BOONE - Rick Wulkow, the executive director of the Iowa High School Athletic Association for the past 10 years, is stepping down after 35 years of service to Iowa students and member schools.
In its monthly meeting held in Dubuque over the weekend, the Board of Control of the IHSAA accepted his formal resignation effective Jan. 31, 2015. In the interim months he will work with the new executive director.
Xavier High School Principal Tom Keating, the chairman of the Board of Control, announced that Alan Beste has been named as the new executive director.
Beste joined the IHSAA staff in 1989 as a Wellness Coordinator and since July 1998 has been an Assistant/Associate Director.
Wulkow became the fourth executive director of the 109-year-old Association when he accepted the leadership reins from Bernie Saggau, who served 37 years as executive director. It was Saggau who recruited him from the public school ranks in 1980 to join the IHSAA as an assistant executive director. He was appointed by the Board of Control to follow Saggau on Jan. 1, 2005.
“I am proud to have had the opportunity to serve the IHSAA member schools and students for 35 years,” said Wulkow. “I have never considered my career opportunities as work and I have been fortunate to interact and be part of programs that have been led by so many great people.”
Keating remarked, “On behalf of the Board of Control, I want to express our deepest appreciation to Rick for his phenomenal leadership as Executive Director. He has led the IHSAA with vision, with passion and most importantly with the best interest of the young people of our great state.
"Rick has taught us that the best leader is a servant leader, one that walks with those he leads, not in front of them.”
Wulkow is a graduate of Lytton High School, where he was an all-around athlete. He received his undergraduate degree from Buena Vista University and his Masters Degree in school administration from the University of South Dakota.
Beste is a native of Sauk Centre, Minn., and a graduate of St. Cloud State University. He has Masters Degree from Northwest Missouri State University.