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SDSU honors 4 professional staff members

South Dakota State University’s Professional Staff Advisory Council recently honored four of its members at its annual meeting.

Rebecca Peterson received the Rising Star Award, which goes to an employee within three years of initial hire, while Tianna Beare, Matt Halvorson and Jeff Holm were selected as Outstanding Professional Award recipients. Each honoree receives a plaque and a cash award.

Rebecca Peterson, Housing & Residential Life Director
Rebecca Peterson

Peterson, the director of housing and residential life, has been a key asset in the university’s adoption of policies and procedures surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Nominated by Dean of Students Toby Uecker, Peterson is known for consistently brings new ideas and a fresh approach to work groups, task forces and committees.





Tianna Beare
Tianna Beare


Beare, the program manager and interim director for the Ethel Austin Martin Program, has played a major role in the program’s success over the past 20 years and has seen SDSU be recognized by the National Institutes of Health as a top performer in many areas. Beare was listed as bringing a creative approach to program solving in her nomination by Bonny Specker, who recently retired after serving as the Ethel Austin Martin endowed chair of human nutrition and director. One example was when she learned Microsoft Access on the fly to ensure all of the program’s employees receive appropriate training and information to help set clear expectations and successful outcomes.



Matt Halvorson professional portrait.
Matt Halvorson

Halvorson, the digital media assistant coordinator with University Marketing and Communications, is the creative mind beyond several videos on campus and is often tasked with listening to a broad range of ideas, narrowing the discussions into a concise plan and executing that work to the satisfaction of stakeholders. Nominated by University Event Coordinator Jamison Lamp, Halvorson was cited for his work with JacksRBack committee where confidentiality, high standards and strong attention to detail were of the utmost importance, and he rose to that occasion with his work on COVID-19-related videos.




Jeff Holm, 2021 PSAC award recipient
Jeff Holm

Holm, the senior associate athletic director for facilities and operations with the SDSU athletic department, is known for his relationship-building and servant leadership approach. Nominated by Athletic Director Justin Sell, Holm was tasked with leading a facilities group that has been forced to write its own manual on how to operate, adapt, respond and continuously improve functions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

About the Professional Staff Advisory Council
The SDSU Professional Staff Advisory Council fosters the collegial exchange of ideas, advises senior administration and promotes the interests of professional staff, which has an essential role in the attainment of the university’s mission, goals and objectives. The council meets regularly on the second Monday of each month, and encourages participation of all professional staff on campus. More information on the Council can be found via InsideState.