Donald Monroe Marshall was born Jan. 18, 1957, in Jefferson City, MO, the son of Chester Lee and Goldie (Irwin) Marshall. Don grew up and attended school in Jamestown, MO, graduating from Jamestown High School in 1975. He attended the University of Missouri, attaining a bachelor’s degree in animal husbandry in 1979. He then earned both his MS in animal science in 1981 and his Ph.D. in animal breeding and genetics in 1984 from Oklahoma State University.
Following graduate school, Don moved to South Dakota in 1984 to work as an SDSU Extension Beef Cattle Specialist in Rapid City. A few years later, he transitioned to a new teaching and research role with the Department of Animal Science on the SDSU campus in Brookings. During his time as a professor, Don taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses. In 2002, Don became the associate dean and director of academic programs for the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, now known as the College of Agriculture, Food & Environmental Sciences. During his term as associate dean, he also served concurrently as interim dean for the college from 2008-2010 and again in 2017. Additionally, he became the interim department head for the Department of Animal Science in 2012. After serving as the associate dean and director of academic programs for the college, Don was named the new vice provost for undergraduate education at South Dakota State University in 2020. In addition, he authored several research publications on a variety of topics and was elected to the executive board of the Agricultural Interactive Distance Education Alliance (AG*IDEA) in 2011, serving as chair for two years.
Throughout his career, Don exemplified both personal and professional characteristics that made him an outstanding educator. Many students have described Don’s patience in explaining complex concepts and making them accessible to his students. In fact, Don’s contributions in the classroom were recognized by his students and colleagues alike, earning him numerous awards for teaching excellence, including the Larson Foundation Award for Excellence in Teaching, the F.O. Butler Foundation Award for Excellence in Teaching, the Gamma Sigma Delta Award for Excellence in Teaching, and the Students’ Association Teacher of the Year for the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences.
Although Don’s professional accomplishments were considerable, his greatest legacy was his family. In 1995, he met his future wife Nancy Haas at SDSU, the campus they both loved so much and devoted such a large portion of their married life to supporting. The couple married in 1997, and a daughter, Becky, was born three years later, followed by a son, Charlie, in 2002; their daughter Katie was born in 2008. Having married later in life than many of his peers, Don made family his number one focus. Despite his busy schedule, Don prioritized spending quality time with his wife and children. In fact, Don’s hands-on approach to parenthood saw him responsible for the daily tasks in his kids’ lives from school chauffeuring to homework help. And when it came to his children’s activities, Don was “all in.” From learning the intricacies of the offside rule in soccer or understanding hockey systems to calculating the complexity of a tumbling pass in relation to how it affected the overall score in a gymnastics or cheer routine, Don took it upon himself to become an expert in whatever activities his children were involved in. Don was an avid outdoorsman, enjoying hunting, fishing, camping, and boating. He was also a dedicated sports fan, cheering for the BHS Bobcats, SDSU Jackrabbits, St. Louis Cardinals, Kansas City Chiefs, and Mizzou Tigers. Don’s patience, thoughtfulness, generosity, and endless supply of “Dad jokes” made him a favorite of his children’s friends, while his legacy of service to SDSU, his dedication to his students and colleagues, and his devotion to his family and friends will leave treasured memories for all who knew him.
Donald M. Marshall, 64, of Brookings, SD passed away unexpectedly at his home on Sunday, October 3, 2021. Grateful for having shared his life are his wife of 24 years, Nancy (Haas) Marshall and his children, Rebecca Marshall, Charles Marshall, and Katherine Marshall, all of Brookings, SD; his mother, Goldie Marshall of Jamestown, MO; his siblings, Gary (Kim) Marshall of Jefferson City, MO, Richard Marshall of Jamestown, MO, Robert (Lisa) Marshall of Jamestown, MO, Dianne Marshall of Columbia, MO, and Ronald (Michelle) Marshall of Columbia, MO; an aunt, Janet Reimler of Jamestown, MO; cousins, Vicki Reimler of Columbia, MO, and Kathy Reimler of Jamestown, MO, along with numerous nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews. Don was preceded in death by his father, Chester; an uncle, Frank Reimler; his father-in-law, Charles Haas, and his sister-in-law, Denise Marshall.
A celebration of Don’s life will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 15, 2021 at the Woster Celebration Hall in the Alumni Center on the campus of SDSU located at 815 Medary Avenue in Brookings, SD. The family will visit with those in attendance at the following reception at 5:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be given in Donald’s name to the SDSU Foundation. The memorial service will be live streamed via the Rude’s Funeral Home Facebook page. Rude’s Funeral Home is assisting the family with the arrangements, and condolences may be sent to the family through www.rudesfuneralhome.com.