University Letter

UND's faculty and staff newsletter

Remembering Susan L. Nelson

Susan Logan Nelson, former chair of the UND Department of Marketing, 74, of Minnetonka, Minn., and formerly of Grand Forks, N.D., passed away Sunday, Aug. 20, 2023, in Methodist Hospital of St. Louis Park, Minn.

Susan was born in Lexington, Ky., to her mother, Gwendolyn Logan, and her father, William Logan. She was born on Father’s Day, and her birth was announced in a horse magazine that her mother worked for as a journalist. This was the beginning of her love of horses, and many photos and sculptures of horses decorated her home in Grand Forks. Susan grew up with her sister Becky in Henderson, Ky., where she completed all of her before-college education and finished first in her class in mathematics.

After earning a B.S. in Accounting at the University of Kentucky, in 1971, she went on to earn both an MBA and Ph.D. in Marketing from Georgia State University. While doing so, she met her husband-to-be, Theron Nelson, and they were married in 1977.

Erik Andrew Nelson was born in July 1979, three weeks prior to the family moving to Bowling Green, Ky., where Theron and Susan had joined the faculty at Western Kentucky University to begin teaching. In 1983, the Nelsons headed for what they thought would be a two-year “adventure” in Grand Forks, as faculty members at the University of North Dakota. After their second child, Alex William Nelson, joined the family in 1985, the adventure turned out to be a lifelong commitment to Grand Forks and UND.

After starting as an Assistant Professor of Marketing at UND, by 1996 she was a full Professor. Before retiring in 2016, her 33-year career there included teaching far more classes than can be recounted here, holding the Chair of the Marketing Department, and moving to the finance department to create the Sport Business Program.

Susan was preceded in death by Theron in 2006. She is survived by her sons Erik and Alex, sister Becky McGinnis, and numerous nieces and nephews.