Donor Profile: Jay and Karen Heldt-Chapman
AMES, Iowa - Jay Chapman received a master's degree in aerospace engineering at Iowa State in 1993 after earning a bachelor's degree in the same discipline in 1990. His wife Karen Heldt-Chapman graduated with a bachelor's degree in business management in 1992. Since then they have donated their time and money to the Victory Club, Greater Des Moines Cyclone Club, Gridiron Club, and the Alumni Band. Chapman, who hails from Urbandale, now works as a Risk Management Consultant in the treasury department at Wells Fargo in West Des Moines. These two took some time out of their busy day to answer some questions about their history as Cyclones.
Q: Why did you join the Cyclone Club?
A: "Joining the Cyclone Club was the easiest way to support Cyclone athletics and it allows my wife and I to stay involved with Iowa State. It feels like you can contribute to something that is never ending and will last for a long time. We have been members since 1993 and continue to buy season tickets every year in football, and men’s and women’s basketball. I am currently the president of the Alumni Band and serve on the boards for the Greater Des Moines Cyclone Club and the Gridiron Club."
Q: When did you attend your very first Cyclone event?
A: "My first game was in Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City for a football game. I was a freshman in the marching band and felt quite nervous playing at halftime on the field. It was intimidating to be in front of thousands, but at the same time the atmosphere was amazing. My wife and I were both in the band and we had so many fun times in the band when we went to school there. As for her, she was a Cyclone since she was a little kid. She had been attending football and basketball games long before I started."
Q: What was the most memorable game that you attended?
A: "We took a small pep band down to Norman, Oklahoma for the football game in 1990. Iowa State won that game by a score of 33-31 and it was such an exciting event. I remember that game because it was so significant. I like to bring that up since it was the last time we won in Norman. Another neat experience was in 1992 when we put together a women’s basketball pep band and traveled down to Salina, Kansas for the Big Eight Tournament. It’s fun to look back and see how much better our team has progressed since those days. In 1992 I was directing the band for the game against Nebraska in football. The run that Marv Seiler had was right in front of the band. The pandemonium after the victory was astounding; I remember us pulling down the goal posts and celebrating all night."
Q: What was your favorite Cyclone Road Trip?
A: "I have been to all of the bowl games since 2000 and each one was a different and unique experience. The whole atmosphere in Phoenix for the Insight.com Bowl was something to remember. That was all in all a great time for Cyclone athletics. When we went to Boise (Idaho for 2002 Humanitarian Bowl), we found a lot of fun things to do. It wasn’t just about attending the games; what makes it fun are your friends and family. On the plane down to Phoenix for the (2000 Insight.com) bowl game we had seats with (former ISU quarterback) Sage Rosenfels’s parents. We didn’t even know it was them. We just got to talking and before you know it we were speaking to the game’s most valuable player’s parents. I always enjoy going on road trips because of the people that you meet along the way."
Q: Name some of your favorite players and coaches at Iowa State?
A: "Johnny Orr loved the band and we had a lot of fun at Iowa State when he coached here. We would go over to his house playing songs and trick-or-treating for Halloween. He would invite us right into his house and sit down and talk to a lot of us. Sage Rosenfels was a successful player here; born in the state of Iowa. But more importantly he was a good and respectable guy. Julius Michalik I loved to watch and he would give 100% effort all the time when he was on the floor. Jamaal Tinsley was just amazing, he could do anything with the ball and was a magician on the court."
"Let me say that it makes it a lot easier to be a member of the Cyclone Club when you see the kind of coaches we have. It is great because you can talk to any of them and they are so respected in what they do for this University. I am really excited about both Greg McDermott and Gene Chizik. Also having a young Cael Sanderson and Bill Fennelly for a lifetime will keep me a happy Cyclone for years to come."