Whether it’s having a leading role in a pharmacy commercial or designing a poster, Jim Taggart’s easy-going personality puts everyone at ease. And since the COVID-19 pandemic started, it’s his friendly voice you hear on the phone when you call University Marketing and Communications. For his many talents, Taggart has been named the South Dakota State University’s Civil Service Employee of the Month for February.
An auto racing enthusiast and history buff, Taggart works as a graphic artist at UMC. He started at SDSU in in 1982 and worked here for two years before leaving. He returned in June 1990 but began working in the South Dakota Board of Regents system as a summer employee in 1970.
“Jim is a terrific collaborator, and it is a pleasure to work with him. I believe Jim represents our institutional values in his work and in his dealings with various constituencies across campus,” said J.D. Ackman, professor and director of theater in the School of Performing Arts. “I have known Jim for many years and have worked much more closely with him for at least the past decade or so. We collaborate on numerous projects including, but not limited to, theatre and dance production posters and programs, print ads and copy, digital ads, season brochures and other promotional materials for State University Theatre and Dance and Prairie Repertory Theatre.
“I admire Jim's expertise and opinions in creating the aforementioned materials. He approaches his work with an admirable balance of humor and professionalism. He is forgiving of my errors and occasional last-minute requests. He is open to and assists with significant changes in visual designs or overall campaigns,” Ackman continued.
David Reynolds, director of the School of Performing Arts, echoed Ackman’s thoughts.
“Jim is one of the most pleasant individuals on this campus. He brings a flexible, calm attitude to the projects he undertakes. The complexity of our publications often requires a dozen revisions as we solicit input from faculty and students. Jim has always been understanding of our need to include so many in the editing process,” Reynolds said. “We are appreciative of the creative choices he offers to us in our publications. He possesses the ability to take any project and make it a memento of the occasion. The School of Performing Arts depends on his talent and expertise to create high quality and professional programs for our concerts and conferences.”
All SDSU Employee of the Month selections are determined through a nomination process by the Civil Service Advisory Council. Each civil service employee of the month receives an appreciation monetary gift from the F.O. Butler Foundation. The trustees of the foundation recognize the importance of civil service employees and take this opportunity to thank them for their exemplary service.