Viking Views 2022


13 National runner-up finishes during Fifer’s tenure. Other achievements include 57 conference or regional championships, with another 13 conference tournament titles, 512 All-Americans, and 748 NAIA Scholar Athletes. “I am eternally grateful and unbelievably proud to have been a small part of the Viking Spirit that has allowed this college to accomplish many great things,” said Fifer. Fifer’s tenure also saw changes and improvements to athletic facilities on-campus. In 2009, Volney C. Ashford Stadium/Gregg-Mitchell Field was renovated to include the installation of a new synthetic turf playing surface, which now allows for football, soccer and lacrosse teams to use the facility as their home field. The space around Volney C. Ashford Stadium was also improved to include the All-American Plaza, V-Club Plaza, and

upgraded main entrance. A resurfacing of Gregg-Mitchell Field in 2017 allowed for the construction of a second practice field, located to the south of the Burns Athletic Center. In 2019, the Walker C. Fletcher Athletic Complex and Markowitz Center for Strength Training and Wrestling was opened. The more than 28,000 square foot facility allowed for the expansion of services to student-athletes, with multiple new locker rooms, coaches offices, athletic training facilities and a new strength training and weight room. “He has built a reputation within the Heart of America Athletic Conference as a dedicated leader of high integrity and that shines through in Missouri Valley College’s athletic competitions with other schools in the conference,” added Dr. Humphrey. “It has been a true pleasure to work with him during my time at Missouri Valley.” Always well-regarded amongst athletic directors within the Heart of America Athletic Conference and in the NAIA, Fifer was recognized twice as Heart Athletic Director of the Year (2004, 2014). He was also promoted on multiple occasions after taking over the Athletic Director position full-time in 2000. Fifer was promoted to Vice President of Enrollment Management in 2009. He was later promoted again to Executive Vice President in 2017, a title he held until his retirement in June. In addition to his role overseeing the athletic department, Fifer was heavily involved in enrollment management, plant maintenance and budget management.

On his final day before retirement, Fifer talked with many of the coaches and athletic staff members at a surprise gathering in his honor. He was able to reflect on the more than 30 years of work at the college, and how much has changed and grown during that time. “I can’t thank Dr. Humphrey and Missouri Valley College enough for the unwavered loyalty and support, unquestionable friendships and a career full of opportunities to grow as a professional these past 31 years,” added Fifer. Fifer’s retirement has allowed for a new era to begin in athletics at the college, as long-time Men’s Wrestling Head Coach Mike Machholz was promoted to the Athletic Director position. 17

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