Jessen to be honored tonightLavern Jessen has been associated with small college athletics in North Dakota for more than six decades.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
Lavern Jessen has been associated with small college athletics in North Dakota for more than six decades.
The relationship began in 1949 when he was a freshman at Minot State and will end this spring when the Dakota Athletic Conference dissolves.
Jessen, the only commissioner of the DAC and former North Dakota Collegiate Athletic Conference, is being honored at halftime of tonight’s men’s basketball game between Dickinson State and Jamestown College — two of the original five members of the league formed in 1923 and would become known as the DAC.
The game begins at 6 p.m. at Scott Gymnasium.
“You look at the NDCAC and the DAC and Lavern has been the cornerstone of everything that has happened in his time,” DSU athletic director Tim Daniel said. “That’s the one constant you can take a look at that’s always been there. With that, Lavern has been the stabling force for everybody involved.”
Jessen said he’s thankful to those honoring him, but gave credit to the athletic directors and those who worked behind the scenes for the conferences over the years.
“I was part of a huge team,” he said.
Daniel said all past and current DAC and NDCAC schools chipped in to present Jessen with a plaque and a gift. Daniel will speak at the ceremony.
“I really don’t know what they’ve got planned, but it’s very nice of them to do that,” Jessen said. “I was always proud to be a part of the conference.”
Jessen said he has not thought much about what he will do when the 2011-12 school year ends and the DAC dissolves completely.
“I don’t think my life will change that much,” he said.