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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

Dec. 9, 2010

Northwest coach Mel Tjeerdsma to keynote Governor's Prayer Breakfast

Mel Tjeerdsma

Mel Tjeerdsma

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Northwest Missouri State University head football coach Mel Tjeerdsma, who led the Bearcats to the Division II national championship in 2009, will be the featured speaker at the 2011 Missouri Governor's Prayer Breakfast, on Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2011, at the Capitol Plaza Hotel and Convention Center in Jefferson City.

The Prayer Breakfast is an annual inter-faith event for all leaders and citizens of Missouri; its purpose is to seek God's guidance for the state's political leaders as they begin the legislative session. In addition to the keynote speaker, the breakfast will also feature prayers, scripture verses and special music.

Tjeerdsma, a four-time national coach of the year honoree, is in his 17th season at Northwest and 27th as a collegiate head coach. His team won the Division II championship in 2009, with a thrilling 30-23 victory over Grand Valley State.

The winningest head coach in Northwest history, Tjeerdsma has guided the Bearcats to 11 MIAA championships, three NCAA national championships and seven title game appearances in the last 12 seasons. With 32 wins in 13 playoff appearances, he has the most postseason wins in Division II history. On Saturday, Tjeerdsma will lead the defending national champion and third-ranked Bearcats (12-1) into the semifinal round of the NCAA football playoffs against the top-ranked University of Minnesota-Duluth (13-0) Bulldogs in Duluth. The game is a rematch of the 2008 title game won by UMD, 21-14.

Tickets for the Governor's Prayer Breakfast are $30 per seat or $300 per table, and may be purchased online at Questions about the breakfast or about ordering by mail may be sent to Seating of guests the morning of the event will start at 7:10 a.m., with the breakfast beginning at 7:30 a.m. and ending at 9 a.m.

Proceeds from the Governor's Prayer Breakfast support the Governor's Student Leadership Forum on Faith and Values. The forum brings together select Missouri college students for a three-day study of faith and leadership. Participants explore the role faith has played in the lives of business executives, sports figures and government officials.

The Missouri Governor's Prayer Breakfast, established in the 1950s, is an annual observance welcoming participants from around Missouri at the beginning of the General Assembly's legislative session. It was established as an extension of the National Prayer Breakfast, which was first held in 1953.

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468