Skip to main content
The official hub for news and stories from Colorado Mesa University
Honoring Mr. Mav

University and friends celebrate the life and legacy of Alumnus Doug Sortor

Anyone who knew Doug Sortor would tell you nobody exemplified true Maverick spirit quite like him. Starting all the way back while he attended CMU, playing tight end for the football team and graduating in 1980 with a bachelor’s in psychology. He continued to support the Mavericks throughout his adulthood. When Sortor passed unexpectedly in August 2022, it left a huge hole in the hearts of many.

The previous year, he was awarded CMU’s Distinguished Alumni. According to friends, it was one of the highlights of Sortor’s life. College football teammate and longtime friend, Brad Brehmer, said of his acceptance speech, “He brought the house down. There’s never been anyone I’ve known to be a stronger cheerleader for the university than Doug.”

As the owner of Grand Junction’s Blue Moon Bar and Grille, Brehmer dedicated a Mr. Mav wall in Sortor’s honor. Sortor frequented the establishment after games, sometimes with students, to congregate and show team spirit. Regularly in the stands with his wife, Sharon, decked out in Mav gear and waving a big banner at a football game, Sortor was also working behind the scenes to support the university. He founded the Football Alumni Association Chapter, which helped raise funds for players’ scholarships. He also previously served as the president of the CMU Alumni Association Board.   

It made perfect sense for CMU to name the building which houses the Alumni Association and Foundation after Mr. Mav.  

“Doug displayed Maverick spirit in absolutely everything he did. Anyone who met him instantly knew he was quite possibly CMU’s biggest champion,” Karen Martsolf, friend and Alumni Association Board colleague said. “Doug would have been extremely honored and humbled to have a hall at CMU named after him.”

A UPS employee for 30 years, Sortor eventually landed at STRiVE post-retirement and described himself as their champion.

“Doug recreated himself. We all do that at some point in our lives, but he took it a step further,” said Brehmer.

The Football Alumni Association Chapter is currently raising endowment funds in Sortor’s honor. When people pass through his hall, read the plaque, they will hopefully understand unconditional school spirit.

“The dedication ceremony was a beautiful tribute to an extraordinary man,” Martsolf said.


Written by Heather Portenier