Alumni Association appoints new leader

Kara Gutormson

Kara Gutormson

Alumni, current students and faculty all have the opportunity to become involved with events and outreach activities provided by the Alumni Association.

Recently, the association council appointed Matthew Fuks as the new Alumni Association executive director. He is starting his new position this week and has just made the move to Brookings from Kansas City.

Fuks said his years at SDSU allowed him to succeed in career advancement and personal growth. Making SDSU his college of choice was a decision based on his parents’ support, as they are both SDSU alumni.

Fuks graduated from Brookings High School and declared a general studies major his first semester of college. Later he opted to change to a dual major in political science and history.

Fuks didn’t share any entertaining dorm stories while being interviewed, as he lived at home the first two years of college. However, he said that he enjoyed living off campus. He mentioned he lived in “an upstairs apartment on Main Street, right across the street from Jim’s Tap.”

After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in political science and history, Fuks took a job with the radio station KJJQ in Brookings and worked in sports broadcasting for a year.

Fuks said he once aspired to go to law school, and his favorite college course was Constitutional Law taught by Robert Burns. Fuks has always been interested in politics since the early age of 10.

“The business with the Nixon administration fascinated me, even though I was so young at the time,” said Fuks.

Following the radio station gig, he relocated to Kansas City to start a job as a sales representative with Weld but did not end up taking the position. Instead, Fuks started a position as a manager at Enterprise Rent-a-Car for two and a half years. The next job opportunity came with Penske Corporation, which is a transportation company that provides transportation solutions to large companies. Fuks was a sales rep for Penske for five and a half years, and it was there that he met his wife, Kari. Prior to accepting the SDSU position, Fuks enjoyed working as a sales representative for The Kohler Company.

They were married in October 1999. Kari grew up in San Diego but is a “Midwesterner at heart.” Fuks said the South Dakota weather isn’t likely to bother her. They have two children, Jeffrey, who is almost six, and Maddi, who is three. Fuks spends his free time with his family, and also enjoys SDSU athletics.

Fuks is a huge fan of Jackrabbit football. He is very dedicated to his Hobo games. He has not missed a Hobo game since 1978. He reminisced back on the Hobo game of 1985 against the University of South Dakota as a special Hobo Day memory. “It was warm enough to wear shorts,” he said. “Must have been 80 degrees. There was a record of 16,000 fans in attendance, and they all got to see the Jackrabbits slaughter the Coyotes.”

Fuks would like to see the student body flourish and for current students to remember, “Once a student, always an alum.” Fuks looks forward to getting to know other students and alumni and talking about the great opportunities at SDSU.

“Having a passion for SDSU is a prerequisite for this job,” Fuks said. “I can’t wait to get started.”

#1.883286:2514977056.jpg:mattfuks,alumniassociation.jpg:Matt Fuks, Alumni Association executive director: