runestad-jake_youngWinona State University announces Jake Runestad (’09) will be honored as a Distinguished Young Alumnus during Homecoming 2016.

Runestad graduated summa cum laude from WSU with a degree in instrumental music education, music composition. While at WSU, he received the Minnesota Monthly November 2006 Student of the Month award, the MMEA Minnesota Collegiate Composer of the Year for 2006 and 2007, the Outstanding Student in Music Education in 2009, and the MENC Collegiate Professional Achievement Recognition Award in 2009.

He continued his education at The Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University and received a master’s degree in music in 2011. Runestad completed student teaching in Lima, Peru, through the Educators Abroad Global Student Teaching Program.

He is an award-winning composer of music for orchestra, choir, wind ensemble, chamber ensembles and opera. Having worked with leading ensembles around the world, he has established himself as a distinguished young composer of “highly imaginative” (Baltimore Sun) and “stirring and uplifting” (Miami Herald) musical works.

Runestad currently resides in Minneapolis, Minn. More information on Runestad and his works can be found at his website,

Every year the Winona State University Alumni Society recognizes alumni, faculty, staff and community members for the accomplishments they have made in their careers and contributions they have made to Winona State and their communities, living Winona State’s mission to improve the world.

More information on the awards can be found at