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Who We Are

Honors Administration

Rebecca C. Bott-Knutson - Dean

Since she joined SDSU in 2009, Dr. Bott-Knutson has held extension, teaching, and research appointments in the Department of Animal Science and the Fishback Honors College. She has contributed to study abroad opportunities for students in China, Central America, and Ireland and has taught fourteen different courses at SDSU. She received her B.S. in Animal Science from the University of Missouri-Columbia, her M.S. in Animal Science from University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and Ph.D. in Biomedical Science from Colorado State University. Dean Bott-Knutson provides leadership for the Honors College and teaches Honors Orientation, Honors Study Abroad, and Senior Seminar. She enjoys spending time with her husband Kyle, her son Roly, and their many animals.

Hanna Holmquist - Academic Advisor/Coordinator of Student Services

Hanna graduated from SDSU in 2013 with her bachelor’s degree in psychology and Honors College distinction. She went on to complete her master’s degree in communication studies from SDSU, and in 2015 she was hired as the first academic advisor for the Honors College. Hanna teaches HON 100 (Honors Orientation) and has led Honors study abroad experiences to Ireland, Indonesia, and the Netherlands and Belgium. She is also involved on campus with the Common Read Committee and LeadState, and she serves as an advisor for the Honors College Student Organization. Hanna enjoys puzzles, NPR, coffee, and taking road trips with her husband, Tyler.

Cadi Kadlecek - Coordinator of Programs, Events and Promotions 

Cadi Kadlecek joined the Honors College team in May as the Coordinator of Programs, Events and Promotions. She earned her undergraduate degree in Communication Studies and Political Science from Hastings College in Nebraska and her M.S. in Communication Studies from Illinois State University.  She is enthusiastically overjoyed to be joining the Fishback Honors College family. Her duties include Honors College strategic communication, planning Honors College events, and working closely with students. Her passion is helping others, which is likely why she continues to find herself working with students. When she isn't in a classroom or meeting with a student, she enjoys time with her family and a good book. 

Sandy Newman - Secretary 

Sandy has been employed at South Dakota State University for 19 years. She was initially hired as the secretary for the Office for Diversity and Equal Opportunity where her responsibilities included coordinating the annual Festival of Cultures. She then took the position of secretary for the Honors College. Her duties include, but aren’t limited to, event planning, student audits, sending important emails on behalf of the Honors College (keep an eye on your Jacks email account!), and scheduling meetings and appointments for/with Dr. Bott-Knutson. Sandy enjoys gardening, fishing, needlework, and watching football....she’s an avid Minnesota Vikings fan. She also roots for her favorite college team, the SDSU Jackrabbits! Stop in and say hello and admire her ever-growing duck collection!

SDSU Foundation Partner

Keith Mahlum

Keith is the Vice President for Development for the SDSU Foundation. He previously served as the Associate Athletic Director and Development Director for the SDSU Athletic Department. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in health, physical education and recreation/sports management from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse in 1991. He earned his master’s degree in health, physical education and recreation/athletic administration from SDSU in 1993. Keith partners with Honors on key initiatives. 

Honors Faculty Committee

The Honors College Faculty Committee serves to advise the Dean and provide overall direction and policy input for the college and its programs. In addition, they serve as resource persons for Honors College students in their academic colleges and work with the Dean to advocate on the students’ behalf and enhance the Honors College experience for faculty and students. Current members of this committee include:

  • Ross Abraham – Jerome J. Lohr College of Engineering
  • Valerie Albert – College of Education & Human Sciences
  • Matthew Badura – Wintrode Student Success Center
  • Shelly Brandenburger – College of Nursing
  • Bob Fourney – Jerome J. Lohr College of Engineering
  • Fathi Halaweish – College of Natural Sciences
  • Barb Kleinjan – College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Madhav Nepal – College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences
  • Rosie Nold – College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences
  • Om Perumal – College of Pharmacy & Allied Health Professions
  • Greg Peterson – College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences


Honors Departmental Representatives

Honors Department Representatives are appointed in each of the academic programs. These representatives serve as advocates and resource persons for Honors College students in their respective departments. They include:

  • Patricia Ahmed – Sociology & Rural Studies
  • Valerie Albert Counseling & Human Development
  • Sanjeev Anand – Dairy Science
  • Geoffrey Bonvallet – Physics
  • Volker Brozel – Biology & Microbiology
  • Evren Celik Wiltse – History, Political Science, Philosophy, and Religion
  • Chris Chase – Veterinary & Biomedical Sciences
  • David Clay Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science
  • Kay Cutler – Teaching, Learning, and Leadership
  • Rocky Dailey – School of Communication & Journalism
  • David Davis – Economics
  • Matt Diischer Housing & Residential Life
  • Molly Enz – Modern Languages & Global Studies
  • Kathie Erdman Becker Experiential Learning
  • Anne Fennell Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science
  • Donna Flint – Mathematics and Statistics
  • Bob Fourney – Electrical Engineering
  • Jessica Garcia Fritz – Architecture
  • Teresa Hall – Construction and Operations Management
  • Dan Hansen – College of Pharmacy & Allied Health Professions
  • Greg Heiberger – Biology and Microbiology
  • Kathy Heylens – Intercollegiate Athletics
  • Yung Huh - Physics
  • Allen Jones – Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Michael Keller – English
  • Barb Kleinjan – Communication Studies and Theatre
  • Linda Kott Briggs Library
  • Maribeth Latvis, Natural Resource Management
  • Yi Liu – Computer Science
  • Jason McEntee College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Greg Michna Mechanical Engineering
  • Rosie Nold – Animal Science
  • Meghan Peterson – College of Nursing
  • Brian Rex – Architecture
  • Deb Spear – Psychology
  • Toby Uecker – Housing & Residential Life
  • Matt Vukovich – Health & Nutritional Sciences
  • Michael Walsh – Music
  • Robert Watrel – Geography

Honors Development Council

The Fishback Honors College has external Development/Advisory Council, which meets annually in the fall. Members of the council are consulted on an ad hoc basis when needed. Members are additionally invited to major Honors events throughout the year. Members include:

  • Robert Burns – Former Honors Dean, Distinguished Professor Emeritus
  • Chris Chase Professor of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
  • Jared Clark Honors Alumnus, Attorney
  • Chris Daugaard Honors Alumnus; Partner at Ernst Capital Group
  • Richard Deming Distinguished SDSU Alumnus; Oncologist
  • Tom Fishback First Bank and Trust
  • Travys Harvey-King Business Executive
  • Richard Holm Family Practice Physician
  • Kelli Jobman Honors Alumna, Practicing Dentist
  • Al Johnson Retired Engineer
  • Dan Kemp Professor of Mathematics
  • Peggy Miller President Emeritus of South Dakota State University
  • Jim Morgan Board of Regents Member, Retired CEO of Daktronics
  • Harriet Swedlund Former Honors Program Director, Professor Emeritus