Hometown: Pipestone, MN

What keeps you in Sioux Falls? Family & friends

Who was your Masonic/Shrine sponsor and why did you become a Master Mason/Shriner? Lady Gloria and I used to go to all the Rumbles’ dances. Then one day, I said to Gloria that after our twins graduated from high school, I was going to join the shrine and join the Oriental Band. I was in an investment club with Jim Taylor of Mitchell SD, so, knowing he was a Shriner, I asked him about joining. He then set me up with Lee Lewis to petition me to Unity lodge 130.  Jim then became my first line signer for the Shrine.  So in the spring of 2003, the twins graduated from school, and I became a Mason/Shriner and joined the OB. Gloria was not entirely happy about this, because now I had to work the Rumbles’ dances, instead of dancing with her!

What is your favorite part of being a Masonic Shriner? The pursuit of happiness with fellow Shriners who all work towards a common goal.

What units and clubs have you been and/or currently are a member? I currently belong to the OB, charter member of the Blast & Cast, Ski Unit, Legion of Honor, and dues paying member of the Horse Corps. 

Why did you accept the position of Divan and then Potentate for our shrine? I guess because I didn’t realize what I was committing too!

What was your favorite thing about being the El Riad Shrine Potentate?

Telling bad jokes to a (not so receptive) group of Shriners!

What was your largest challenge as El Riad Shrine Potentate? Telling bad jokes to a (not so receptive) group of Shriners!

What were you most excited to accomplish?

 Due to Covid, the implementation of the Virtual Circus, and the resulting out pouring support for this fundraiser, from our Nobles and Ladies. 

How did First Lady Gloria feel about her Shrine year? Gloria and I were honored to serve as your Potentate and First Lady in 2021.  Now we are looking forward to stepping back and letting other Divan, Nobles, and Ladies have fun while keeping this Shrine running in the right direction. 

Describe El Riad Shrine in five words: Having Fun and Helping Kids. 

Where do you see El Riad Shrine in five years? I believe that El Riad Shrine will continue to be one of the premier temples in the Midwest, if not, Internationally. 

What would you tell shriners and their families about joining our family, fraternity and philanthropy? In today’s world, there are a lot of people who don’t even know who their neighbors are. They are yearning for more acquaintances, for more friendships. Joining the Shrine, and being active, will increase your number of friends exponentially!

What else would you like to share with our Cactus readers?
If you believe in the Shrine philosophy, and you are an active Shriner, life will be good!

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