ASPLU President Robby Larson '00 likened to the young Erv Severtson '55
By Linda Elliott, Editor
Not long into his freshman year, Robby Larson '00 predicted he would be ASPLU president as a senior.
"No one who knew him doubted that statement," laughed Dave Urban '00, his good friend and roommate of three years.
"Robby is an extreme go-getter. He loves PLU and he's enthusiastic, determined, spirited, has a strong faith in God that shows up in his everyday life, and there's a genuineness about him. I have a lot of respect for him," said Urban, who is also the ASPLU Christian relations director.
Larson, a business major who did indeed get elected ASPLU president last spring, has been called by many a young version of Erv Severtson '55 recently retired longtime vice president and dean for student life who was student body president himself as a senior.
Larson, known for his ready smile and quietly charismatic presence, is involved in everything. Student government, Young Life, Campus Ministry, University Congregation, RHA, Red Carpet Club, Rejoice! and KCNS 6. He plays a half-dozen intramural sports and is an avid fan of PLU varsity sports. He sponsors a child from the Philippines and, this summer, was a founding member of a Parkland street ministry.
"Robby? He's everywhere," confirmed Heather Dewey '01, former ASPLU senator. "You can always count on him."
The only people who might have Larson beat in the involvement category are his parents, Bob and JoAnn, who clearly instilled in him a sense for putting others before himself.
"Robby's been very involved from the seventh or eighth grade on," said his mom who, in the Larson spirit, quickly signed on with her husband to serve on the PLU Parents Council. "He's humble and he has the PLU servant attitude. He's very caring and nice and takes care of friendships well. He's made some good choices in his life, and PLU was one of those."
"I'm one of those people who signs up for everything. No one is going to stop me from affecting things at PLU."|
Robby Larson '00
Larson chose PLU over a state school partially because his friend Mark Carrato '94, whom he describes as the "essence of cool," loved it here, and partially because he could be more involved at a smaller university.
"I'm one of those people who signs up for everything," said Larson, his blue eyes twinkling with determination. "No one is going to stop me from affecting things at PLU."
Larson abhors apathy and hopes to boost involvement on campus this year. In particular, he'd like to get more people to support varsity sports and has arranged for a free bus to take students to road games.
He's also planning on a series of fall campus forums on ethical uses of the Internet; is working to get cable in the residence halls; and hopes to increase communication among clubs, organizations and ASPLU so there will be less duplication of efforts and more participation by students.
President Loren J. Anderson calls Larson the "real" president of PLU, and was impressed with him from his days as a prospective student.
"Robby Larson has been an outstanding leader since he served as president of the Oregon DECA chapter during his high school days. His contributions to PLU are already enormous, and we look forward to working with the Larson administration in the coming year," Anderson said.
Larson said he wouldn't mind following in Severtson's footsteps and become a "permaLute" by working in the alumni or admissions offices after graduation. He's also considering getting his MBA, going into corporate law or perhaps joining the Lutheran Brotherhood team.
"I want to stay in the PLU community if I can," he said. "I've given a lot of myself, but there's so much more I can do."