2011 Alumni Award Recipients

Black Hills State University honored four BHSU alumni during the annual Alumni Awards Luncheon on Friday, September 9, at 12:00 p.m. in the Jacket Legacy room of the David B. Miller Yellow Jacket Student Union. Those honored this year were, left to right: Darla (Talty) Crown, Class of ’80, Special Achievement Award; Dr. Barry Jankord, Class of ’82, Excellence in Education Award; Dr. George Rinker, Special Service Award; and Charles “Chuck” Sederstrom Jr., Attended, Distinguished Alumnus Award.

Command Chief Warrant Officer Darla J. (Talty) Crown, Class of ’80, enlisted in the United States Army, Women’s Army Corp, in 1973 after graduating from Wall High School. Upon her honorable discharge from active duty, she immediately joined the South Dakota Army National Guard. She earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from BHSU and began teaching math and science at the junior high level. After receiving her master’s degree in education and science, she worked as a counselor, sales and marketing professional, and development officer. 

Last spring the South Dakota National Guard welcomed Darla as the first female Command Chief Warrant Officer during a ceremony honoring the transfer of authority. She oversees recruiting, morale, education, promotions, retention and Warrant Officer career development. 

Responsibilities in her career have included: being assigned as a personnel officer in a field artillery brigade, instructing leadership and land navigation for the Officer Candidate School, and serving as a Casualty Notification Officer. In addition to her active duty time from 1973-76, she also served on active duty during Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom. 

Darla was named the Girl Scouts “Woman of Distinction” and received the Rapid City Chamber ATHENA Award, for her contributions to the support and development of women in leadership roles. Just as she has been inspired, mentored, and encouraged by other men and women in uniform, Darla hopes to serve as a role model to inspire, mentor, and encourage others to set their goals high, work hard, and reach for their dreams.




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