DSU professor, Gale Wiedow, elected president-elect of American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance

Gale Wiedow, Ph.D., associate professor of Physical Education and Exercise Science at Dakota State University in Madison, SD, has been elected President-Elect of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD). The group’s mission is to promote leadership, research, education and best practices in the professions that support healthy and active lifestyles such as physical education, recreation, fitness, sport and coaching, dance, health education and health promotion.

As an AAHPERD national spokesperson, Dr. Wiedow will promote quality physical education, physical activity and sport programs and lend expertise to tackle the growing epidemic of physical inactivity in children and the importance of physical activity for everyone. 

“I am honored and humbled to accept the position of AAHPERD President-Elect,” said Gale Wiedow. “Aside from serving as a national advocate for the importance of quality physical education, I look forward and take pride in the opportunity to promote AAHPERD’s current initiative, Let’s Move in School, which focuses specifically on our youth and ensuring every school across the country incorporates a comprehensive physical activity program before, during, and after school with the help of school, parent, and community involvement. During National Physical Education and Sport Week, May 1-7, over 7,000 schools and nearly 5 million students will be participating in a national celebration of physical activity.” 

A life member since he joined AAHPERD in 1974 while a student at the University of Northern Iowa, he has served the organization in a variety of elected and appointed positions at the state, district and national levels. He attended his first national convention that same year and estimates that he has attended over 50 state, district and/or national conventions since 1974.

During a professional career spanning over 40 years, Wiedow has served in numerous leadership positions including President, Treasurer and Executive Director at the state level, and Treasurer, Executive Director and President-Elect at the district level. He served as President and Board of Governors representative for the American Association for Leisure and Recreation (AALR) and two terms on the Alliance Strategic Planning Committee, a term on the Alliance Finance Committee, and he currently serves on the Finance Workgroup of the Organizational Planning Committee. He served as department chair of HPER at the University of South Dakota (USD), where he was a tenured full professor and also held the position of Associate Dean for Research and Technology. Wiedow was a 2003 inductee into the North American Society of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, Sport and Dance Professionals and has received numerous other awards including the Honor Award from AAHPERD, AALR, Central District and South Dakota AHPERD. He was a 2011 recipient of the R. Tait McKenzie Award and is a state PE Teacher of the Year at the college/university level.

Wiedow completed both his undergraduate and Master of Arts degrees at the University of Northern Iowa, both in physical education. During service in the U.S. Army between degrees, he was stationed with the 553rd Military Police Company at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, where he served as NCOIC for Training and Education at the Area Confinement Facility. Following completion of the MA degree, Wiedow was appointed as the Intramural Coordinator at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he completed his Ph.D. degree in Administration, Curriculum and Instruction. Wiedow has also taught at Indiana University, the University of South Dakota, and at Dakota State University. From 2003 to 2007, Wiedow served as National Program Director for the National Youth Sports Program (NYSP), a federally funded summer day-camp program for economically disadvantaged and underserved youth hosted on college/university campuses.

About American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD)

AAHPERD, an alliance of five national associations, six district associations, and a Research Consortium, provides its members with a comprehensive and coordinated array of resources, support, and programs to help practitioners improve their skills to further the health and well-being of the American public. It is the largest organization of professionals involved in physical education, recreation, fitness, dance, health promotion and all specialties related to achieving an active, healthy lifestyle. AAHPERD serves 20,000 members and has its headquarters in Reston, Virginia, 25 miles west of Washington, DC. To learn more, visit www.aahperd.org.


Last Updated: 5/23/12