For Valentine’s Day week, Lone Tree’s philanthropic Tyler and Natalie Tysdal are 2018’s Villager Sweetheart Couple of the Year. Here’s a fun family “selfie”: Clockwise, Tyler in front, Callie Jean, Natalie, Johnny and Addy. Courtesy of Tysdal family
BY SCOTTIE TAYLOR IVERSON
Both were from Nebraska. He from small town, North Platte, and she from Lincoln.
Both were high achievers. They first met at a student-council leadership camp while in high school. Natalie caught Tyler’s eye right away because of her beauty. When he won the talent contest, he caught her eye. But they weren’t re-introduced until after Natalie had become Miss Nebraska and her host family in North Platte, where the pageant was held, thought the match might be ideal.
Tyler had gone on to Georgetown University to study finance and Natalie pursued journalism at the University of Nebraska, where she was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta. Their courtship was very long distance for three and half years. He went to Baltimore, received his M.B.A. from Harvard while she went to Idaho and Alabama following her passion for broadcast journalism.
Natalie as a child
Tyler as a toddler
They made appointments to talk and had exorbitant phone bills. Even their first year of marriage was long distance but included a rendezvous in places such as New York City, Annapolis, Md., Washington, D.C. and Idaho to skiing. They worked hard and played hard. They had trust and a lot of faith in each other and the relationship while growing their careers.
Their engagement had been a family-community affair, consisting of a scavenger hunt in North Platte.
A mix tape of their favorite songs recaps their dating journey, filled with clues.
A final stop was at the family cabin in Lake Maloney. It was filled with so many candles that Natalie’s dad was on standby with a fire extinguisher. In the center was a statue of Beauty and the Beast. Tyler’s mom remembered Natalie had sung the theme while visiting 300 schools during her Miss Nebraska reign. The beast was Natalie’s prince.
“Tyler is so romantic,” Natalie said. “There is meaning behind every little thing.”
They were married in 1996. Six months before the wedding, she took the name Tysdal professionally, as her maiden name was too difficult to say, according to one broadcast market.
After Harvard, Tyler joined Natalie in Alabama. They had made a short list of preferred places to live, so when Natalie received the call from Channel 2 in 2002, they relocated to Denver within three weeks.
In her anchor/reporter roles, she has won Emmys, Associated Press awards and the Gracie Allen Award. Entrepreneur Tyler founded TitleCard Capital.
Their three children each have a unique personality: Addy (Addison, 17), Callie Jean (13) and Johnny (John Tyler, 8) are also high achievers and on the honor rolls. Addy is a born leader who was recruited and has made a verbal commitment and begun the admission process to play lacrosse at the Naval Academy. Callie is interested in theater. Johnny is social and known as “Mr. Fun.” Coincidentally, Johnny is a villager in his elementary school’s production of Beauty and the Beast.
The wedding reception of Natalie Jean Kuijvenhoven and Tyler Tivis Tysdal
Natalie and Tyler have traditional values. Their china is inherited from their families and prayer time is observed at dinner. Each year, there is a family theme inscribed on dog tags for the boys and necklaces for the girls. In 2017 it was Gratitude and in 2018 the theme is Tenacity.
The Lone Tree family is also ambitious and philanthropic. Tyler’s clients give back to the community. Addy has already started a charity called SportAKid. Natalie started a production company called EverWise Entertainment that has given a voice to many nonprofits.
When asked to what they attribute their success in marriage, they answer by talking about concentric circles, being able to adapt, and in times of adversity thinking of reasons to be grateful—and a lot of understanding.
“Life doesn’t have to perfect to be wonderful,” Tyler said. “Our lives are different every several years and there are challenges with two strong careers, but our aligning of faith, appreciation of family, determination at work, consistent parenting and making a social impact are what make us appealing to each other.”
The “Beast” sculpture from their engagement event resides in Tyler’s office.
A “time capsule” from their wedding day: June 9, 1996
The Tysdals at a fundraiser Photo by Scottie Iverson
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