, the company has become the 39th largest
electrical contractor in the nation. In 1999, Mr. Laub
was recognized by Ernst and Young as Utah Entrepreneur of the
Year. He has also served as Vice President of the Sunshine
Terrace Board of Directors and Chairman of the Development Committee.
Over the years, his service to USU has been invaluable.
He served as President of the Big Blue Club’s Board of
Directors and has been a member of the Gamma Kappa Chapter of
the Sigma Chi Fraternity. In 1985, he was a member of
the Executive Committee of Cache County Republicans, as well
as co-chair of the Northern Utah Governor’s Club from 1986 to
Andersen began his college
basketball career as a student at Utah
where he earned Honorable Mention All American, All Conference
guard, and Team Captain. He also served as Vice President
of Sigma Chi Fraternity, as a member of the Student Council,
and as a member of the Blue Key National Honor Society.
Mr. Andersen competed in the Olympic Trials in New
York City in 1952 before beginning
his college coaching career at the University
in 1956. In 1961, he returned
to USU, where he was Head Basketball Coach for 10 years, leading
the Aggies to six post-season tournament appearances.
After two years of coaching professionally, he returned to become
Athletic Director at USU. Some of his accomplishments include
raising funds, enlarging the stadium, and establishing a women’s
athletic department. After 10 years as Athletic Director,
he left to become Head Coach at BYU for three years. For
his achievements, he was inducted into the Utah Sports Hall
of Fame and named one of the Top 100 Most Accomplished People
in the State of Utah,
Service Award Recipients
C. Christensen graduated
from Utah State
1946 with a degree in Clothing and Textiles. Since that
time, she has been a devoted community
organizer, volunteer and leader. Mrs. Christensen established
the Cache Volunteer Pool in Logan
to provide enrichment opportunities
for students. It was for this effort that she was awarded
the Carnation Silver Bowl Community Service Award. She
organized and served as President of the Utah Quilt Guild, planned
and funded the Deseret Hospital
with her husband, and served as President of the Alliance
for the Varied Arts, as well as many
other examples of her compassionate service and sense of community.
H. Pitcher has dedicated
himself in service to Utah
and the University. He earned his Bachelor of Science
Degree in Business Administration, followed by his graduate
studies in Economics. Mr. Pitcher began his work at Blue
Cross and Blue Shield of Utah in 1967. He recently retired
as President/CEO, and Chairman of the Board. He has been
a member of the Utah State Board of Education, the Utah State
University Foundation Board, USU’s College
Advisory Board, and the USU Board
of Trustees, where he served as Chairman. Through the establishment
of a scholarship fund to aid College
of Business students, he and his wife became members of the
Old Main Society. Mr. Pitcher is also a Lifetime Sustaining
Member of the USU Alumni Association and currently serves on
the Board of Regents.
F. Gillmor learned the value
of hard work while growing up on her family’s ranch. After
her mother suffered a stroke and her father passed away, she
was responsible for milking 17 cows and tending to 2000 chickens
each day before boarding the school bus. Today, after
her husband’s death, she owns and operates the thousands of
acres known as the Lone Pine Ranch. She spends her time
volunteering at the local 4-H Club, and fighting for the rights
of landowners as well as the preservation of open space.
Mrs. Gillmor has given generously to several educational institutions
including USU, the Utah Boy’s Ranch, and UVSC, where she was
awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. She has
established a scholarship here at USU for the descendents of
Summit County Alumni, is a member of the Old Main Society and
a Lifetime Sustaining Member of the Alumni Association.
Head to Tournament as Top Seed
Utah State Men’s Basketball Team ended its historic conference
season with a win over Idaho,
bringing their league record to 17-1. They head into the
Big West Tournament as the number one seed and Big West co-champions.
The Aggies also finish ranked 21 on the ESPN Coaches
Poll and 22 on the AP. This is the first season the team
has been nationally ranked since the 1971 season.
had three players earn first-team
All-Big West honors, while a fourth player earned second-team
all-league honors for the first time in school history.
Seniors Mark Brown and Cardell Butler, and sophomore Nate Harris
all earned first-team All-Big West honors, while junior Spencer
Nelson was named to the league's second team.
Utah State's three first-team
All-League honors is the most by a Big West school since UNLV
had four players earn first-team honors following the 1990-91
Farewell to a Teaching Icon
lost a beloved teaching
icon when Thomas Lee Bahler
passed away at his home on February
16, 2004 .
the first Physiology and Anatomy courses he began teaching at
Utah State Agriculture College in 1949, to his retirement from
Utah State University in 1990, Professor Bahler helped foster
a legacy of success that continues to this day. During
his years at the University, an estimated 340 students went
on to become physicians or dentists.
Even after his retirement, Professor
Bahler’s work is still paying off. Last year, 85% of USU
students who applied to medical school were accepted.
Dental school admission rates at the University also exceed
the national average.
and the Friends of the Utah State University Medical and Dental
Programs are planning an event to honor Thomas Bahler’s legacy.
Professor Bahler will be remembered in a ceremony at the Little
America Hotel in Salt Lake City on Friday, June 4, 2004.
If you would like to attend the event, contact the College of
Science for more information at (435)797-2488.
Commercial Named Best in Nation
Communications, a market research firm specializing in colleges
and universities, named USU as the winner in the 2003 “Best
Campus TV Commercial Contest”. The 60 second ad focuses
on the University’s contributions to space exploration.
The spot highlights the fact that Utah
students send more experiments into space than any other university
in the world.
Produced in only 19 days, the ad
is especially remarkable considering the cost added up to only
$4,500. Ordinarily, such a commercial would have cost
around $20,000. The amazingly low cost can be attributed
to the countless hours of work by students and faculty at Utah
winning commercial is part of the Public Relations and Marketing
Office’s plan to revamp USU’s image. Already, work is
being started on next year’s commercial which deals with Utah
water research programs.
Benefits Package for Alumni Sustaining Members
Utah State University Alumni Association is proud to offer a
greatly expanded benefits and discounts package for all Sustaining
Members. Here are just a few of the exciting offers:
more than 40 years, Park City Mountain Resort has been one of
the nation's best ski areas. Enjoy over 3,300 acres of
groomed runs and terrain parks. Now you can ski the best
for less! Sustaining Members can purchase an adult lift
ticket for $49 (limit of two per day) plus a child's ticket
for $30 (limit of two). Show your card and purchase tickets
at the ticket window. For more information on Park City
Mountain Resort, visit www.parkcitymountain.com
near beautiful Bear Lake, the Blue Water Resort offers a host
of summer activities. Discounts are available on rooms,
condos, and camping. Need something to do once you've
booked your room? Blue Water also has discounts available
on golf, Waverunner and boat rentals. View the gorgeous
scenery at www.bearlake.com
on a trip? How does 10-25% off nationwide car rentals
and hotel rooms sound? Sustaining Members receive discounts
on a large number of travel services. For all the details,
the gorgeous and challenging Logan River Golf Course. A special
2-for-1 admission for 18 holes with the rental of a golf cart
is available to Sustaining Members. Limit 2 per customer per
year. Check out the website at Logan-River-Golf-Course
These new discounts join a host
of other benefits, such as special rates at the University Inn
and rental of the David B. Haight Alumni Center, savings on
select USU Athletics tickets, plus discounts to the Old Lyric
Repertory Theatre and at the USU Bookstore.
To view all of the benefits and
discounts, or to become a Sustaining Member, go to www.usu.edu/alumni
and visit the Benefits and Services page.
Alumni Job Board
Don't forget to check out
the new Alumni Job Board. This free service is provided
by USU Alumni Relations. Make sure you take advantage
of this opportunity to post your resume and search the growing
number of job listings. To access the Job Board, visit
the Alumni Relations home page at www.usu.edu/alumni
and click on Aggie Job Board.
to the Big West Tournament but forgot to pick up your Game Day
T-Shirt? No problem! The USU Bookstore and Athletics Vice
President, Tyler Olsen,
will be selling shirts at the Pre-Game Party in Anaheim.
Show your support and join the sea of blue as the Aggies take
on the best teams in the Big West Conference.
to the Buzzer
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
Student Alumni Association News:
Student Alumni Association Honored
The Association of Student
Advancement Programs recently honored the Utah State University
Student Alumni Association as Organization of the Year for District
Seven. This is the second win for USU, their last award
coming in 2002.
Cache County Winter Golf Tournament
The Cache County Aggie Chapter’s
4th Annual Winter Golf Tournament was a huge success.
All who braved the snow had a great time. The tournament,
held on Old Main Hill, raised $2,000 to be awarded as scholarships
to Cache County students.
highlight the University’s remarkable achievements in space
exploration, USU invites alumni and friends to attend a Presidential
Lecture and Reception on Friday, April 2, 2004. The event
will be held at the National Press Club in Washington
Experts from the Space Dynamics Lab and NASA will join with
President Kermit Hall to provide a fascinating look at USU’s
contributions in space and America’s
future in the cosmos.
more information, contact the Utah State University Alumni Association
at (800) 291-2586 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Women's Basketball Headed to Tournament
their first season of play in 17 years, the Aggie Women’s Basketball
Team is headed to Anaheim. USU finished 5-13 in league
play, earning them the eighth-seed in the
Big West Tournament.
think this validates having women's basketball at Utah
and shows that we are going to be competitive from the start,”
said Head Coach Raegan Pebley. “We have everyone coming
back next season and this will give us something to build on."
Aggies will face the fifth-seeded Long
on Wednesday, March 10th.
Aggie Throws for the Olympics
Parker, former standout Track & Field Star at Utah
made a big mark in the USA National Indoor Championship competition.
He took the title in the Weight Throw, setting two personal
bests of 75’ and 76’ ¾”.
a 4-time All-American in the Weight and Hammer Throw at USU,
as well as All-American in the Discus. Previously,
Parker won the National Outdoor Title in the Hammer (July 2003).
Next up is the USA Olympic Trials in Sacramento in July. Pending
the outcome, James will be headed to Athens in August to compete
in the Olympic Games.
Romney Stadium Renovation
State University’s Athletics Department presented their proposed
renovation of Romney Stadium to the Board of Trustees on March
5, 2004. The project is designed to be completed in three
separate, yet interlocking, phases over the next few years,
beginning this spring with the implementation of a new synthetic
project’s scope will greatly increase the usage and utility
of the 35 year old structure and address the immediate safety,
health and sanitation issues. In addition, the renovation
will increase the capacity of the University to provide student
athletes the adequate facilities to meet their individual academic
and athletic goals.
Included in the renovation is also a plan to upgrade the east
side of Romney Stadium in order to enhance the game-day atmosphere
for students and friends. The project calls for two additional
student-entrance gates at different locations, thereby tripling
the current location for students to enter. The project
is also programmed to vastly increase the number of restrooms
and concession locations throughout the stadium for fan convenience.
Once completed, Romney Stadium will house new training and
weight room facilities, the football locker room, press box,
office, football offices, satellite bookstore, equipment
room, and the USU Athletic Hall of Fame.
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 email@example.com.
May 12-21, 2004 - (rescheduled from September 2003)
more information, visit www.usu.edu/alumni/china.html
or contact Scott Olson at (435) 797-2055.
nine days aboard the Splendor of the Seas and explore
the exiting ports at Barcelona, Spain; Monte Carlo/Cannes,
France; Florence/Pisa, Italy; Rome, Italy; Naples,
Italy; and Valletta, Malta. Inside cabin prices
begin at $2299.00 per person, departing from Salt
to the sights and sounds of London and the surrounding
area with this exciting package. Planned tours include
Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, the Tower
of London, Stratford Upon Avon, a night at the theatre
and much more. You may also extend your vacation
with an optional tour in Scotland at the end of
our London adventure! Prices begin at $1369.00 (land