Dear Concordia College,

Hi there!

My name is Ryan Sederquist! I grew up in Moorhead, MN, went to Moorhead High and later Concordia College, graduating in 2015 with a B.A. in Music Education. 

I worked in Alamosa, Colorado as an elementary music teacher for three years, getting my M.S. in Exercise Physiology on the side. My wife Christie ’14 (very amazing Cobber love story there…..but you’ve heard that a million times, so….we won’t go off on that rabbit trail today) and I then moved to Presque Isle, Maine so I could be an NCAA cross-country ski coach. After one year in the boondocks, I received the opportunity to be a band director in Leadville, Colorado. I was eager to take this shot, as it was my dream from 7th grade, when I started taking trumpet lessons with then retired Concordia Band Director, Russ Pesola. A brief aside – I would spend Saturday’s in the summer serenading Bad Medicine Lake for 2-3 hours at a time from middle school-college. My neighbors were Paul Dovre …just down the lake was also Paul J. Christiensen’s cabin, too….anyway….

I taught in Leadville for one year – budget cuts eliminated the job I had been told would be mine for as long as I wanted it. During the COVID-pandemic, I was fortunate to secure a remote teaching position out of Broomfield, Colorado. My wife and I lived in Leadville while I taught 5th graders all subjects over Zoom! That was also a one year contract, so this past summer, as we anticipated the arrival of our first child in August, I was again looking for a job. 

I ended up getting a high school English, economics, and world history position – which was about as much work as any teacher can imagine! The job was in the Vail area, and during my “spare” time, I started submitting columns to the Vail Daily. 

Fast forward a couple of months, and I’m now the sports/outdoors reporter for the Vail Daily, working the FIS World Cup event at Beaver Creek this week. 

A couple of days ago, the Vail Daily Live show arranged an interview with Ted Ligety, one of the most successful American alpine skiers of all-time. As me and the host, Tricia Swenson, prepared to have Ted join our live show, we started discussing whether it was “Vail Valley” or “Eagle River Valley,” which led Tricia to divulge that she grew up in the Red River Valley.

While….five minutes later we are sharing our memories of Concordia College, the wind-chilled plains, etc. Tricia was a 1993 (I think?!) Concordia graduate. 

How about that? Two Cobbers interviewing an Olympic legend….in Vail, Colorado….

If this ends up anywhere, I’d like to give a shout out to my band director, Dr. Haberman, and my coach, Garrick Larson. I want the Habs to know that I still play our band tour rap every so often and think about those wonderful melodies and memories we played together. And, to Garrick, of course, he knows this, that I’m still striving for athletic greatness. I’ve won several long-distance Nordic ski races here in Colorado, and if I accomplish my dream of ending up on the podium of the Vasaloppet (90k race in Sweden), I hope I can get a plaque of my face in that Hall of Fame. I know my running career sure didn’t do enough for it! Even if I don’t, thank you for the long conversations as you guided me in learning life-long lessons through sport. Thank you for your friendship. 

Well….the link to our Ligety interview isn’t up yet…but you can see our talk with River Radamus, another US ski team athlete: 

Or read my article on Ligety here:

Or my posts and podcasts with other Olympians, NCAA athletes, and ski friends here:​

I currently write for the Vail Daily full time, part time, and am working on producing a novel about a Russian/Canadian Olympian with a timeless, miracle story….I have a beautiful daughter named Novi, who already is being taught solfege, and a lovely wife, Christie, who has been watching me eat large meals with a loving smile ever since those days at Anderson Commons. I hope to someday bring Novi on a cold run around the Lindenwood Lights show, back to Olson Forum, and take her to the dining hall, where I can show her how to stack multiple waffles on top of a yogurt and frozen blueberry middle, point out the table where I used to gather every morning after training to read every newspaper’s sports section as I downed Life Cereal, and tell her about all of the laughs I shared with the Cobber track team.

Warmest regards, 

Ryan Sederquist

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