Salo, Salathe, Ericksrud, Klinnert to be enshrined on April 9 in NY Mills

Contributed photo
Dean Salo is one of four people who will be inducted into the New York Mills Athletic Hall and Wall of Fame on April 9.

By Chad Koenen


Four new members of the New York Mills Athletic Hall and Wall of Fame will be honored during the second annual induction ceremony. The ceremony will be held on April 9 at the New York Mills City Hall Ballroom and is open to the public. 

The latest inductees to receive the prestiougious honor in the NY Mills Athletic Hall of Fame are Kim Salathe, Todd Ericksrud and Dean Salo. Meanwhile, John Klinnert will be inducted into the NY Mills Wall of Fame. 

The evening will begin with a social hour starting at 5:30 p.m., which will be hosted by the NY Mills Lions Club. A meal catered by Barb Schultz will begin at 6 p.m. with the induction ceremony at 7 p.m. 

The cost per ticket is $15 for the meal, but everyone is invited to attend and celebrating these accomplishments as the meal is optional. Those who would like to receive a meal are asked to contact Bryan Dunrud by email at or by calling (651) 402-0943 by Sunday, April 3 to reserve a meal. 

This is the second time there has been an induction ceremony for the NY Mills Athletic Hall of Fame and the Wall of Fame. In 2020 Ted Rud, Janet Karvonen-Montgomery, Mike Parta, Ralph Smith and John Mark were inducted into the NY Mills Hall and Wall of Fame. 

Dean Salo

Dean Salo has a wrestling career record of 158-25-2. He was a three-time team captain, and he was the second-winningest wrestler in Minnesota history in 1983. 

Along with 22 varsity tournament championships, he was Park Region Conference champion six times, District 24 champion three times, Region 6 champion three times and a state entrant three times. At the state tournament, Salo placed fourth in 1981, first in 1982 and second in 1983. Salo also played high school football and baseball from 1980-1983. 

After high school graduation he went on to wrestle at Moorhead State University from 1983-84, and he graduated from St. Cloud State University in 1987. 

Salo then taught and coached at Menahga High School from 1987-91 and Staples High School from 1991-94. He currently teaches and coaches at Perham High School, where he has been since 1994.

Kim Salathe

Kim Salathe was a Harrold, S.D., state track meet participant in 1976, as well as the Harrold, S.D., girls basketball team MVP for 1976. Then in Minnesota, she became a three-time Class A state champion in girls basketball, 1977, 1978, 1979 and and won third place in 1980 and sixth place in 1981. She lettered in grades 8-12 and was a Minnesota state volleyball participant in 1978. 

Salathe received the Minnesota Sportscasters Award in 1978, 1979, 1980 and 1981. She played on the Minnesota Class A Girls High School Basketball All-Tournament team for 1980 and 1981, and in those same two years she was on the WCCO All-State Team Girls High School Basketball team, as well as co-captain for her team. 

Kim Salathe will be inducted into the New York Mills Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, April 9

Salathe was a three-time All-State Girls Basketball in 1979, 1980 and 1981. She played three times on the Park Region Conference All-Conference team in 1979, 1980 and 1981. Also in 1981, Salathe was the Park Region Conference MVP, team MVP and a Minnesota Miss Basketball nominee. 

She scored 1,536 career points, with a Minnesota high school record 115 wins and 9 losses. She was All-Region Division II Basketball at North Dakota State University, in 1982 and had one appearance that same year at the AIAW Division II Basketball Final Four.

Salathe was a Minnesota high school basketball coach for junior high, C-team, JV and varsity from 1987-2001, and a Minnesota high school volleyball coach for JV and C-team in 1998 and 2001. She was also an elementary teacher in the NY Mills Elementary from 2000-2017.

Todd Ericksrud

Todd Ericksrud graduated from NY Mills High School in 1985. He was a three-sport athlete in high school. 

As a track and field athlete he was a six-time state place winner: (1984) 800-meter state champion and set Class A state meet record; (1985) second place 800-meter, second place 1600-meter sprint medley relay, fourth place 4×400-meter relay, sixth place team; (1984) first place 800-meter, fourth place 4×400-meter relay, ninth place team; (1983) third place 800-meter; (1982) seventh place 4×400-meter relay. 

Ericksrud is the school record holder in 400-meter, 800-meter, 1600-meter relay, mile relay and 1600-meter sprint medley relay, as well as holding the Class A State, Region 6, District 24, and Park Region Conference meet record in 800-meter. He was team captain junior and senior year and is a six-year letter winner. 

As a football athlete Ericksrud was a two-time Park Region All-Conference, leading the conference in receptions (1983) and tackles (1984). He was team captain senior year and is a four-year letter winner. 

Todd Ericksrud will be inducted into the New York Mills Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, April 9.

As a wrestler, Ericksrud was the 1984 Park Region Conference Champion, District 24 Champion and Most Valuable Wrestler and in Region 6 he won third place. He was team captain junior and senior year and he was a four-year letter winner. 

When Ericksrud went on to college, he ran track for North Dakota State University (1985-87) and University of Minnesota (1987-88). During those years he was four-time all-conference in the 800-meter (2 time indoor, 2 time outdoor), and he finished fifth place at the 1987 Drake Relays in the 1600-meter sprint medley relay. His relay set the school record.

Ericksrud holds a master’s degree in international logistics from The Georgia Institute of Technology and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota. He is the co-founder of the NY Mills Civic Excellence Scholarship and is a passionate advocate for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation to find a cure for inflammatory bowel diseases.

Ericksrud resides near Green Bay, Wis., where he enjoys running, biking and spending time with his wife and four children.

John Klinnert

John Klinnert will be inducted into the NY Mills Wall of Fame.

John Klinnert graduated from NY Mills High School in 1965. 

During his years there he participated in five sports and was awarded 12 letters. After high school, he ran cross country for two years at Moorhead State. He then spent 18 years, from 1969-1987, in education as a teacher, counselor, principal and athletic director. He worked at Royalton, Cyrus and Underwood, while coaching four different sports. 

Klinnert is currently in his 35th year owning JK Sports and Outdoors with his two sons in Fergus Falls. He was appointed by the governor to the Minnesota State High School League from 2006-10, where he served as treasurer in 2009-10 and he has served on the Minnesota State High School League Foundation Board since 2017. 

In 2019 he was inducted into the Minnesota Basketball Coaches Hall of Honor. As an official, Klinnert was awarded the Distinguished Service Award in 2006 by the Minnesota State High School Coaches Association and he is now in his 45th year refereeing high school and college basketball and football. 

Klinnert has been an official over 3,000 regular-season basketball games and over 500 regular-season football games at both high school and college levels. He has also officiated over 500 basketball and football tournament games, including over 100 district and section finals. In addition, he has been an official in 39 high school and college basketball and football state tournaments, including five state championship finals.

Klinnet said he is thankful for this great honor and is always proud to call NY Mills his hometown.