April 9, 2022

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Exec Team

Jacey Feyereisen

Internal Overall Chair

Hey! I'm Jacey Feyereisen, a senior Nursing major from Gregory, SD. I'm excited to say this is my fourth year with dance marathon!

I first got involved with dance marathon my freshman year at State A Thon, where I was a Morale Captain and was able to lead my sorority’s team and meet the miracle kiddos! My sophomore year, I was on the executive board as a Co-Morale Chair, where I was then able to help lead some of the most driven individuals ever. Last year, I returned to the board as the Entertainment Chair, which was again an unforgettable year.

This year, I’m excited to experience my first ever Dakotathon and serve on the executive board! This organization means so much to me and I cherish the relationships that I have built through it. I will forever be thankful for dance marathon and everyone who is impacted by it. I dance for the kids who can’t and for the families that inspire me every day. I dance for more hugs and kisses and less goodbyes. I dance for the tough little cookies and for the angels watching over us, who left us too soon.

I dance with the kids, for the kids!

Colewyn Knoblich

External Overall Chair

Hello everyone! My name is Colewyn Knoblich. I am a senior medical biology and chemistry double major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota. This will be my fourth year in the organization. I participated as a dancer my first year, as a morale captain my second year, and was the Entertainment Co-Chair last year. I never knew the huge impact this organization would have on my life when I first joined and I have loved every moment along the way! I love that this organization brings our campus together and gives us all the opportunity to change lives. I dance to make a difference in the lives of others and so that these kids can have a day away from the hospital.

I will be eagerly counting down the days until our event! Until then, FTK!

Emily Herbert

Alumni Relations

Hi there! I am Emily Herbert, and I am a second-year law student from Denver, and this is my third year with Dakotathon. I dance because money cannot be the determining factor in children's healthcare. My favorite part about Dakotathon has been getting to know the miracle families and their sweet kiddos! I also was honored to attend DMLC last summer in St. Louis. This convention consisted of hundreds of dance marathon loving college students! It was amazing to meet so many other like-minded individuals. I hope to bring the lessons I have learned throughout my years with Dakotathon into practice, showing compassion to my clients. This organization excludes compassion to everyone involved; from those organizing the events, to the families we support, to the health

Logan Rahn

Technology Chair

Hello everybody! My name is Logan Rahn and I am this year's technology chair! I am from Sioux City, Iowa and I'm a Marketing Major with a minor in Communication Studies. This is my third year participating in Dakotathon, starting off with my first two years being a dancer, and now I'm on the executive team!

Every year is eye-opening to me to understand how important this event is to our children. We allow them to be kids for a day, and that's the most important thing that we can do for them. I dance so someday instead of making kids be kids for a day, they're able to be kids every day. #FTK

Kaitlyn Fischer

Family Relations

Hello everyone! My name is Kaitlyn Fischer and I am a senior Nursing major from Sioux Falls, SD. This will be my fourth year participating in Dakotathon. My freshman year I participated as a dancer, sophomore year a morale captain, and then last year I was a co-marketing chair on the Executive team. I love how close I had gotten to everyone involved. It is an amazing feeling being surround by people who share the same passion for Dakotathon! Each year my passion and love for Dakotathon grows, and now I am grateful to have another opportunity to serve on the Executive Team as a Family Relations co-chair! Without a doubt, Dakotathon is not only my favorite organization on campus, but also holds a very special place in my heart. Seeing how happy and fearless the kids are throughout the year, especially on the day of the event, helps me remember how blessed I truly am. I dance for the kids to have a future and experience the great things that life has to offer! Every kid should have the chance to be a kid, a teenager, an adult and even have a family of their own if they wanted. I will continue to dance to help these kids reach their dreams. As always FTK ALL DM DAY



Trevor Axtell

Recruitment Tri-Chair

Hi everyone!! My name is Trevor Axtell and I am from Harrisburg, South Dakota. I am a Junior at USD and just started the Nursing program this fall! Dakotathon has been a huge part of me since my freshman year. I went in with very little expectations and boy can I say, this organization quickly turned around my college experience. I have met the most amazing people from Dakotathon and have made friendships that will surely last a life time. My freshman year I was one of three freshman morale captains which was a little nerve-racking to say the least. From there on it has been northing short of amazing. Last year I was apart of the executive team as the Moral Co-Chair. Sadly we did not get to perform the dance that we worked all year on perfecting. This year I will be taking on a role with two other great people as the Recruitment Tri-Chair. This year I look forward to making new memories with a new team and hopefully having an in person event! My Why: I dance for a brighter tomorrow!


Emily Ruzhitsky

Marketing Co-Chair

Hi everyone!! My name is Emily Ruzhitsky and I am from Sioux Falls, SD. I am in my senior year as a nursing student at USD.

This will be my fourth year participating in Dakotathon! My freshman year I was a Miracle Maker and fell in love with the strong kiddos as well as the organization as a whole, so I knew I wanted to become more involved. This will be my third year on the executive board. I have previously served as the Hospitality Chair, Family Relations Co-Chair, and this year I have the opportunity to serve as a Marketing Co-Chair.I can't wait to see what this year has in store! Let's make miracles happen!!

I dance for more smiles, so that kids can be kids, and in memory of Quinn Pesicka. HAPPY DM!!!


Graham Leonard

Recruitment Co-Chair


Hello everyone! My name is Graham Leonard, and I am a junior medical biology major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota. This upcoming year will mark my 3rd year of involvement in Dakotathon. During my freshman year I participated as a miracle maker, and last year I was a morale captain with one of Dakotathon’s finest dancers, Ben Tegethoff. This organization is very special to me as it emphasizes the role of being a servant. One of the reasons I dance is to give miracle kids the opportunity to spend more time doing the activities they enjoy and love. My favorite part of our Day Of event is the talent show as it highlights some of the many strengths of our miracle kids. I am super excited to meet all of Dakotathon’s new members this year and I am very grateful for the opportunity to serve on the exec team. Dakotathon truly is one of USD’s most rewarding and fulfilling organizations to become involved with and it has introduced me to so many amazing people. This upcoming year is going to be a blast and I cannot wait to dance with everybody in Vermillion. As always, Happy DM!!! #FTK

 

Leah Drengenberg

Sponsorship

I am a junior at South Dakota with a Medical Biology major. My hometown is Dixon Illinois, which is 100 miles west of Chicago. My freshman year I was introduced to Dakotathon and was a Miracle Maker, and then became a Morale Captain for my sophomore year. This year I am on the executive team as a Sponsorship Co-Chair. I have really enjoyed being a part of Dakotathon and getting to meet new friends and miracle kiddos!! I am super excited for the Dance Marathon day of this year since unfortunately, we were not able to have an in-person one last year! My favorite part of Dakotathon is learning the dance and then getting to teach it to a lot of other people on the day of! Last, but not least, I dance for the miracle kiddos that I babysit and give swim lessons to. Even though my job is to teach them, they have taught me a lot too and shown me how much joy this life has to offer!

Alex Allison

Events/Fundraising

I am a junior from Pierre, SD studying Communication Sciences and Disorders at USD. As a freshman in college, I was a miracle maker for Dakotathon, which made me want to take a step further to becoming a morale captain my sophomore year, eventually leading me to run for an executive position my junior year. I dance to leave an impact on the lives who need it most. I am excited to work hard to raise money for such deserving kiddos and crate new friendships along the way!

Logan Johnson

Sponsorship Tri-Chair

My name is Logan Johnson, I'm a Junior Finance major from Sioux Falls, SD. I've participated in Dakotathon the last two years as a Miracle Maker, I'm extremely excited to now work on the executive team! Dakotathon is an incredible organization that provides a unique opportunity to make a profound impact on people's lives. I'm super excited to get back on campus and get to work on making a real difference in these kids' lives!

Haley Larson

Sponsorship Tri-chair

Hi everyone!
My name is Haley and I am a third year senior majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders. I am from Yankton, South Dakota so home is close for me. I have participated in Dakotathon each of my three years here at USD. My first year I held a position on the decorating committee, my second year I was a morale captain, and this year I’m so excited to have the opportunity to be a sponsorship tri-chair!

Before coming to USD, I knew I wanted to be a part of Dakotathon. A close family friend has been one of our sweet miracles for 12 years and I knew that Dakotathon was the organization for me. The families and miracle kiddos are such an inspiration and it’s such a blessing to be apart of something greater than myself. I’m so excited for this upcoming year and the opportunities that are to come!

I dance with the kids, for the kids.

Kylie Christiansen

Recruitment Chair

Hi everyone! My name is Kylie Christiansen and I am a junior Medical Biology major from Jefferson, SD.
This will be my 3rd year participating in Dakotathon. My freshman year I was a Miracle Maker, sophomore year I was a Morale Captain, and this year I am excited to be a Recruitment Chair!
After participating my freshman year, I knew I wanted to have a bigger part in Dakotathon. Seeing all of the kid's smiling faces while getting to be free from their illness for a day is the reason that I love the Day Of so much. Since we were unable to have an in-person Day Of last year, I am even more excited to see all of the kiddos next April! I dance to help the kids and families who are going through something they never should have to. Dakotathon gives them the chance to just be kids for a day and to celebrate how amazing they are!
I am looking forward to meeting all of the future Miracle Makers soon! As always, FTK!

Benjamin Tegethoff

Entertainment Co-Chair

Hi guys! My name is Ben Tegethoff and I am a junior Medical Biology major from Mitchell, South Dakota. This is my third year participating in Dakotathon. As a freshman, I was a Miracle Maker and as a sophomore, I was a Morale Captain. This year I have the privilege of being the Entertainment Co-Chair on the Exec Team.

I am really excited to see Dakotathon grow this year and get as many people involved on campus as possible. I enjoy participating in Dakotathon because it celebrates the miracle kids and gives them a chance to have fun all day long, while also raising money to support their families and treatments.

I dance for the children who can't and to support the children and families who have been greatly affected and have had to undergo treatment. #FTK

Ellie Richards

High School DM

Hello everyone! I am a Sophomore Education Major from Pierre, SD. Last year I was a morale caption. I have never got to experience an in person 24 event, but the virtual event last year was so much fun. My why is "I dance to raise money for those who can't dance, so soon they can dance with me". Dakotathon means a lot to me but it means me being able to raise money for children who have been through more in their life than most people. Last year during our virtual event I thought it was so cool that we had so many different people joining us from all over the country that Trevor Axtell and I made a video showing how many people were supporting the Miracle kiddos from all around. I am looking forward to working with high schools in South Dakota giving high schoolers the chance to be able to feel what I feel when we raise money for Children's Miracle Network.

Allison Pettinger

Co-Entertainment Chair

Hello! I am a Junior this year and in my 2nd and 3rd semester of Nursing school! I started my dance marathon involvement my senior year of high school with our mini dance marathon! Ever since I found out about dance marathons I have been hooked! My freshman year at USD I was a miracle maker and team captain. My sophomore year I was Morale Captain and Top Morale! Dakotathon means so much to me knowing that I can help kids just be kids! There are so many reasons why I (try to) dance! The main reason I dance is for all the SMILES! I love seeing these kiddos have a day where they don't have to worry about anything in the world except having fun and being kids! When thinking about Dakotathon, I don't only think of our event, but I always think about the kids that are not able to dance with us in person. I know these angels whose lives were taken too soon are watching over us and dancing with us in our hearts! During quarantine I would randomly see videos from some of our miracle children on Facebook and it would make my day, reminding me who we are really isolating ourselves for! I look forward to meeting and getting to know the miracles Dakotathon is all about more and more as the year goes on!

Katie Vlach

Family Relations

Junior, Nursing, Omaha Nebraska, been a miracle maker since freshman year, I dance to show some of the mentally and physically strongest kids that they are not in this fight alone. I am really passionate about DM because I want to be a pediatric oncology nurse and want to put these kids before myself in order to put a smile on their face and give them And their families hope. Although this year is different, I know we will get through It by being extra creative and optimistic. We are all in this together and we can do anything we set our minds to!

Brady Samuelson

Logistics

Hi everyone! My name is Brady Samuelson and I am a junior chemistry major with a minor in mathematics from Sioux Falls, SD. I have been apart of the Logistics committee for two years prior to being part of the Exec Team. I see Dakotathon as an organization that gives all we can and does everything possible to give kids an unforgettable experience for a full twenty-four hours. My favorite experience would be playing laser tag in the SCSC super late into the night and what I look forward to most this year is meeting all the kids and their families and sharing an incredible Day Of with them.

Alexandra Feiner

Events and Fundraising

I'm a sophomore studying Criminal Justice and Political Science. I'm from Mitchell, SD. My freshmen year, I was a morale captain and I loved getting to see how excited the miracle kids were about the day of! I dance for those who can't. I think a lot of times we take for granted how able-bodied we are, but Dakotathon reminds me to appreciate it.

Autumn Wieczorek

Finance

I am a Junior, double majoring in Accounting and Operational Analytics. I grew up in Brookings, SD. My freshman year I was a miracle maker and loved it so much that I decided to apply to be a morale captain my sophomore year. After being even more involved in Morale, I couldn't stop myself for applying for an Exec position! I am now the Finance Director on Exec and I can't wait to see what this year has to offer! I was excited to get involved with Dakotathon when kids near to my heart became miracle children way too young. After witnessing what they and their families went through, I found my passion within this organization. I dance because being a small light in the dark for these families means everything. I am looking forward to the day of this year - in whatever form it may be!

Carson Park

Co-Marketing Chair

I'm a senior Medical Biology Major from Dell Rapids, SD and this is my fourth year as part of Dakotathon. Throughout those years, I've participated as a Miracle Maker, a member of the Decorating Committee, a Morale Captain, and I'm beyond excited to serve on this year's Executive Team as one of the Marketing Co-Chairs! I dance because Dakotathon privileges me with the opportunity to provide relief to the children and families that need it most.

Elizabeth Carda

Co-morale chair

I am a junior nursing major here at USD and I am from Sioux Falls! I was a miracle maker my freshmen year and loved what the program was about I knew after my freshmen year that I wanted to be more involved in the organization, so my sophomore year I was a morale captain and it was so much fun! I dance because the kids bring joy to my heart To me Dakotathon means family I look forward to dancing with the kids