Fine Arts Hall of Fame Inductees

The Mount Marty University Gregorian Fine Arts Association (GFAA) is proud to announce this year’s Fine Arts Hall of Fame inductee class and ceremony. These individuals were chosen by the current GFAA advisory council based on their passion, dedication, and service to the arts at Mount Marty and the surrounding community.

During the weekend of Lancer Days, these inductees will be honored at a ceremony held Sunday, September 22 at 12 p.m. in Marian Auditorium.

To learn more or to nominate future inductees, contact Shannon Viereck.

Congratulations to the 2024 Fine Arts Hall of Fame Inductees!

Alice Hohenthaner
to be awarded posthumously

Alice Hohenthaner was born in Huron, SD in 1927. She studied at Huron College and Yankton College. She earned a masters degree in music from the University of South Dakota and completed many courses in the doctoral program for music performance at the University of Iowa in iowa City.  She began her teaching career in Crofton, NE, then began teaching elementary music in Yankton public schools.  She moved to the junior high school to teach music and arranged a combined Yankton Junior High and Sacred Heart School choir concert two years in a row.  In 1968 she began teaching English and music at Mount Marty College.  She started the MMC band in 1969.  She left MMC in 1980.  She began teaching at Yankton High School, where she expanded their music program, adding a Swing Choir, a Madrigal Group, and a Boy’s Choir to the existing Girl’s and Mixed Choirs.

During her time in Yankton, she also served as organist at the Episcopal Church and was the organist for the Men’s Choir at Sacred Heart Church. She also accompanied the Shriner’s Choir. In 1989, she moved to Las Vegas, where she began her second career. She served as adjunct faculty at UNLV and substitute taught in the Clark County School District for several years. In addition to a remarkable teaching history, Alice served in many roles as an accompanist. For several years she worked as accompanist to the Southern Nevada Musical Arts Society and with the Las Vegas Men’s Chorus, jobs she truly loved. For 17 years, she served as organist for Christ Church Episcopal in Las Vegas.


Dean Rettedal

Dean Rettedal graduated from Scotland High School and received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and a Master of Music degree from the University of South Dakota in Vermillion. He taught for four years in Centerville, South Dakota, before returning to the University of South Dakota for one year on a Graduate Teaching Assistantship. The next three years were spent teaching in Emmetsburg, Iowa. In 1979, Dean and his wife, Karen, returned to Scotland and purchased a clothing and shoe store which they owned and operated until June 1, 2024. Dean and Karen have two grown children: Kristi, a music teacher in Sioux Falls and David, a foot surgeon in Dakota Dunes.

In 1981, Dean began a 33 year career at Mount Marty College (now Mount Marty University) in Yankton where he was an Associate Professor of Instrumental Music and director of concert band, jazz band, pep band and the Weed Brass Quartet. He has been a trumpet performer in various groups and bands in the Midwest, currently playing with the Sioux Empire Brass in Sioux Falls. Dean has been a member of the Yankton Area Summer Band since its beginning, playing trumpet and guest conducting. He has conducted several Honor Bands in South Dakota and Nebraska and has been a frequent judge at High School music contests.


Michael Lavelle '74

Michael (Mike) Lavelle was born in Sioux City, Iowa, graduated from Central High School in 1969 and went on to attend undergraduate studies (in Art) at Mount Marty University in Yankton, S.D. where he graduated in 1974. At Mount Marty, he met his wife, Mary Straub, a fellow Mount Marty student. 

Upon graduating from Mount Marty and after a four-year career teaching Art in Iowa, Mike opened his first retail gallery at the Empire Mall in Sioux Falls, S.D. in 1981. Shortly after, he moved the business to the Westroads Shopping Center in Omaha, Neb. While operating the Art Plus Gallery in Omaha he opened four more locations in Sioux City, Iowa; Des Moines, Iowa; Moline, Ill.; and Sioux Falls, S.D. In Omaha, Mike also offered art awareness presentations to the community, including multi-cultural exhibits and minority artist presentations.

In 2004, Mike and Mary sold the business, and Mike joined his wife as a partner in her real estate career. In 2007, Mike and Mary moved to Algona, Iowa for the opportunity to purchase the Algona Realty real estate firm. In 2017, they sold the firm and returned to Omaha where Mike accepted a position with the Creative Center, College of Graphic Design, serving as an  admissions advisor. 

In 2019, Mike and Mary retired to Bay Saint Louis, Miss. on the gulf coast. There, Mike served as their condominium complex’s property manager, and he was also involved in community theatre. Mike and Mary have three children (Desmond, Phelan and Caitlin) who all enjoy media careers in the arts. Today, Mike is still painting and growing in his revelation of this world through his artistic insight. 


Fred Ertz '74

Fred Ertz was born in Burke, South Dakota, where he grew up on his parents’ ranch with his sister and four brothers. After attending a country and Catholic grade school in Butte, Fred finished grade school and graduated high school from Fairfax High School in Fairfax, South Dakota in 1970. Fred’s parents Duane and Jeannie Ertz were married for over 50 years and were owners of the infamous Pomp Room in Sioux Falls which was inducted into the SD Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2018. 

Fred achieved great success and set records in high school football and baseball which gave him dreams of a college athletic career. However, a farm accident and family connections brought him to Mount Marty University in the fall of 1970. Fred double majored in Communications Journalism and Biology/Pre-Med and served as student body president before he graduated in 1974. After graduation, he started his broadcasting career at Midcontinent, KELO-TV in Sioux Falls as a News Director and News Anchor. 

Over the next 10 years, Fred worked as a News Director, Operations Manager and Local Program Director/VP of News at stations WNEM-TV in Saginaw, Mich., WDIV-TV in Detroit, Mich., WIS-TV in Columbia, S. Carolina, KRIS-TV in Corpus Christi, Texas, KTVT-TV in Dallas/Ft. Worth, and KSTV-TV in Seattle/Tacoma, Washington. In 1996, Fred took on the role of Senior Executive at ASI Entertainment in Hollywood, California.

In 2001, Fred moved into the strategist and consultant industry as a Principal/Senior Station Strategist at Audience Research and Development in Dallas / Ft. Worth area. As part of the senior management of AR&D he consulted dozens of television network affiliates and created successful and profitable news and marketing strategies. While still connected to AR&D and doing occasional projects, he is mostly retired. 

Fred is married to his wonderful wife Stephanie and their two children Piper and Jack Maverick. Piper is a Registered Dietician at the University of Arkansas, working directly with the Arkansas athletic program. Jack Maverick played football at and recently graduated from Columbia in New York. Based in Texas he works for 1080 Motion a Swedish company focused on speed training and rehabilitation. Today, Fred and Stephanie live in Grapevine, Texas with their two golden retrievers, Bentley and Dodger, and two cats, Cleo and O'Malley.


2024: Alice Hohenthaner (posthumous award), Dean Rettedal, Michael Lavelle '74, Fred Ertz '74

2023: Dixie (Sims) Church, Sister Leonarda Longen, OSB (posthumous award), Dick Reddy, Sister Cynthia Binder, OSB

2022: Sister Madonna Schmitt, OSB H’45, ‘59 (posthumous award), Jim and Marilyn Nyberg, Virgil Petrik, Judi (Schmidt) O'Connell H’59, ‘63

2021: Sister Jane Klimisch H’38, ‘41 (posthumous award), Sister Jeanette Klimisch H’38, ‘41 (posthumous award), Jack Lyons, Eugene Brinkmeyer