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Cassie Mitchell

Determination Defined

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Get an inside look at what it means to be a Cowboy. Bring a future college student to one of OSU’s guided campus tours.

Campus tours are held Monday through Friday, and on these upcoming Saturdays: May 14, June 18, July 16 and Aug. 20. Go to for more information.

Spring 2011, Vol. 6, No. 3

Welcome to the spring 2011 issue of STATE magazine, your source of information from the OSU Alumni Association, the OSU Foundation and University Marketing. Many of Cassie Mitchell’s former professors regard her as their top student of all time. Besides excelling in competitive racing and rugby, this 2004 chemical engineering graduate is now a biomedical engineer zeroing in on promising treatments for ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease. As always, we welcome your comments and suggestions for future stories. Cover photography by Phil Shockley

Romantic Writer Library welcomes author Nicholas Sparks this fall.

Join Early Students aren’t waiting until they graduate to become life members of the OSU Alumni Association.

Flying High OSU’s aerospace engineers lead the way in unmanned aerial systems and inflatable astronaut habitats.

A Stately Affair OSU Icon Awards highlight this elegant Tulsa event.

Business Decision Tulsa-based industry representatives support students in OSU’s natural gas compression program.

No. 1 Pass Rate OSU students hold the highest pass rate among 23 osteopathic medical schools tested.

Gift 10 The of Opportunity


Seniors of Significance

12 14 17 18

Tuesday Trivia A new program on Facebook and Twitter connects past, present and future OSU students.


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Honoring a Vision

Outstanding Seniors Alumni Association selects 12 distinguished seniors for this prestigious award.


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Friendly Competition 32

A 14-day visit to Haiti turns into a lengthy career for veterinarian helping the nation’s animals and people.

Branding Success



Veterinary medicine alumni create two new ways to raise dollars for student scholarships.

Man with a Mission

OSU’s most effective recruiting tools.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma’s gift yields student scholarships and a health lab at OSU-Tulsa.

Alumni Association recognizes seniors for excellence in scholarship, leadership and community service.

Gift will strengthen English Department and help OSU’s bid for Phi Beta Kappa chapter.

Shotgun Sports Club 20 Little-known club could become one of A Healthy Future

Oklahoma food entrepreneurs showcase their products at the Dallas Gourmet Market.

Matching program inspires 2,665 donors as the OSU campaign surpasses $374 million in student support.

Giving Back Cathy and John Jameson credit OSU and lifelong learning for their many career and personal achievements.

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Funding the Future Scholarship fund honors retired president of OSU Institute of Technology and his concern for students.

Quarterback Scholarship Mike and Kristen Gundy’s gift to OSU will triple in value thanks to the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match.

Determination Defined Not even a paralyzing disease prevents Cassie Mitchell from achieving her arduous academic and athletic goals.

Hall of Fame

43 A Mother’s Legacy


Immigrant appreciates her adopted U.S. alma mater.

Reflections of a Newbie Provost Robert Sternberg shares insight on “What’s so great about Oklahoma State?”

How the West Was Drawn Western artist Chance Hays doesn’t just paint cowboys, he is one.

New scholarship reflects couple’s belief in the leadership potential of students from rural areas.


Through good times and bad, sickness and health, this couple remains loyal to each other and OSU.

Safer Roads


OSU-Oklahoma City’s precision driving program puts the brakes on accidents.

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Pooling Their Resources Alumni ExxonMobil Controllers group unites to make an immeasurable impact on student scholarships.

Life Members

92 94

This orange connection for alumni will last a lifetime.


Heritage Hall

Engineering Student Council moves forward with designs to make a future engineering showcase a reality.


Tulsan’s gift for medical students honors his late wife’s belief in the power of education.

Students discover that producing a live athletic show isn’t as easy as it sounds.


An OSU Love Story


Giving in Remembrance of a Giver 72

The Sounds of Learning


For Rural Students

A champion, a pioneer, a visionary and an explorer describe four new Alumni Hall of Fame inductees.

Lucky, Blessed and Fortunate


Sixteen years after the Oklahoma City bombing took the life of OSU alumna Margaret “Peggy” Clark, her family and friends honor her memory by living life to the fullest.

Ancient and Beneficent Orders

Teachers find camaraderie in the Red Red Roses and Blue Blue Violets.

Departments President’s Letter








FM with IQ


Letters to the Editor




Campus News


O-STATE Stories






When you see this logo, go to to view behind-the-scenes video and extras about the article. This member-only benefit is brought to you by the OSU Alumni Association.


President’s letter

In early May our campuses were alive for spring commencement ceremonies. We joined family and friends in celebrating the accomplishments of our undergraduate and graduate students. An OSU degree is a passport to a world of opportunities, and it is always a thrill to watch students make their graduation walk. On the cover of this issue of STATE is one very special OSU graduate. You will be touched by Cassie Mitchell’s remarkable and inspiring story of determination and achievement. She has triumphed over many challenges and is pursuing promising treatments for Lou Gehrig’s disease. This issue also takes a look at OSU’s position as a world leader in the development and application of unmanned aerial systems, which has opened exciting research opportunities and allowed students to let their innovation and creativity take flight. It seems a day does not go by that we observe with pride the accomplishments of OSU alumni. Read about John and Cathy Jameson, Ross and Billie McKnight, Chance Hays, Paul and Connie Brown, Keith Flanagan and others who are true inspirations. Provost Bob Sternberg has been an energetic and welcome addition to the OSU leadership team. I think you will enjoy his essay on creativity and the importance of OSU remaining true to our land-grant values. In the spirit of creativity, original illustrations by Carey Hissey’s graphic design students accompany the piece. Ann and I wish you a safe and fun summer. Go Pokes!

Burns Hargis OSU President


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Dear OSU Alumni and Friends, Hundreds of prospective students along with their friends and families visit OSU throughout the summer. They tour classrooms and labs, check out the Colvin Center’s exercise equipment, shop the variety of housing options and dream of the future. Many alumni say OSU’s outstanding academic programs piqued their interest, but it was the friendly campus environment that assured them they would feel at home as students. This summer, the Alumni Association is welcoming the Class of 2015 with the new Life Membership Student Program, which will allow students to make bursar payments on a life membership while they’re in school. Students who sign up for this program will receive all the benefits of other student and alumni members, and will graduate with a membership affording them a lifetime of services and connections to OSU at a discount of up to $400. We encourage you to read more about this exciting new program on page 11 and have your current students sign up online at The future is bright for our students. Our generous donors to OSU’s Branding Success campaign continue to exhibit an unparalleled commitment to helping current and future students attain a higher education. Read on page 36 about the more than 2,600 donors who responded to Boone Pickens’ $100 million challenge for student support, known as the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match. In fact, Boone was so impressed with the response that he added another $20 million and enhanced the program, which led to more than $191.5 million in gifts and commitments for scholarships and graduate fellowships. When fully endowed, these funds will produce more than $9.5 million annually. To learn more about how donors are providing unprecedented support for OSU, visit Tell your friends about the bright future at OSU.

Kirk A. Jewell President and CEO OSU Foundation


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Larry Shell President OSU Alumni Association

Kyle Wray Associate VP for Enrollment Management & Marketing


photo / Phil Shockley

It Pays to be a Member! Members have access to discounts on products and services across the United States and can save hundreds of dollars a year. Here’s one way you can save.

Family of 4 Vacation to Mammoth Lakes, California Lift tickets for family $100 Savings/day Hotel Room $20 Savings/day Rental Car $10 Savings/day 5-day family vacation totals more than $400 savings for the trip.

Find out how you can save today at

201 ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center Stillwater, OK 74078-7043 TEL 405.744.5368 FAX 405.744.6722 *Savings as of March 1, 2011. Subject to change without notice.


universit y marketing Kyle Wray / Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management & Marketing

Janet Varnum, Michael Baker, Matt Elliott & Melissa Oxford / Editorial Mark Pennie, V. Paul Fleming, Ross Maute, Valerie Kisling, Sarah Faith Dunbar & Elizabeth Hahn / Design Phil Shockley & Gary Lawson / Photography Jessa Zapor-Gray / Photo Coordinator University Marketing Office / 121 Cordell, Stillwater, OK 74078-8031 / 405.744.6262 / (web) / editor@, (email) O S U A lumni A sso c iation Paul Cornell / Chairman Dan Gilliam / Vice Chairman Rex Horning / Immediate Past Chairman Ron Ward / Treasurer Burns Hargis / OSU President, Non-voting Member Larry Shell / President, OSU Alumni Association, Nonvoting Member Kirk Jewell / President, OSU Foundation, Non-voting Member

John Allford, Cindy Batt, Larry Briggs, Ron Bussert, Brian Diener, Jennifer Grigsby, Dave Kollman, Jami Longacre, Pam Martin, Ronda McKown, Joe Merrifield & Nichole Trantham / board of Directors Pattie Haga / Vice President and COO Chase Carter / Director of COMMUNICATIONS Melissa Mourer & Kathryn Bolay-Staude / Communications Committee

201 ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center / Stillwater, OK 74078-7043 / 405.744.5368 / (web) / info@ (email) O S U F oundation Barry Pollard / CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD Kirk A. Jewell / President and Chief Executive Officer Patricia Moline / VICE PRESIDENT for DEVELOPMENT Brandon Meyer / VICE PRESIDENT & General Counsel


It is such a delight to see the article “Extraordinary American” in the winter issue of STATE. I would like to commend Matt Elliott for his excellent work. He not only captured the essence of my memoir, Manchurian American, he enriched it with more information (by interviewing me) and with photos. As a good journalist, he also checked the facts and made it more reader-friendly in today’s environment. I appreciate his efforts, particularly when he’s busy with his studies. Best regards, Yupin Wang THANKFUL TO MR. SERETEAN

I am writing about the recent article in STATE magazine about Bud Seretean. While an OSU student, I was fortunate to have met Mr. Seretean, a very caring and inspirational man and a leader among fellow OSU alumni. I am forever thankful for Mr. Seretean, as he was able to provide me career opportunities that have directly resulted in the life I am leading today. Does OSU have a memorial fund for Mr. Seretean? If so, I would like to contribute to it to honor Mr. Seretean. Sincerely, Paul Lewis

Donna Koeppe / VICE PRESIDENT of administration & treasurer

Jamie Payne / senior director of human resources Gene Batchelder, Monty Butts, Jerry Clack, Bryan Close, Charlie Eitel, Ellen Fleming, Michael Greenwood, Jennifer Grigsby, David Holsted, Rex Horning, Don Humphreys, Kirk A. Jewell, Griffin Jones, Steven Jorns, David Kyle, John Linehan, Ross McKnight, Bill Patterson, Bond Payne Jr., Barry Pollard, Scott Sewell, Larry Shell, William S. Spears, Jack Stuteville, Kim Watson & Dennis White / BOARD OF TRUSTEES Jacob Longan, Chris Lewis, Leesa Wyzard, & Katie Ann Robinson / COMMUNICATIONS OSU Foundation / 400 South Monroe, P.O. Box 1749 / Stillwater, OK 74076-1749 / 800.622.4678 / (web) / info@ (email)

STATE magazine is published three times a year (Spring, Fall, Winter) by Oklahoma State University, 121 Cordell N, Stillwater, OK 74078. The magazine is produced by University Marketing, the OSU Alumni Association and the OSU Foundation, and is mailed to current members of the OSU Alumni Association. Magazine subscriptions available by membership in the OSU Alumni Association only. Membership cost is $45. Postage paid at Stillwater, OK, and additional mailing offices. Oklahoma State University, in compliance with the title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Executive Order 11246 as amended, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other federal laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age religion, disability or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices, or procedures. This includes but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid, and educational services. Title IX of the Education Amendments and Oklahoma State University policy prohibit discrimination in the provision or services or beliefs offered by the University based on gender. Any person (student, faculty of staff) who believes that discriminatory practices have been engaged in based on gender may discuss their concerns and file informal or formal complaints of possible violations of the Title IX with the OSU Title IX Coordinator, the Director of Affirmative Action, 408 Whitehurst, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078, (405) 744-5371 or (405) 744-5576 (fax). This publication, issued by Oklahoma State University as authorized by the Assistant Director, University Marketing, was printed by Progress Printing at a cost of $.98 per issue. 35,900/May ’11/#3515. Copyright © 2011, STATE magazine . All rights reserved.

To donate to the Seretean Business Scholarship established by Bud Seretean, make checks payable to the OSU Foundation, designated for the Seretean Business Scholarship 24-60600. Mail to the OSU Foundation, 400 S. Monroe, Stillwater, OK 74074. THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES

Before this year fades into history, Cherry and I wanted to express to you our appreciation for your excellent work in editing and publishing the account of our 50th wedding anniversary celebration in August 2009. This work appeared in the fall 2010 issue of STATE, page 98. Thank you for composing my thoughts in a beautiful way, capturing these memories for future meaningful reflections. Thank you again for making these special events in our lives even more special. Richard and Cherry Tredway Warr Acres, Okla.

Mark Allen received the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Alumni Award in September 2010 and was incorrectly identified in the winter edition. The Alumni Association regrets this error. A REMARKABLE YOUNG MAN

Thank you for including a wonderful article on Jared Whittington in the winter STATE magazine. Jared is a remarkable young man with unlimited potential and a passion to serve. Maj. Mark Mahoney, retired Recruiting Operations Officer OSU Army ROTC

STATE magazine welcomes your letters. Information will be edited for length, clarity and style. Please include your year of graduation, major and a daytime phone number. Send letters to 121 Cordell, OSU, Stillwater, OK 74078 or


Campus news

Library Welcomes

Nicholas Sparks The hearts of romantics will skip a beat when they learn Nicholas Sparks, America’s preeminent chronicler of the human heart, is the headliner for the 2011 H. Louise & H.E. “Ed” Cobb Speaker Series on Nov. 18 at the Edmon Low Library. With more than 50 million copies of his books in print, Sparks has quickly become a literary sensation. He is a New York Times No. 1 bestselling author with 15 books to his name and six blockbuster movies based on his books. The Notebook, Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, Dear John and The Last Song are among the most iconic romantic feature films for a new generation. The audience will enjoy Sparks’ sincere, down-to-earth personality as he displays the traits that make his books so beloved — great storytelling, a unique voice and a charm that connects through the power of words. His relatable talks weave his own personal story of hard work, rejection, anxiety and triumph, and will inspire authors — and romantics — everywhere. The Nov. 18 Cobb Speaker Series includes a welcome reception and dinner followed by a question-and-answer session and book signing. Seating is limited. Individual tickets are $100, and half the cost is a tax-deductible gift to the Friends of the OSU Library. Tables and sponsorship opportunities are available. For reservations, contact Debbie Clemons at 405-744-7273 or visit



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It pays to be a member... Even as a student! Students can save money by becoming Alumni Association life members before graduation Most people agree college isn’t just a four-year experience. There’s the excitement leading up to enrollment followed by the transformative years when students prepare to become tomorrow’s leaders. And then there are return visits after graduation, which for most alumni is a period much longer than four years. That’s the time for homecomings and football games, a walk through the Edmon Low Library just to remember its distinctive smell, or spending a few quiet moments by Theta Pond to reflect upon the past. Keeping graduates connected to everything that alumni cherish about Oklahoma State is the responsibility of the OSU Alumni Association. And now OSU alumni parents have a new opportunity to guarantee the ties they have for their alma mater will be passed on to their new freshman son or daughter in Stillwater. This summer, the Alumni Association is introducing the new Life Membership Student Program available to incoming freshmen and current students.

Instead of waiting until graduation or years after to begin their connection for life, students will be able to opt in for a $75 per semester charge, resulting in a fully paid life membership after four years in school.

“We know current students and recent graduates aren’t thinking about how they’ll remain connected to OSU after they graduate,” says Larry Shell, president of the OSU Alumni Association. “But we also know parents see the value of an Alumni Association membership, which will provide hundreds of discounts and opportunities to their sons and daughters at a key moment in their lives. “That was the reason for creating the student life membership — to make sure we support our new graduates exactly when they need the most help and keep them connected from the moment they graduate.” The program will also save new alumni $400 off the regular price of a life membership compared to one purchased after graduation. “This is a great opportunity for students and parents to recognize OSU’s importance in our lives, not just while they’re in school but also after they graduate,” says Kathryn Bolay-Staude, director of membership and marketing for the Alumni Association. “Membership is the most recognizable way of expressing your loyalty to OSU, and it’s also the most affordable way of getting discounts on health and property insurance, career services, athletic tickets, merchandise and more. “The earlier graduates begin taking advantage of a life membership, the more they will save, and the new Life Membership Student Program allows

students to purchase a life membership at a discount while they’re still in school.” Current students can also sign up for the Life Membership Student Program and pay any remaining balance on their life memberships when they graduate. All students who are enrolled in the program are considered members of the Alumni Association during their time in school and will receive many of the same benefits and privileges as alumni members, including a special car decal, monthly e-newsletter and access to hundreds of local and national discounts. Members will also receive the popular “Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow” T-shirt once a year until they graduate and will be invited to a special fall kick-off event with food and prizes. “We’re very excited about the possibilities this will open for our current students,” Bolay-Staude says. How To Sign Up Incoming freshmen can learn more about the Life Member Student Program at the Alumni Association table during new student orientation. Current students and those already enrolled can sign up any time online using the Student Information System at and selecting the option under the Registration tab. For more information about the Life Member Student Program, call 405-744-5368 or visit


Campus news

Lofty Goals

photo / phil shockley

Flying High New opportunities are taking flight for OSU students interested in the emerging field of unmanned aerial systems. “Unmanned aerial systems have become the hottest growth area in the aerospace engineering world with an expected 10-year growth rate of tens of billions of dollars per year,” says Larry Hoberock, head of OSU’s School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. The technology continues to expand into police, security and border patrol operations, agricultural applications and inspection of pipeline and power transmission. Last fall OSU and the University Multispectral Laboratories in nearby Ponca City received a five-year, $43 million Department of Defense contract and $1.5 million Oklahoma Economic Development Generating Excellence contract to test and design unmanned aerial systems. This spring, OSU began offering the world’s first graduate degree option in unmanned aerial systems and signed a new agreement in which OSU mechanical and aerospace engineering students and faculty will develop prototype ground and airborne systems and equipment for the Federal Aviation Administration in cooperation with the U.S. Air Force.


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The FAA is responsible for verifying the accuracy of instrument landing and navigational control systems in the nation’s airspace, and the U.S. Air Force employs FAA equipment and procedures for the same purposes for military airfields. Currently, the FAA conducts 18,000 flight inspections each year but does not use unmanned vehicles yet. “This is an exciting opportunity for OSU to build on our knowledge of unmanned aerial systems and introduce such systems to the FAA,” Hoberock says. The result could substantially improve efficiency and safety and also reduce costs for the federal entities. OSU aerospace engineering faculty Andy Arena, Jamey Jacob, Rick Gaeta and Joe Conner and the OSU-owned University Multispectral Laboratories already hold a stellar track record in developing unmanned aerial systems and associated technologies and will lead the OSU research. “This program validates Oklahoma’s commitment to the growing industry of unmanned aerial systems,” says Ken Viera, associate laboratory director for the University Multispectral Laboratories, “and will establish our state as the ‘fly-to state’ for technology excellence in this area.”

OSU is one of three finalists NASA selected for a competition this summer to design, manufacture, assemble and test an inflatable loft for future space explorers to live in. The OSU XHab team of mechanical and aerospace engineering students will compete against teams from the University of Maryland and University of Wisconsin-Madison based on initial proposals for concepts that can be integrated with NASA’s current operational hard-shell prototype habitat. “All three teams will go head-to-head at the Johnson Space Center in Houston to demonstrate an attachable, inflatable habitat that could serve as the next generation lunar module,” says Jamey Jacob, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and the team’s adviser. The winning team will be awarded additional funds to integrate their design with the NASA habitat during field testing in August and September. These field tests, conducted in the Arizona desert, allow NASA engineers to test the habitat livability in conditions similar to the moon or Mars.

Space Cowboys In addition, NASA selected another team of OSU students to perform micro-gravity testing experiments in NASA’s specialized aircraft that simulates weightlessness. The group of 10 undergraduate students in mechanical and aerospace engineering will travel to Johnson Space Center in Houston in June, says team leader Kristin Nevels. Scientists and engineers with NASA’s Microgravity University selected the OSU team, called the “Space Cowboys,” as one of just 10 teams chosen from about 75 entries, says team mentor Jamey

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Eskimo Joe’s Future Teacher scholarship recipient-Lisa Sadler

Celebrates Teachers!

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Campus news


Stately Affair A

n elegant evening of delicious food and OSU Icon Award presentations make “A Stately Affair” in Tulsa a can’t-missevent for OSU alumni and supporters. But, it’s the promise of more opportunities for students to earn an OSU degree that makes the black-tie (or orange-tie) gala truly special. Proceeds from the May 23 event at Southern Hills Country Club will fund scholarships for deserving students who plan to attend the OSU Center for Health Sciences or OSU-Tulsa. This is the first joint fundraising effort for OSU’s two Tulsa campuses. “A quality education has the ability to change a student’s life forever, and scholarships can sometimes mean the difference between a young person attending OSU or not going to college at all,” says Mary Shaw, event chair. “This is a fun event that is all about creating opportunities for more students to earn an OSU degree in Tulsa.” Student scholarships were identified as a top priority through the recent “OSU in Tulsa” strategic planning process. Shaw says organizers hope the event will raise scholarship funding and OSU’s profile in the Tulsa community. OSU alumnus Boone Pickens is the honorary chair for the event. Some gifts from A Stately Affair have qualified for the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program at a rate of 2-to-1. The $120 million matching program is part of OSU’s Branding Success campaign, the largest educational fundraising campaign in Oklahoma history. OSU President Burns Hargis will serve as the master of ceremonies for the evening, which will include a silent auction and introduction of the inaugural OSU Icon Awards.

Howard Barnett, president of OSU-Tulsa and OSU Center for Health Sciences, says the awards honor individuals and entities who have demonstrated noteworthy contributions to Oklahoma. This year’s Icons for OSU in Tulsa include Dr. Ebb Willis Reeves, a retired osteopathic physician and trustee of the OSU Medical Center in Tulsa; Dr. Robert McCullough II, an internist/hospitalist at Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Tulsa and former professor at the OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine; Michael P. Johnson, a retired executive with the Tulsa-based Williams Companies, active community leader and former trustee of OSU-Tulsa; and the H.A. and Mary K. Chapman Charitable Trusts, an organization originated by two dedicated Tulsans that provides support for nonprofit organizations involved in a wide variety of charitable purposes. “We’re pleased to establish the OSU Icon Awards to recognize those whose exceptional leadership and dedication contribute positively to the Tulsa community and our

in Tulsa Mary Shaw, left, Billie Barnett and Howard Barnett will help host “A Stately Affair” in Tulsa to raise scholarship funds for deserving students who plan to attend the OSU Center for Health Sciences or OSU-Tulsa.

state,” Barnett says. “It’s an opportunity for the university to applaud outstanding service that contributes significantly to the quality of life and education in Oklahoma.” Barnett says he believes the support shown by donors and friends of the university is laying the foundation for OSU to do great things in Tulsa. “As public funding resources become more and more limited, private gifts are increasingly important to ensure the success of our students,” he says. “OSU has the most generous donors and supporters anywhere. Their commitment reflects their own passion and vision for OSU, as well as the investment in our current and future students.” The inaugural A Stately Affair gala took place in 2006 and raised more than $1 million to fund the Gary Trennepohl Chair in Leadership. The chair was named in honor of OSU-Tulsa’s first president and helps fund an endowed faculty chair in finance at OSU-Tulsa to provide teaching and scholarly research. O

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Jacob, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. “It’s a terrific opportunity and a testament to our students’ ability to put together a proposal and show NASA they have the right stuff,” Jacob says. The students will test an inflatable system planned for space station deployment that could ultimately reduce the sideeffects of various gravitational changes on astronauts. “The idea is to use a rotating inflatable system to generate artificial gravity for the astronauts so they won’t experience as much bone and muscle loss as they would if they were floating in the weightlessness of the space station,” Nevels says. “Our team will be testing the inflation dynamics of the system and experiment with different rotation speeds to determine the best speed for the desired level of artificial gravity.”

Students Win National Scholarships Blake Jackson of Hartshorne, Okla., received two of America’s top scholarships this spring by capturing both the Harry S. Truman Scholarship and the Morris K. Udall Scholarship. He is the first OSU student to receive both awards in the same year. Jackson, an agribusiness junior, is OSU’s 16th Truman winner and 13th Udall winner. After graduating, he plans to attend law school and concentrate on environmental and Native American law. The Truman Scholarship provides up to $30,000 to juniors with exceptional leadership potential who are committed to careers in government, the nonprofit or advocacy sectors or education. Also winning a Udall scholarship is OSU junior Flint Holbrook, a biosystems engineering major from Clover, S.C., who would like to work in the energy industry and bring new environmental technologies to the market. The Udall scholarship, which will provide $5,000 to each recipient, is awarded to outstanding sophomores and juniors who are studying environment-related fields or who are of

Student Wins Grand Prize Melaney Stevens, a senior in design, housing and merchandising, won the grand prize for the women’s ice climbing pants she designed for Project OR, a competition during the Winter Outdoor Retailer show in Salt Lake City, Utah, in January. The Project OR design competition celebrates the functionality, originality and design of outdoor recreation clothing. Each year, Project OR selects five design students from top programs around the country and gives them 48 hours to create an original garment prototype using eco-friendly materials provided by participating supplier exhibitors. Stevens created stretchable, water resistant pants that met the flexibility, protection and versatility requirements. She combined a modern look into the design by using targeted incorporation of color. “My focus is in custom bridal wear, so coming to Project OR was a new challenge,” Stevens says. “I like being exposed to new apparel and new fabrics. It’s changed my perception, and I’m going to look in this industry for opportunities in the future.” Stevens receives an all-expenses-paid return trip to Outdoor Retailer Summer Market ’11 and a profile in Textile Insight.

Native American descent and pursuing fields related to health care or tribal public policy. “We are extremely proud of the accomplishments of these two tremendous young men,” says President Burns Hargis. “OSU has become a regular winner of prestigious national scholarships, and Blake and Flint are the latest examples of how OSU students rank among the best in the country academically.”

Energy Savings Add Up OSU saved $15 million in energy costs across all of its campuses as a result of the energy conservation program launched in 2007 in partnership with Energy Education. “In the midst of economic and budget challenges, our energy conservation program has been a huge boost to our ongoing cost containment efforts,” says President Burns Hargis. “These savings

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Campus news

have allowed us to focus dollars on academics and other focus areas.” Energy-saving measures include lighting retrofits, upgrades of heating and air-conditioning systems and installation of vending machine “misers.” The Stillwater campus has saved more than $12 million, allowing the university to open five new or renovated buildings without increasing the overall maintenance and operation budget. The buildings are the North Classroom Building, the Multimodal Facility, Murray Hall, Old Central and the Henry Bellmon Research Center. Eleven residential halls also have earned the Energy Star label as a result of OSU’s efforts.

Safety In Action Mobile security vehicle thwarts simulated terror attack at stadium The OSU University Multispectral Laboratories demonstrated the unique capabilities of an integrated, mobile security vehicle during a simulation of a terror attack at Boone Pickens Stadium in April. photos / phil shockley

first responders from local, state and federal agencies to work together in a way they never have before.” Headquartered in Ponca City, Okla., the OSU University Multispectral Laboratories is a national center focused on the testing, evaluation and implementation of defense, homeland security, energy and intelligence systems. Owned by OSU and operated by Triton Scientific, an Oklahoma business, the center brings researchers together with government and industry to rapidly and efficiently advance new technologies and capabilities. “OSU is pleased to be a part of launching such an important new technology,” says Stephen McKeever, vice president for research and technology transfer at OSU. “As a land-grant institution, we have a responsibility to create products that benefit the general public. OverSite is a perfect example of that.”

He also received a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and served four years on its faculty before coming to OSU in 1964. Reid’s technical interests are in the areas of system dynamics and automatic control, biomedical and process instrumentation, and computer-aided design. He is the author of more than 30 refereed journal papers and four book chapters, and holds four U.S. patents. Lorenz became the first OSU alumnus to serve as dean of the Center for Veterinary Health Sciences, first as interim dean from 2001 to 2004 and then as dean from 2004 to the present. Lorenz earned a bachelor’s in preveterinary medicine from OSU’s College of Agriculture in 1967 and a doctor of veterinary medicine degree from the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine in 1969. He then completed specialty training at Cornell University and earned board certification in Veterinary Internal Medicine (Small Animal) in 1976. Before returning to OSU in 1997, Lorenz served on the faculties of Cornell University and the University of Georgia and was dean of Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine from 1988 to 1994. Lorenz, whose specialties also include neurology, plans to work and teach in OSU’s Small Animal Clinic at the veterinary center’s hospital until he fully retires.

The vehicle, OverSite©, is a threatdetection and centralized command platform that integrates multiple sensor technologies with communication networks to form a comprehensive solution aimed at enhancing public safety. “OverSite is a new tool that will aid in the protection of our nation’s soft targets and critical infrastructure assets,” says Web Keogh, laboratory director at the University Multispectral Laboratories. “Its integration of technologies provides a new level of preparedness and allows


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Two of OSU’s most beloved deans, Karl N. Reid and Michael D. Lorenz, have announced their plans to retire. Reid, dean of OSU’s College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology since 1986, is the college’s longestReid serving dean. His 51 years at OSU include his student years earning bachelor and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering.

photos / GARy Lawson and Phil Shockley

Longtime Deans Announce Retirements


Business Decision Fund

GROWS to $600,000

Industry representatives show their support for Natural Gas Compression Program


recent report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration predicts steady growth in the natural gas industry through 2035. For the Tulsa-based Gas Processors Suppliers Association, that good news underscores the need for more skilled gas compression technicians in the field. Gas compression engines are what push natural gas through U.S. pipelines, and at OSU Institute of Technology the Gas Processors Suppliers Association recently upped the ante on its scholarship endowment for students in the Natural Gas Compression program. Added to donations and matching grants from other natural gas advocates, the total fund is now $600,000. The Gas Processors Suppliers Association, an international organization of companies serving the natural gas industry, presented $100,000 to OSUIT’s Natural Gas Compression Program for additional scholarships. This contribution

along with the association’s $75,000 donation last December are eligible for 2-to-1 matching funds through the Boone Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, meaning the $175,000 donation will eventually result in $525,000. Added to that $525,000 is a $75,000 donation from the Bartlett Foundation last year. It does not qualify for the Pickens Match, but it does bring the endowment total to $600,000. Mark Sutton, executive director of the Gas Processors Association and secretary of the Gas Processors Suppliers Association, says he thought his group had maxed out on giving when it presented a scholarship last year that was matched by another scholarship within OSUIT. “Then the Pickens Match came up and the fact that we could ultimately create a scholarship fund worth $600,000 — that’s a pretty big incentive.” Student Justin Killion of Skiatook, Okla., started in the oil and gas industry after high school but now attends OSUIT because he realizes the importance of higher education in this field.

Checking out the electronics on a Caterpillar C7—six cylinder diesel engine are Mark Sutton, left, executive director of the Gas Processors Association, and students Justin Killion and Nick Shenberger. The industry needs to replenish technicians because the equipment is becoming more complex and many technicians are approaching retirement, says Steve Doede, division chair of the Automotive/Heavy Equipment and Vehicle Institute. “We help the natural gas industry by preparing graduates who understand engines and compressors and who also have knowledge and ability regarding the latest natural gas industry technologies.” The Natural Gas Compression program has been part of the OSUIT curriculum for 20 years. Both GPSA and GPA have been instrumental in the program’s development. Ten years ago OSUIT’s Natural Gas Compression Program became a standalone program in the Heavy Equipment and Vehicle Institute. Now, it’s the largest educational unit at the technical university and boasts a 100-percent employment rate for graduates. “OSUIT’s natural gas processing program has exceeded our expectations,” Sutton says. “We’re very support— Mark Sutton ive of academia, but this school puts virtually every one of its students into our business. They go in to the midstream business and stay in it. This is valuable for us because we know our scholarship donations help students who are going into our industry.”

“This is valuable for us because we know our scholarship donations help students going into our industry.”

R e x Daug h e r t y


Campus news

OSU #1 OSU leads osteopathic medical school pass rate for 2010 graduates Thanks to OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine’s advances in training students for the national board exam, OSU holds the No. 1 pass rate among 23 osteopathic medical schools tested. Every osteopathic medical student must pass the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners COMLEX Level 2 Performance Evaluation testing in order to graduate from medical school. OSU medical students take Level 2 of national board examinations, which includes a computer-based test and a performance evaluation, when they begin the fourth year of medical school.

Students have 14 minutes to examine and talk with the patient and nine minutes to write specific subjective, objective, assessment and plan notes. “In 2007 we began to improve our pass rates by changing how we prepared our students during these three early encounters,” says Joan Stewart, D.O., MPH and associate dean for Clinical Education. “We invested nearly $600,000 in new system hardware and software for recording and reviewing the student encounters and hired a staff person dedicated to overseeing the standardized patient program.” Emily Lim, the standardized patient

“In 2007 we began to improve our pass rates by changing how we prepared our students during these three early encounters.” — Joan Stewart During the performance evaluation, they see 12 standardized patients who are people trained to portray various illnesses. Students meet and examine the patients and are graded on their clinical and interpersonal skills. Preparation for the performance evaluation starts during the third year of medical school when students take part in three different standardized patient encounters. The “patient” presents with an ailment to the student doctor and then provides feedback about the student’s interpersonal and clinical skills.

education coordinator, is the driving force behind the preparation for the performance evaluation. “We are very fortunate to have someone with Emily’s talents,” Stewart says. “We bought the software and installed the cameras, but it was Emily who pulled it all together.” Lim schedules nearly 300 encounters each year and has undergone specialized training on the use of Education Management Solutions software, which times and records the student videos. She coordinates physicians who write

Emily Lim, left, and Joan Stewart, D.O., guide preparation for national board exams for medical students at OSU Center for Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine. new cases for the encounters, grade the filmed encounters and give feedback to the students. She also recruits “actors” from the community, helps train them in a variety of patient scenarios for practice encounters with students, and coordinates the center’s operations. “A big part of the students’ preparation is getting used to the time constraints. They tell me that it is invaluable,” Lim says. For the students, stakes are high. This is their preparation for the all-important National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners examination. “The school’s top scores are the result of a concerted effort by faculty and staff in Clinical Education and a significant investment by the college,” Stewart says. Becoming No. 1 in pass rate is validation of the time, effort, leadership and resources invested. “We have worked hard to make sure all our students are very well prepared for the exam,” Stewart says. “Our goal is to increase the number of standardized patient encounters our students have beginning as early as the first year of medical school.” M ar l a S c h a e f e r


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Campus news


Little-known club may become one of OSU’s biggest recruiters

O S U ’ s S h otg u n S p o r t s C l u b could become one of the university’s most effective recruiting tools once people realize it exists. Too many students have chosen colleges and universities other than OSU to pursue collegiate shooting sports because they didn’t realize OSU has a shotgun club, says team adviser Nathan Walker. “Oklahoma has a large pool of extremely gifted shooters, and it is unfortunate this misperception about the university exists,” says Walker, professor of turfgrass integrated pest management in the Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology. PERCEPTION CHANGING

While the club is little known now, supporters are willing to dream big. “Maybe a potential donor who loves to shoot would be interested in helping OSU build a world-class shooting facility in Stillwater,” says Glen Winters, a 1977 agricultural education alumnus and member of Oklahoma’s large sports shooting community. “With a top facility, OSU could recruit even more students and gain international

exposure by hosting state, college and national competitions.” Increased awareness and more sponsorship are already raising the club’s profile. Last year, membership grew from about a dozen students to more than 50. Recruitment possibilities for OSU are huge because Oklahoma has a large population of youth already active in the shooting sports through Oklahoma 4-H, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation


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and other state programs such as the Scholastic Clay Target Program. The OSU Shotgun Sports Club hits the bull’s-eye on two of OSU’s most important initiatives — recruitment and retention. “I see this club addressing those two issues directly,” Walker says. “Not only does knowledge of the club help recruit students to our university, it promotes involvement in student activities once they are here, which is a proven key to retention.” The OSU club joined the Scholastic Clay Target Program and received a competitive grant from the National Shooting Sports Foundation to host the second annual Cowboy shoot in March. The event attracted more than 70 participants from 17 different institutions to Oklahoma City. The grant also enabled the club to send a pair of five-member teams to the 43rd Intercollegiate Clay Target Championships in San Antonio, where they placed third overall in their division. Because of these activities, Midway USA Foundation Inc. established an endowment goal of $1 million, starting with a $5,000 donation from the Scholastic Shooting Sports Trust, and will match every dollar contributed to the endowment. Thanks to alumni, other donors and the matching funds from Midway USA Foundation, the endowment has climbed to nearly $25,000. “This will help us reach our goal much quicker,” Walker says. “Once fully funded, the endowment will generate enough funds annually to cover club activities and possibly scholarships.” NEW SHOOTING DIGS, EQUIPMENT NEEDED

The OSU Shotgun Sports Club promotes sporting clay, skeet and trap shooting for recreation or competition, and firearms safety. Club advisers include

assistant professors Kevin Allen of the Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management and Damon Smith of the Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology. Club members pay for shooting supplies, range fees and travel expenses, but efforts are underway to reduce these costs. For example, a grant from the National Rifle Association will cover the costs of ammunition and targets this fall. The OSU club has started using a Stillwater gun club’s facilities, enabling students to practice more without the expense of travel. Still, not all clay target shooting disciplines can be performed at the local facility. Walker says new equipment is also needed. When two OSU students’ guns broke during an intense competition in Missouri this spring, students faced additional hardship. Fortunately, Winters heard about the broken equipment and with the help of colleagues raised $2,000 so the club could participate in a Scholastic Shooting Sports program that resulted in three new club guns and $1,500 for the club’s endowment trust. “Thanks to alumni like Glen, we are able to offer students a greater experience now and in the future,” Walker says. Winters also spread the word among alumni and the campus community about the matching funds opportunity from Midway USA Foundation. It’s allowed Winters and others to dream of world-class facilities comparable to or better than those at well-established programs such as Texas A&M University, West Point, Fort Hayes State University and Lindenwold University, which currently have an advantage recruiting students interested in the sport. “Collegiate shooting sports is one of the fastest-growing collegiate competitive sports in the nation,” Walker says. “The club has made significant gains in the last year and is catching the attention of alumni and others who are enthusiastic about OSU and the shooting sports.” For more information or to donate to the trust, contact Nathan Walker at or visit

A Gift for a Healthy Future Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma gives $250,000 to OSU-Tulsa for student scholarships and health lab


klahoma recently ranked 46th nationally in major health status categories. It’s a startling statistic, but it’s one OSU-Tulsa and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma hope to change in the future. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma pledged $250,000 to OSU-Tulsa for scholarships and the creation of a lab for students studying health education and promotion. The lab and scholarship funding will prepare students to be leaders in improving the health and wellness of Oklahomans. “Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma is providing a wonderful resource to students who share this company’s passion for promoting a healthy lifestyle,” says Howard Barnett, president of OSU-Tulsa and the OSU Center for Health Sciences.

“We’re extremely grateful for this generous gift that will enhance our students’ educational experience as well as make Oklahoma communities healthier places to live and work.”

The gift demonstrates Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma’s commitment to a brighter, stronger and healthier future for all Oklahomans, says President Bert Marshall. “We know education is vital to improving public health, increasing disease prevention and lowering medical care costs. As corporations take a more active role in the health of their employees, there is a growing need for skilled health education professionals to lead wellness programs,” Marshall says. “Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma is proud to invest in

Health education and promotion students Patrick Simmons, left, Teddy Harbaugh and Rachel Potter test new equipment in the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma Health and Human Performance Lab at OSU-Tulsa.

high-quality OSU graduates who will inspire healthy changes in our society and improve the quality of life for many Oklahomans.” OSU-Tulsa created the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma Health and Human Performance Lab with $150,000 of the gift. The funds provided $50,000 in new lab equipment and a $100,000 endowment for ongoing lab maintenance. Rachel Potter, a health education and promotion senior, believes working in the new lab will give her confidence for her future career. “The new equipment in the health promotion lab gives me access to the latest technology and hands-on experience that will be useful when I first step into the clinical setting after graduation,” Potter says. The remaining $100,000 of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma gift will create student scholarships and will

be matched at a rate of 2-to-1 by OSU alumnus Boone Pickens as part of the $120 million Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program. When fully funded, this portion of the gift will provide $300,000 in endowed scholarship funds for OSU-Tulsa students. Scholarship recipients will complete 20 hours of community service or an internship each semester in a health-related field for a nonprofit organization, public school, church or similar agency within a five-mile radius of OSU-Tulsa. Clifton Lenore, a health education and promotion senior, says the new lab adds valuable skills and practice to his education. “With this lab, we can see the equipment and use it rather than just reading about it in a book or hearing about it in a lecture,” Lenore says. “It just brings everything together.” Tr i s h M c B e at h



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New program connects past, present and future OSU students

There’s a new program at OSU harnessing the power of social media to connect alumni, current students and future Cowboys. The weekly Tuesday Trivia contest presented by the OSU Alumni Association and OSU Communications asks an OSU trivia question every Tuesday morning on both entities’ Facebook pages and Twitter accounts. Anyone can take a guess at the answer by completing a short form on the Alumni Association’s website. “Tuesday Trivia allows us to engage everyone related to OSU,” says Chase Carter, director of communications for the OSU Alumni Association. “Prospective students can learn about OSU’s proud history and present-day achievements. Current students can build an affinity for their future alma mater. And alumni get to reminisce about their times here while

On the first Tuesday of each month, only active members of the Alumni Association are eligible to win the prize, which doubles in value to a $20 gift card. “Our members enjoy participating in Tuesday Trivia,” says Kathryn Bolay-Staude, director of membership and marketing for the OSU Alumni Association. “They are the greatest ambassadors for OSU, and this is one of many ways we can reward them for their involvement and support.” In February, Tuesday Trivia won the bronze award for the Best New Alumni Program at the Council of Advancement and Support of Education’s District IV Conference. To date, more than 1,000 people have participated in the contest, including nearly 250 current and future students and 150 friends and donors. Alumni winners have come from Oklahoma and beyond, including Arkansas, Florida, Kansas, Texas and Virginia. All members of the OSU family are invited to participate every Tuesday at

The correct answer is revealed on Tuesday afternoons, and an individual who answered correctly is randomly selected to win any number of prizes, from an OSU T-shirt to a $10 gift card from locations such as the OSU Student Store,, iTunes, and discovering how OSU is succeeding today. “Everyone who has been involved with the contest has enjoyed it.” Tuesday Trivia, which began last August, is engaging prospective students and also providing them an avenue to seek more information about an OSU education. “Participants have the option of submitting their name to receive more information about attending OSU,” says Gary Shutt, director of communications for OSU. “It’s a great way for current and prospective students to learn more about OSU and our outstanding students, faculty, staff and alumni.”

8:30 a.m. central time by following OSU and the OSU Alumni Association on Facebook and Twitter. For more information about Tuesday Trivia, including contest rules and the answer submission form, visit

“Like” Us on Facebook: Follow Us on Twitter:



hen an opportunity arose for Oklahoma food entrepreneurs

to showcase their products at the Dallas Gourmet Market,

international businessman David Howard stepped forward. “As an entrepreneur myself, I know how important it is to support others,” says Howard, founder and chief innovator of Unitherm Food Systems of Bristow, Okla. “My gift is a small part in backing Oklahoma entrepreneurs with advancing their businesses.” Unitherm’s monetary contribution, as well as support from the Made in Oklahoma program, created Oklahoma Gourmet, a group that represent clients of OSU’s Robert M. Kerr Food and Agricultural Products Center at the Gourmet Market in Dallas, Texas. “Participating in the Dallas Gourmet Market is a huge step for an entrepreneurial company,” says Andrea Graves, marketing specialist for OSU’s Food and Agricultural Products Center and responsible for implementing the Oklahoma Gourmet project. The Dallas Gourmet Market is a 25,000-square-foot shared showroom with unique gourmet and specialty food lines as well as housewares, cookware, tabletop, kitchen gadgets and wine accessories from more than 150 companies representing the biggest names in the industry as well as up-and-coming individual entrepreneurs. Because of Howard’s generosity, three entrepreneurial clients of OSU’s Food and Agricultural Products Center are showing their products in the Oklahoma Gourmet booth at the Dallas Gourmet Market. They are Twisted Chile of Tulsa, Ziegelmeier Toasted Pecan Butter of Ada and Suan’s Scotch Bonnet Pepper Jelly of Oklahoma City.


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The Gift of


David Howard, founder and chief innovator of Unitherm Food Systems, provided a financial gift to create Oklahoma Gourmet and support Oklahoma entrepreneurs at the Dallas Gourmet Market. photo / kylee willard

Unitherm has introduced the smoking process for 80 percent of all smoked turkey sold, launched numerous readymeal processes and cooked everything from pasta to chicken and jerky to peppers. Launching a food product into the vast, diverse and competitive world market is not the easiest thing to do, he says. “Unitherm attends trade shows domestically and internationally. Unless we get our products in front of the customer, the client is simply looking at drawings, not at the product, or in Unitherm’s case, a piece of equipment. A business can only be successful if you can sell your products.” Howard encourages companies not linked to OSU’s Food and Agricultural Products Center to find out how they can grow their businesses through the center. “This is a unique opportunity for both existing and new food companies to get expertise across all aspects of operating business,” Howard says. “I would like to encourage all companies that are involved in the food industry to get to know the scope and capability of the center.” K y l e e W i l l ard

For more information about Oklahoma Gourmet, visit, or contact the center at 405-744-6071 or email

photo / Julie Fitzgerald

These companies retail their products throughout Oklahoma, but the Gourmet Market is propelling them to the next level of marketing, selling and distributing, Graves says. “Not only have they found a new venue, but they also have made new contacts and increased sales in this early stage. “The funding provided by Mr. Howard helped us develop a new program to assist our entrepreneurial clients in spite of the current budgets cuts,” Graves says, “and enabled start-up companies to participate in the Gourmet Market at a reduced price.” As a result of exposure at the Gourmet Market, Suan’s Foods won the coveted Gourmet Gold Award for a scotch bonnet pepper jelly, which helped lead to national recognition as Editor’s Choice in Fancy Food magazine. “This is just one example of a ripple effect for these start-up companies,” Graves says. “Oklahoma Gourmet is a stepping stone for Oklahoma food entrepreneurs to take that leap into becoming more than just a small business.” Howard says the companies’ success will determine whether Oklahoma Gourmet becomes a permanent fixture at the show. “Success in the Dallas Gourmet Market is good for preparing entrepreneurs and also good for securing contracts and growing business in Oklahoma,” he says. Howard is a member of the Industry Advisory Committee for OSU’s Food and Agricultural Products Center. He says Director Roy Escoubas spotted the opportunity to help Oklahomans grow their businesses through the Dallas Gourmet Market. “The Industry Advisory Committee wants to see more companies enter the market,” says Howard, who founded Unitherm in the United Kingdom in 1985 and relocated to the United States in 1995. An industry leader, Howard is known for having an innovative mindset in the creation and design of machines and systems. He believes safety, efficiency and innovation has allowed Unitherm to be competitive in developing food processes.

Suan Grant, owner of Suan’s Scotch Bonnet Pepper Jelly of Oklahoma City, Okla., won the coveted Gourmet Gold Award during the Dallas Gourmet Market in January. Grant surpassed the competition in the Best Condiment: Jelly/Jams/ Preserves category in the areas of taste, originality and packaging.


PHOTO / Genesee photo systems

Seniors of Significance The Seniors of Significance Award presented by the OSU Alumni Association recognizes students for excellence in scholarship, leadership and community service and for bringing distinction to OSU. The 2010-2011 Seniors of Significance represent approximately 1 percent of the graduating class. They were honored at a public banquet on Dec. 2, 2010, at the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center.

Paul Barbour, Guthrie, Okla.,

Jessica Fernandez-Flack, Lawton,

Laura Merriman, Holdenville, Okla.,


Okla., political science & sociology

biosystems engineering

Jeremy Bennett, Yukon, Okla.,

Katie Foley, Tulsa, Okla., child & family

Sarah Oppel, Albuquerque, N.M.,

environmental science


biochemistry and molecular biology

Karolyn Bolay, Perry, Okla., agricultural

Gretchen Frost, Petersburg, Ill., animal

Cody Ott, Fairview, Okla., agribusiness



Stephanie Bowen, Newcastle, Okla.,

Sarah Fry, Omega, Okla., agribusiness

agricultural communications

John Brooks, Gore, Okla., political science

Allison Brown, Edmond, Okla., history & political science

Megan Bryant, Pawnee, Okla., animal science

Austin Burton, Oklahoma City, Okla., civil engineering

Huyen Cao, Oklahoma City, Okla., communication sciences disorders

Emily Cole, Edmond, Okla., management & entrepreneurship Haley Cosner, Gans, Okla., finance  Amalia Deines, Shattuck, Okla., accounting 

Jessica DeLong, Harrah, Okla., accounting

J. Connor Ferguson, Norman, Okla., plant & soil science


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Katie Fuchs, Elk City, Okla., accounting Katie Gruntmeir, Kingfisher, Okla., agricultural education 

Courtney Hargis, Mooreland, Okla., early childhood education

Andrew Henry, Fort Towson, Okla., economics/pre-law

Blair Kirkpatrick, Bartlesville, Okla., accounting

Stefanie Krull, Stilwell, Kan., history & German

Crystal LaGrone, Haskell, Ark., political science

Allison Lyons, Edmond, Okla., accounting/pre-law

David McKellips, Tulsa, Okla., accounting & finance

Lydia Meador, Tulsa, Okla., botany & microbiology

Erin Prutow, Newtown, Pa., political science & philosophy

Andrea Richardson, Pittsburg, Okla., nutritional sciences

Teresa Richert, Tulsa, Okla., nutritional sciences

Johnna Lynn Rushin, Mustang, Okla., agricultural economics and accounting

Dillon Sparks, Hennepin, Okla., animal science/ranch operations

Devin Stanfield, Oklahoma City, Okla., management information systems

Ben Stukenborg, Tulsa, Okla., architecture

Wyatt Swinford, Okemah, Okla., agribusiness

Maria Vera, Tulsa, Okla., chemical engineering

Whitney Wernimont, Rowlett, Texas, nutritional sciences

It Pays to be a Member... Even as a Student! The NEW Life Membership Student Program offers students a savings of up to $400 on their Alumni Association life membership. With one click, students can now become life members through a bursar charge payment plan.

By being a member, students can

save more than $300 annually with the Orange Savings Connection!

Begin your student’s connection today with the NEW Life Membership Student Program by visiting or reading the story on page 11!

201 ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center Stillwater, OK 74078-7043 TEL 405.744.5368 • FAX 405.744.6722

Honoring a Endowed professorship will strengthen English Department and help in bid for Phi Beta Kappa chapter at OSU

Trish Houston Prawl says her late husband, Bill Houston, would be pleased that a professorship established in his name will benefit the OSU English Department. 28

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illiam “Bill” S. Houston once said, “The basis of any good education is a good background in English.” After his passing in October 2008, his wife, Trish Houston Prawl, wanted to honor her husband through a major donation that would transform the OSU English Department. For about three years, Houston Prawl has helped raise funds to endow the Houston-Truax-Wentz Professorship to recognize English faculty and staff. The naming of the fund honors not just Houston, but also Houston Prawl’s family through her maiden name of Truax, and Lew Wentz. Wentz was a Ponca City oilman who made a $50,000 gift to thenOklahoma A&M College in 1926 for a student-loan endowment. When he passed away in 1949, he left 20 percent of his estate to OAMC. All together, he provided more than $6 million to ensure others received an opportunity he didn’t get — the chance to pursue a college education.

Vision “Mr. Wentz was one of OSU’s most important donors,” says Houston Prawl, administrator of the Lew Wentz Foundation, which today provides scholarships and work study programming at OSU. “Thousands of students have benefited from his love and vision for Oklahoma. “I believe that we need to strengthen our English Department and recognize the professors,” says Houston Prawl, a 1974 accounting graduate. “We have outstanding faculty, and they are under-recognized on campus for their qualifications and abilities. I know this is what Bill would have wanted for the university.” Although Houston was an OSU accounting professor, he received his undergraduate degree in English at Baylor University.

“Other departments at OSU have benefited from having endowed scholarships and professorships,” says Houston Prawl, owner of Houston Wealth Management in Stillwater. “The English Department has none. I thought it was a great idea to show appreciation to the faculty and to honor Bill’s idea.” The funding for this professorship, which has totaled more than $250,000 in gifts and commitments, has come from many different contributors. Half of that amount comes from gifts from Houston’s estate and an additional commitment from Houston Prawl. And through fundraising efforts spearheaded by her, more than 50 others have also made gifts and pledges that combine to push the endowment to the level where it qualifies for a match from Boone Pickens’ 2008 challenge gift for faculty endowments and the State Regents for Higher Education. Once those matches are realized, the fund will grow to at least $750,000. “Mr. Pickens’ whole challenge and vision for Oklahoma State is just fabulous,” Houston Prawl says. “The idea of leveraging gifts is marvelous. We’ve had a lot of people who have never given in the past step up and give gifts. I just can’t thank Mr. Pickens enough for everything he’s done for Oklahoma State. This professorship is very important to that department.” Carol Moder, professor and head of the Department of English, is grateful for every donor who contributed, and she appreciates the commitment and perseverance shown by Houston Prawl in envisioning and promoting this position. “The professorship will allow the English Department to attract a nationally known scholar in literature who will serve as a focus for undergraduate and graduate student studies,” Moder says. “The professorship will help to fund faculty- and student research-related activities. It will also provide greatly needed resources for scholarly activities such as bringing in a visiting lecturer or expert to OSU.” Robert Graalman, director of Scholar Development and Recognition, is also thankful to Houston Prawl for her leadership and tireless efforts to establish this professorship.

“Following her lead, donors from disciplines across campus came together to help,” Graalman says. “This is really a great display of interdisciplinary excitement for such an important department.” The professorship is expected to aid in the effort to start an OSU chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the most prestigious undergraduate honor society in the country. Perry Gethner, head of the foreign languages department and chair of OSU’s Phi Beta Kappa application committee, says having a chapter at OSU will help showcase students studying humanities, social sciences and natural sciences.

“One of the most impressive aspects of the professorship is that the donors are alumni from a variety of programs who recognize the importance of English to a well-rounded liberal arts education at OSU.” — Carol Moder “If we are successful in our efforts at establishing a Phi Beta Kappa chapter here, it will confirm that OSU’s undergraduate experience is impressive and significant,” Gethner says. “OSU students have for many years performed at very high levels that would have qualified them for Phi Beta Kappa, but sadly, they have been denied that opportunity. This effort is to ensure that doesn’t happen any longer.” The professorship illustrates OSU’s commitment to excellence in the humanities, Moder says. “One of the most impressive aspects of the professorship is that the donors are alumni from a variety of programs who recognize the importance of English to a well-rounded liberal arts education at OSU. That is precisely the kind of commitment that would be meaningful to Phi Beta Kappa.” Katie Ann Robinson


Seniors O K LAHOMA


Jeremy Bennett

Emily Cole

environmental science, Yukon, Okla.

management and entrepreneurship, Edmond, Okla.

Bennett has served as vice chairman of the Sustainability Committee and been involved in the Student Government Association, the Native American Student Association and the Environmental Science Club. He has volunteered for Habitat for Humanity, the Oklahoma Water Watch Program and the Real Pokes Tailgate Recycling Program. He was also named a Morris K. Udall Scholar and a Truman Scholar finalist. “OSU’s commitment to providing students with a learning experience far beyond the classroom has given me confidence for my future career, and for that I will be forever grateful,” Bennett says. Bennett plans to pursue a master’s degree at OSU in international agriculture, teach agricultural and leadership courses in either Sierra Leone or the Republic of Congo and eventually work for the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture.

Connor Ferguson plant and soil science, Norman, Okla.

Ferguson has been involved in the Interfraternity Council, Alpha Tau Omega, the Student Government Association and the Agronomy Club. He has volunteered his time with Stillwater Mobile Meals, St. John’s Catholic Church and BirthChoice Stillwater. Ferguson was a member of OSU’s 2010 Homecoming royalty court, a Golden Opportunity Scholar and a Sitlington Outstanding Student in Plant and Soil Sciences. “During my past four years at OSU, I have been blessed with having some of the best advisers and mentors who have shaped me into the person and leader that I am today,” Richardson says. “Given the help of my parents, advisers and the abundant opportunities available to students at OSU, I know I can confidently enter the next step of my academic and professional career equipped to solve the problems that must be addressed during my lifetime.” Ferguson plans to pursue a master’s degree in agronomy with a concentration in weed sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and then pursue a Ph.D. in an agronomicrelated field. He hopes to return to OSU as a professor.



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Cole’s activities include the University Student Honors Council, the Blue Key Honor Society, the Business Student Council and the Student Alumni Board. She has volunteered for Kids Across America, Relay for Life and Henderson Hills Baptist Church. She was named a ConocoPhillips SPIRIT Scholar and was on the President’s Honor Roll in 2007, 2009 and 2010. “OSU has not only fully prepared me to be successful in the businesses world and beyond, but also taught me the value of hard work, dedication and true friendship,” Cole says. “OSU is more than just a university, it is the traditions, the students, the camaraderie and the united commitment to excellence in all areas of life.” Cole plans to work for ConocoPhillips in Houston and to pursue an MBA.

Jessica L. Fernandes-Flack political science and sociology, Lawton, Okla.

Fernandes-Flack has been involved with the OSU Student Foundation, the Arts and Sciences Student Council, the President’s Leadership Council and the Student Alumni Board. She has volunteered for Grace Living Center, Renaissance Assisted Living Center and Big Brothers Big Sisters. She received the DHS-STEM Homeland Security grant and was an undergraduate research intern for the University of Delaware Disaster Research Center. She was an Arts and Sciences Top Ten Senior and a Top 15 Homecoming royalty candidate. “My time at Oklahoma State has contributed to my personal, academic and vocational growth,” she says. “Most importantly, OSU has instilled the philanthropic desire to give back to the community that has so unselfishly given to me.” After graduating in December 2010, she began pursuing a master’s degree in fire and emergency management at OSU.



Amalia Christine Deines accounting, Shattuck, Okla.

Deines has served in various positions with the Business Student Council and the Financial Management Association. Deines has volunteered for Sunnybrook Church, Salem Lutheran Church and OSU’s Big Event and Into the Streets programs. Deines was named the Outstanding OSU Student Volunteer of the Year and an Outstanding Member of the Spears School of Business Ambassadors Program. “My path at OSU has enhanced my values and work ethic through my classes, leadership challenges and community service,” Deines says. “Now as a senior, I am prepared to carry my OSU experience to the corporate world and wherever life takes me.” Deines plans to work for Koch Industries’ accounting group in Wichita, Kan.

Stefanie Marie Krull history and German, Stilwell, Kan.

Krull served as president and founder of the International Justice Mission and has also been involved with Junior Greek Life, the Undergraduate Admissions Office, Blue Key Honor Society and Campus Crusade for Christ. She has volunteered for Stillwater United Methodist Church and OSU’s Into the Streets and Big Event programs. Krull was also named a Top Ten Freshman Woman and a Top 15 Homecoming royalty candidate. “Oklahoma State has given me opportunities to grow personally and academically, courage to take risks inside and outside the classroom, faculty role models to emulate, and confidence to enter the future knowing that my Cowboy family will always be there, wherever life takes me,” Krull says. Krull plans to work as an English teaching assistant in Germany as a part of the Fulbright Program.

The Outstanding Senior Award recognizes students who distinguish themselves at OSU through academic achievement; campus and community activities; academic, athletic or extracurricular honors or awards; and scholarships and work ethic. After reviewing the students’ applications, the OSU Alumni Association Student Awards and Selection Committee met with the 41 Seniors of Significance who were honored in the fall of 2010 and selected 12 to receive this prestigious honor. The 2011 Outstanding Seniors were honored at a public banquet April 25 at the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center.

Lydia R. Meador

Sarah Oppel

botany and microbiology, Broken Arrow, Okla.

biochemistry and molecular biology, Albuquerque, N.M.

Meador’s activities include Golden Key International Honor Society, the Campus Girl Scouts, Stout Hall Government, the Microbiology Club and the OSU Botanical Society. She volunteered for Habitat for Humanity plus the Women in Science conference and the Society of Women Engineers Girl Scout day. Meador won the Botanical Society of America 2010 Young Botanist Award and was named a Barry M. Goldwater Scholar and the Dan Wesley A&S Outstanding Junior. “As a first-generation college student, I never imagined I would be able to achieve so much during the past four years,” Meador says. “I feel my time at OSU was well spent, and I am so grateful for all the amazing opportunities OSU has offered me.” Meador plans to begin a Ph.D. program in a research area related to plant genetic engineering. She is most interested in utilizing plants to produce medicine, including vaccines.

Andrea Richardson nutritional sciences, Pittsburg, Okla.

Richardson has served as president and treasurer of the College of Human Environmental Sciences Student Council and has been involved with the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, the Homecoming Steering Committee and Mortar Board. Richardson volunteered for the Stillwater Medical Center Emergency Room, the Stillwater Community Health Center, Stillwater Domestic Violence Services and the Humane Society of Stillwater. She was named the College of Human Environmental Sciences Outstanding Undergraduate Student and has been on the President’s Honor Roll every semester. “I am forever grateful to Oklahoma State University — a university built on a foundation of excellence and integrity that has provided me abundant opportunities for success in a genuinely amiable environment,” she says. “Regardless of where my future endeavors lead me, the hues of orange will guide me home to OSU.” Richardson plans to attend medical school.

Oppel’s activities include the American Student Dental Association, Alpha Zeta Agriculture Honor Society and Kappa Alpha Theta. She also served as the SPURS spirit team president. Oppel volunteered for the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy and the Read Across America program. She was named a Wentz Scholar and was on the President’s Honor Roll for four years. “My education at Oklahoma State University has prepared me for my future career as a dentist,” Oppel says. “I have had an amazing four years at OSU and I have received remarkable support from staff and students and have made friendships that I will carry with me throughout life.” Oppel plans to attend Creighton University Dental School in Omaha, Neb., and would like to practice dentistry in New Mexico.

Devin Danyelle Stanfield management information systems, Oklahoma City

Stanfield’s activities include the African American Student Association, where she served as secretary, vice president and president, as well as Delta Sigma Theta sorority, the ConocoPhillips SPIRIT Scholar Peer Leadership board, the Freshman Action Team and the African American Business Student Association. Stanfield volunteered for the Payne County Youth Shelter, the Stillwater Humane Society and Stillwater Domestic Violence Services. She was also named the ConocoPhillips SPIRIT Scholar for three years and a Lew Wentz Leadership Scholar for two years. “I wouldn’t have made it here today without the motherly nudge from advisers to apply for awards, the fatherly advice from professors on how to study and succeed in class, the familial trust peers had in me to lead them, and the loving support from everyone,” Stanfield says. “OSU is like being a part of another family, and I’ll always remain loyal and true.” Stanfield plans to take her mom and grandmother on a cruise and then begin her career.

Erin Christine Prutow political science and philosophy, Newtown, Penn.

Prutow’s activities include the OSU Equestrian team, the NCAA Student Athlete Advisory Committee and the Mortar Board Honor Society. She volunteered for the OSU Student Athlete Advisory Committee and was named to the President’s Honor Roll from 2007 to 2010 and to the Big XII Conference Commissioner’s Honor Roll. “I have learned graduation is only a concept in life, one we are presented with daily, and OSU has taught me to grasp that idea, to pay it forward everyday and make a difference.” Prutow plans to attend law school.

Wyatt Daniel Swinford agribusiness, Okemah, Okla.

Swinford’s activities include the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Student Council, Farm Credit of Eastern Oklahoma, OSU Homecoming Steering committee and Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity. He has volunteered with the AGR Winter Bonanza, Coaches versus Cancer and Habitat for Humanity. He was named the OSU Homecoming King, a Top Ten Freshman Man, an OSU Senior of Significance and an Outstanding Tour Guide. “Oklahoma State has provided an environment for me to grow, develop and gain knowledge,” Swinford says. “Without a doubt, there is no better place than OSU to become who you are truly meant to be.” Swinford plans to attend law school at the University of Arkansas to focus on agricultural, energy and environmental law.


Friendly Competition

Veterinary alumni establish two ways to give dollars for student scholarships

As education costs continue to rise and state dollars continue to dwindle, OSU veterinary alumni and development personnel put their heads together to find the best way to maximize donors’ gifts — setting up two scholarships to benefit future veterinary medicine students. “The Alumni and Friends Endowed Scholarship Fund” was established encouraging 1,000 alumni and friends to each donate $1,000. The funds donated will create an endowment to support veterinary student scholarships for years to come. Cash gifts and pledges qualified for varying amounts from the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, giving donors the maximum benefit for their generosity. The fun began when alumni classes started comparing notes to see which class has raised the most money. It became even more interesting when a non-OSU graduate faculty member challenged faculty, staff and the Veterinary Administrative Council to raise more

than the alumni. Commitments thus far are $131,660. With the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, the total impact is $372,907. The Veterinary Administrative Council, faculty and staff donated $27,008. The top five classes gave $40,730: „  Class of 1968 — $15,300 „  Class of 1965 — $8,000 „  Class of 1969 — $6,600 „  Class of 1982 — $5,530 „  Class of 1962 — $5,300 “My partner, Dr. Steve Weir, class of 1980, and I make a concerted effort to donate to the veterinary center every year,” says Dr. Bob Shoup, class of 1982. “We feel very fortunate to be in this profession. “We enjoy the work and make a good living at it. We want to give others the opportunity to experience the same satisfaction and success in their careers.” The second opportunity to support veterinary student scholarships came as a tribute to the career of Dr. Michael Lorenz, who is stepping down as dean of the veterinary center. His classmates, the class of 1969, joined with the class of 1960 to create the Dean Michael D. Lorenz Endowed Scholarship. Gifts made

to this scholarship were also eligible for the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match making the $70,519 in gifts and pledges worth $170,519 when matched. “Dr. Lorenz has done a wonderful job as dean with the limited funding the school receives, and we were glad to have the chance to honor him by giving to his scholarship,” Shoup says. “If more veterinary graduates would give small amounts of money regularly, it would benefit the veterinary center more than if we just wait for someone to hit a home run with a large donation.” The generosity of these alumni and friends of OSU’s veterinary center means that the excellent programs and the promise of graduating competent, confident, practice-ready veterinarians will continue well into the future. “It is the foresight and goodness of heart that our alumni and friends demonstrate that make me proud to be an OSU Cowboy veterinarian,” Lorenz says. “We all know that budgets are tight, the costs keep rising. Our donors realize the importance of quality programs, top faculty and sound buildings and equipment, and they are willing to back it with financial support. We are forever grateful and appreciative of their loyalty to OSU’s veterinary center.” D e r i nda B l a k e n e y

For information on how to maximize your donation or contribute to the center’s current projects or needs, contact Amanda Davis at 405-385-5607 or


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“We want to give others the opportunity to experience the same satisfaction and success in their careers.” — Dr. Bob Shoup PHOTOS / PHIL SHOCKLEY


It started out as a 14-day visit to Haiti for Dr. Keith Flanagan, class of 1978, who was working with classmate Dr. Lyndon Graf in Marlow, Okla. Next thing he knew, Flanagan was asking his wife, Jan, what she thought about living in Haiti.


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“I started working with Christian Veterinary Mission,” Flanagan says. “I planned to work for a couple years and straighten things out in Haiti. You know, set up some programs, train people in animal healthcare and then come back to the states. Twenty-three years later we’re still here. We make headway in some areas, and then more doors of opportunity always seem to open.” French and Haitian Creole are the official languages of the 10,714-squaremile Caribbean island located southeast of Florida. Some of the veterinary challenges include vaccinating all dogs and cats against rabies, controlling new diseases that appear, and training and maintaining an ample supply of veterinarians.

Dr. Keith Flanagan, right, is working with Dr. Max Millien, the Haitian chief veterinary officer, to eradicate classical swine fever in Haiti, a goal they hope to accomplish within the next decade. “Last year we diagnosed Porcine Teschovirus, which is killing Haiti’s pigs in large numbers,” Flanagan says. “This disease was eradicated in Eastern Europe several years ago, so they stopped manufacturing the vaccine more than 15 years ago. It would cost about $1 million to start the vaccine process so we’re looking at other alternatives to produce it.” When the 2010 earthquake rocked Haiti, the Ministry of Agriculture, with whom Flanagan works closely, was in the middle of Haiti’s annual rabies vaccination program, which abruptly halted.

“I never get bored working here,” “We had already vaccinated about 75 “And we’re implementing a new percent of the estimated population of dogs Flanagan says. “I have been able to do program to help keep young veterinarians training, clinical work, public health work, and cats in the areas hardest hit by the in Haiti. They only earn between $300 earthquake, which was a real break for us.” research — different facets of veterinary and $400 a month. Christian Veterinary medicine. That’s what I like about veterinary Mission is buying 70 motorcycles. Each Flanagan reports that initially everymedicine — it’s a varied profession within one scrambled to take care of personal veterinarian who signs a contract to work the profession, and I have been able to stay problems — getting shelters made, injured for a year will get to keep the motorcycle. involved in a lot of those different areas.” people treated, and helping people leave “We’re also providing them with a And he says the impact of what he does small generator that will fit on the back of the capitol for safer ground. reaches further than it would in the U.S. The veterinary mission saw the need the motorcycle, a laptop computer and a “Recently I took a boy to a local hospito encourage a partnership with the PowerPoint projector. That way, they can tal to get fitted for an artificial arm. The U.S. Military Veterinary Corps and the travel to the farmers in various communihospital receptionist recognized me. I had Minister of Agriculture to continue the ties and train them on animal care and helped her mother take one of their pigs rabies vaccination program. Dr. Max other important community development to market more than 15 years ago. We Millien, the Haitian chief veterinary offitopics. Other organizations can hire them started loading pigs at 2:30 a.m. so we cer, was excited about the offer. to train Haitians in their programs, which could leave by 4:30 a.m. and arrive in Port Among those deployed was Dr. Ryan will bring the young veterinarians addiau Prince by 7 a.m. before it got hot. McCollum, class of 2009. tional income,” Flanagan says. “The money from the pig sale bought “I was mobilized with the 43rd “Hopefully that will keep the veterinartin to cover the family’s house,” he says. Medical Detachment (Veterinary Services) ians in Haiti where they are so needed. “That’s having an impact on people’s in the days following the earthquake,” Not only will the veterinarians benefit, lives without realizing the extent of your McCollum says. Our initial task was to but the animal owners will also. Recently, involvement at the time. When I helped take care of the large number of military some missionary friends who live in a that woman sell her pig 15 years ago at and civilian search dogs that were looking very remote area called me to have a dog a premium price, I had no idea what it for survivors in the Haitian rubble.” neutered. I was able to refer them to a meant to that family.” Unfortunately, McCollum says, it took young veterinarian who had participated Next on the horizon for Flanagan is more than one week to get air transport in a surgery training we’d held. My friends eradicating classical swine fever in Haiti. into Port Au Prince, the capital of Haiti, were very pleased with the result,” he says. For the past six years, he has worked with where the quake struck. “I pray that one day when I am gone, Millien as the co-director of the national “By the time the unit arrived, most of these programs and this work will keep the working dogs had gone home. We were classical swine fever eradication program. moving forward.” “We hope to accomplish that in the then assigned a mission in northern Haiti D e r i nda B l a k e n e y next five to ten years,” he says. to continue distributing and administering rabies vaccine,” he says. “Ryan’s unit and other Army personnel were able to administer about 9,500 doses “I pray that one day when I am gone, these programs and this in 18 days in some very remote parts of the work will keep moving forward.” — Dr. Keith Flanagan country,” says Flanagan. “The military’s support to the rabies vaccination program was very helpful and a real morale boost to the Haitian veterinary profession. “It took pressure off our local system at a time when those resources could be used elsewhere to help with the earthquake relief effort. Some of that vaccine was about to expire, so we needed to give as many doses as quickly as possible. The military made that possible. Nationwide, more than 412,000 dogs and cats were courtesy PHOTOs vaccinated.” Mobilized following the Haiti earthquake, the 43rd Medical Detachment helped With the rabies program under control, distribute and administer rabies vaccine in northern Haiti. Nationwide, veterinarFlanagan will focus on training and keepians vaccinated more than 412,000 dogs and cats. From left, Dr. Jason Crawford, ing veterinarians in Haiti and working Dr. Kelly Crowdis, Dr. Keith Flanagan and Dr. Ryan McCollum, class of 2009 and productively. a member of the 43rd Medical Detachment, worked together to make Haiti’s rabies vaccination campaign a success.


Energy leader and OSU alumnus Boone Pickens announces a $100 million donation to Branding Success: The Campaign for Oklahoma State University on Feb. 26, 2010. Pickens’ gift created the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, which has led to $191.5 million in commitments for student support.

Matching program inspires 2,665 donors as campaign surpasses $374 million total in student support. 36

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The OSU Foundation credits the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program for generating $191.5 million for student scholarships in connection with OSU’s $1 billion Branding Success campaign. OSU alumnus Boone Pickens announced the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program on Feb. 26, 2010, with an initial $100 million challenge gift. Then in January 2011, he increased the challenge gift by $20 million when he learned the match initiative had generated a record number of qualified gifts. In all, these matches and gifts boost the Branding Success total past $374 million toward the $500 million goal for scholarships. “The Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program has been an incredible success,” says Ross McKnight, who co-chairs the Branding Success campaign with his wife, Billie. “The Pickens Match program was the big reason we raised a record level of gifts and

President Burns Hargis announced a $100 million gift from Pickens to endow faculty positions. That matching program is credited with raising an additional $68 million in 40 days. The gifts, commitments and matches have created 123 new chairs and professorships to date. “We are very pleased with where we are in our campaign to raise $1 billion for student scholarships, professorships, research and new facilities,” Hargis says. “While we have already raised more money through gifts and commitments than ever before, I am most pleased we have also had a record number of donors, particularly new donors, investing in OSU. “Every gift or commitment matters,” Hargis says. “Boone’s gifts have inspired many and instill confidence in the future. Our commitment at OSU is to prepare our students to succeed by creating an engaging educational experience, encouraging the exchange of

Every gift or commitment matters. Boone’s gifts have inspired many and instill confidence in the future.” — OSU President Burns Hargis pledges for scholarships in a relatively short period of time. It was a brilliant idea and it exceeded everyone’s expectation,” McKnight says. “We appreciate Boone’s indescribable generosity to OSU and the 2,665 other donors who stepped up to meet his challenge. We have now raised more than $735 million toward our overall $1 billion goal.” Pickens, known internationally as a philanthropist, businessman and leading voice on energy, says he never doubted OSU supporters would meet his challenge. “OSU is special. It is good to see many OSU grads and friends getting behind the campaign. They love OSU, just as I do, and they want it to be the best in everything — academically and athletically. “We enjoy strong leadership at OSU, and the leaders have big plans,” Pickens says. “They need resources to expand opportunities for aspiring students from across Oklahoma, this country and around the world. Now we will have the money to make it happen and move OSU to the top.” The scholarship match is Pickens’ second match program at OSU. In 2008, OSU

ideas and sharpening their critical-thinking skills. This commitment requires a significant investment of resources. The Branding Success campaign will provide the additional resources OSU needs to elevate support for students and faculty members.” The OSU Foundation reports more than 660 new scholarship and graduate fellowships have been endowed since the start of the campaign, including 316 added as part of the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match. Eighty existing scholarships also benefited from Pickens’ challenge. “Scholarships are the top priority in our campaign,” says Kirk Jewell, CEO and president of the OSU Foundation. “We never want the lack of financial support to stand in the way of students earning a degree from OSU.” For more information about Branding Success: The Campaign for Oklahoma State University, visit


THE PICKENS LEGACY SCHOLARSHIP MATCH was created by an initial $100 million challenge gift from T. Boone Pickens. After an amazing donor response, he added another $20 million and expanded the program to have greater and quicker impact for OSU students.

T H A N K YO U ! Mr. Pickens, for creating the momentum. Your bold challenge and legendary generosity inspired

2,665 DONORS

to follow your lead,

increasing student support in a way unprecedented in OSU’s 121-year history.

Individuals, companies & foundations for stepping up the pace. Your incredible selflessness combined for a

$191.5 MILLION statement of encouragement for

the leaders of tomorrow, who will perpetually benefit from more than $9.5 million in new annual support.

For transforming higher education in Oklahoma. This addition of

316 NEW SCHOLARSHIPS and graduate fellowships along with enhancement

of 80 more will help OSU invite every student to dream big, work hard and exceed expectations through lifechanging opportunities.

Catch the vision for this historic initiative, hear stories of impact and learn more at

photo / Phil Shockley

Family First John and Cathy Jameson credit OSU with providing a strong foundation for their success.

athy and John Jameson come from a long lineage of orange. Cathy’s family alone has 28 OSU graduates, and the couple first met on campus as students. Since attending OSU, both have found success in their careers and their personal lives. John led his own dental practice while managing a successful ranching operation. Cathy has worked as an elementary school teacher, a rancher, a performer, an author and business management coach, and now she is CEO of Jameson Management. Though their successes have taken them far, the two agree OSU nurtured a love of learning in their lives and laid the foundation for the many accomplishments they have achieved. Although their relationship was fostered during their time as students at OSU, their bond began out of something a little less traditional. “More or less our relationship started because of a horse,” John says. John and Cathy were first introduced through John’s sister, Judy, who was Cathy’s roommate and sorority sister in Chi Omega. One weekend Cathy, Judy


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and their two other roommates traveled to Jameson ranch in Davis, Okla., where Cathy fell in love with a horse and bought it. She later needed help training the horse, and John came to her assistance. “My grandmother said I would never be happy unless I married a horseman,” Cathy says. “Well, John is a third generation horseman, and I fell head over heels in love with this Cowboy!” Cathy grew up in Bartlesville, Okla., where she recalls a lot of her peers decided to go to other schools after their high school graduation, but she always had OSU in the back of her mind. “I grew up with orange in my blood,” says Cathy, whose uncle was a twotime OSU wrestling champion. She had attended many sporting events, including wrestling matches, held at the university. John’s family also had a long OSU tradition. His mother enrolled at Oklahoma A&M in 1944 and got a degree in home economics. His father came to OSU before he enlisted in the Army to participate in World War II.

Both say a lot of family and friends actively recruited them to the university. When John was considering what college to go to, Wes Watkins was the assistant director of admissions. John says Watkins encouraged him to attend the university. Cathy says the wife of her father’s architect partner, Anne Cramer Williams, played a significant role in recruiting her to the school. Cathy says her influence and that of others made OSU seem like a great place, but it wasn’t until she actually visited the campus that she knew it was the right school for her. She says energy and spirit are the two words she would use to describe it. “When I visited OSU for the first time, I fell in love with the campus and spirit of OSU,” she says. “I found a very warm environment from the moment I walked on campus.” While at OSU, Cathy was involved in a number of activities including the Student Union Activities Board, the Education Student Council and Chi Omega. In addition to her involvement on campus, Cathy

Although she has nothing but wonderful accolades for the University of Nebraska, Cathy says it was very different from OSU. “At OSU, we welcome people with open arms and speak to one another whether we know them or not,” she says. “Over time I made very good friends at the University of Nebraska, but the warmth of the OSU community is unique.”


fter graduating, Cathy taught for three years in Omaha’s Millard Public School system at Montclair Elementary, where she was involved in a number of unconventional teaching methods such as team teaching, individualized instruction and a no-grade curriculum. She says her collegiate experiences along with teaching

The school also introduced her to the digital world of academia. Cathy went on to receive her doctorate in applied management from Walden University in Minneapolis in 2010, again participating in a hybrid educational program. Distance learning programs like the ones Cathy participated in at Goddard and Walden make it possible to continue learning throughout life, which Cathy says make them a wonderful addition to traditional education.

“At OSU, we welcome people with open arms and speak to one another whether we know them or not.” — Cathy Jameson worked two jobs, one for the library and one for the College of Education. “I don’t know how many boards I was on, to tell you the truth,” Cathy says. “The scholarship money was so important and made it possible for me to go to school and be actively involved on campus.” Cathy started at OSU in the fall of 1967 as an elementary education major. She and John married Jan. 17, 1970, and John graduated a few months later with a degree in zoology. Soon John was accepted to Creighton University School of Dentistry, and the newly married couple moved to Omaha, Neb. While John was a freshman in dental school, Cathy was a senior at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She finished her last year of undergraduate studies there and received her bachelor’s degree in education in 1971.

at Montclair continue to influence her management style today. After teaching at Montclair, she began her master’s degree in psychology at Nebraska. John graduated from dental school in 1974 and soon the family moved back to Oklahoma. Cathy continued pursuing her master’s degree part time at East Central University. She eventually received her master’s in psychology in 1989 from Goddard University in Plainville, Vt., as a part of its distance-learning program. As a young mother with two small children at the time, Cathy says the school’s hybrid program of online and on-campus classes worked well for her. “I’ve never been around people so driven by the heart and so driven to make a difference as the students and faculty of Goddard College. The experience was impressive on my life,” she says.

From the beginning of her higher-level education at OSU in 1967 to receiving her doctorate degree in 2010, Cathy says she never stopped learning and never stopped taking classes. “I love the learning process,” Cathy says. “The more I have learned, the more I see how much remains to be learned.”


athy says continued education is an important part of Jameson Management’s success. She continues her own education out of a sense of responsibility to her clients, to stay on the cutting edge of her field and to be a leader of her team, which consists of 12 OSU alumni. It is this love for learning and her knowledge of various fields of study that led Cathy to start her now renowned management company, Jameson (continues on next page) 41

Management Inc. The company was a product of the economic recession of the 1980s when many cut back on healthcare spending. “A lot of dental practitioners were suffering at the time,” John says. “We worked hard, but we had to work smart at the time.” In order to work smart, John knew his practice needed to focus on the management and the business skills of running a company, something dentists are not taught in dental school. He asked Cathy to come in and help with his dental practice in Wynnewood, Okla., which resulted in a 35-percent increase in business the first year. “I applied all my management, psychology, educational and communications skills into the practice, and the practice thrived,” Cathy says. “Other dentists started asking me to come in and help with their practices, and I couldn’t turn them down.”

companies in dentistry. To date, Jameson Management has been invited into 2,000 practices, 27 countries and every state in the United States. “Our success is based on the success of our clients,” Cathy says. “People say we don’t teach practice management but life management.”


oday, the Jamesons’ son-in-law, Jess Webber, serves as president of Jameson Management, and their daughter, Carrie Jameson Webber, serves as director of marketing. Both Jess and Carrie are OSU graduates. Cathy continues to serve as CEO, and John is chairman of the board. Despite their success with Jameson Management, John and Cathy have managed to make their family a priority in their lives. Even when her kids were young, she says she engineered her life around them. “We honor our family first, and we have created a company culture that

where the family named the stairway in Traditions Hall. “Staying involved with OSU keeps us connected to the university,” John says. “Our roots are deep in OSU tradition and loyalty. It’s good to be able to give back.” John has also served on the OSU Alumni Association’s executive committee and remains active in the OSU Medical Cowboys. Cathy continues to serve on the College of Education Associates, Founding Council for Women for OSU and the OSU Foundation board of governors where she serves as a trustee. In addition, she is a part of the College of Education’s Dream Team, and feels privileged to be on Provost Sternberg’s External Advisory Council.

“Balance is hard, so I’m not going to tell you it’s easy. We work hard at balancing our lives and make a special effort to have time for family.” —  John Jameson


n 1990, Jameson Management became incorporated. The company offers a number of services, including training in business and personnel management, leadership and strategic development, and communication by providing individualized coaching for dentists, physicians and their teams. “I used what I knew about teaching students to teach professionals,” Cathy says. “The purpose is to help practitioners manage their organizations efficiently and effectively so that they can focus on what they do best, which is taking care of people.” “This is a real need for practitioners — to learn those systems of business they haven’t learned anywhere else,” John says. The company celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2010. Cathy says it is a huge accomplishment to have started out in a rural town in Oklahoma and to be considered one of the best management


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supports people’s personal lives as well as their professional growth,” Cathy says. The Jamesons say one way they keep their family first is by bringing their grandchildren to their ranch, which John says is a good source of sanity. Horseback riding is a family tradition. Gathering at the ranch is a good way to remember where they started. “Balance is hard, so I’m not going to tell you it’s easy,” John says. “We work hard at balancing our lives, and we make a special effort to have time for family.” Though extremely busy, the Jamesons continue to stay involved with OSU. Both are life members of the Alumni Association and supporters of Cowboy sports. Through the Jameson Family Foundation, which they started with their son, Dr. Brett Jameson, and his wife, Amy, who are both OSU graduates, they also contribute to The Ranchers Club and the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center,


he Jamesons credit their alma mater with the many achievements in their careers and personal lives. Cathy says the ability to collaborate with others plus the building of confidence and educational skills are among the most important things she learned at OSU, and she encourages current students to get involved on campus and to network. “My time at OSU is the true starting point of my success,” Cathy says. “I really do credit the success of the company to my background in education. I learned so much myself, and now I am able to pass on my experience and knowledge by teaching others through proven educational ­methods.” S t e p h an i e K . Tay l o r

Funding the Future

OSU Institute of Technology nursing student McKenzi Myers presents outgoing president Bob Klabenes with a large facsimile of a check that symbolizes the impact of donations given in his honor when combined with matching funds. The $150,000 total last November has increased since then.

Scholarship fund honors retiring president and his concern for students Broadening the opportunities for people of limited means to get a higher education has always been a primary concern for Bob Klabenes, the recently retired president of OSU Institute of Technology. To recognize his commitment, many industry partners, friends and employees of OSU Institute of Technology established the Bob Klabenes Scholarship Fund with $79,370 in gifts and commitments. It will have a total impact of $217,265 after matching funds from the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match. “This scholarship has been created to honor Dr. Bob for his leadership of this institution for 27 years,” says Steve Doede, chair of OSU Institute of Technology’s Automotive Division. “Not only has he been a visionary, he has also had the courage to carve out a role for OSUIT that makes it distinctive among two-year technical colleges worldwide.”

Klabenes, who was surprised and honored by the gift, says scholarships are vital to many students who need financial assistance to complete their education. “Funding scholarships is of utmost importance so we can keep the cost of a higher education as affordable as possible,” Klabenes says. Donors who wish to honor Klabenes through this scholarship can still contribute to the fund. As it grows over time, both from investment returns and donations, it will produce even more in annual student support for OSUIT students. “Any way you look at it, our gift will have at least two positive results,” Doede says. “First, this fully endowed scholarship will forever be available to help students attend OSUIT. And second, this is our way of honoring and appreciating Dr. Klabenes for all of his many contributions to the university, its students and employees.”

Matt Carey, executive vice president and chief information officer of The Home Depot, is a graduate of OSU Institute of Technology. “I am very happy to be involved in supporting the scholarship in honor of President Klabenes,” Carey says. “He’s meant a great deal to the town I grew up in, Okmulgee, and he’s been a great leader to the institution where I received my education.” Scholarships will be awarded beginning this fall. To qualify, students must have completed a minimum of 12 semester credit hours at OSUIT with a GPA of at least 2.4 and have documented financial need. Rex DaugheRty anD ShaRon Smith

For more information or to support this project, contact Ben Leslie at or 918-704-0054.


From Pete’s Hands... Straight to Your Legacy’s The OSU Alumni Association is happy to announce we can now send Legacy gifts and cards directly to the Legacy! If you would like for us to add your Legacy's address to his or her record, please contact us at 405.744.5368 or at, and we would be happy to make that change.

Need to register a legacy?

• Legacies ages 0-16 receive FREE gifts/cards for their birthday! • Invitations to special events: • Legacy Day at the Cowboy Corral • Legacy and Leadership Conference • Grandparent University To learn more about the Alumni Association’s Legacy Program or to register your legacy visit! *Some events are age specific 201 ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center Stillwater, OK 74078-7043 TEL 405.744.5368 • FAX 405.744.6722


Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match triples the impact of Mike and Kristen Gundy’s gift to OSU Boone and Madeleine Pickens with Kristen and Mike Gundy


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Few alumni have done as much to benefit OSU athletics as Mike Gundy. scholarship is one way we can say thank you to OSU for our education and underscore our belief that our players are athletes second and students first.” The Gundys’ donation helped OSU’s student-athlete scholarship endowment campaign surpass the $40 million mark toward a $115 million goal to endow all 229 athletic positions in 18 men’s and women’s sports. The studentathletic endowment program will benefit all 467 student-athletes. Over the past three years, OSU has moved into second place in the Big 12 in student-athletic endowed scholarships. “This is a generous gift from Coach Gundy and his wife, Kristen,” says OSU President Burns Hargis. “I am especially pleased with Coach Gundy’s emphasis on graduating his players. Coach is right when he says his players are students first. “Of course, we are pleased with the success we are experiencing with our football program under his leadership. “There is no stronger leadership than leading by example,” Hargis says. “We appreciate the example Mike and Kristen have set with their scholarship gift.” Pickens says he is always pleased to learn people have taken advantage of the matching opportunity. “I had no idea how successful the matching program would be at motivating thousands of OSU

PHOTO / OSU Media Relations


First Mike Gundy was a record-setting, four-year starting quarterback for the Cowboys from 1986 to ’89. Then he returned to OSU in 2005 to become head coach and lead the Cowboys to national prominence. Last season, he led OSU to a school-record 11 wins capped by a school-record fifth-straight bowl appearance, with a 36-10 win over the University of Arizona in the Alamo Bowl. Now Coach Gundy and his wife, Kristen, also an OSU graduate, continue to make a difference with their scholarship gift of $166,667 to endow the quarterback position on the OSU football team. The gift qualifies for a 2-to-1 match from the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program established by alumnus Boone Pickens. The match pushes the total impact to $500,000, which will annually produce $25,000 for tuition, fees, books and living expenses for OSU quarterbacks. “Kristen and I are pleased to support the Branding Success campaign for OSU,” Gundy says. “We received a wonderful education here, and today it’s an honor to coach at OSU and for our family to live in Stillwater. As I said the day I was appointed head coach, ‘This is my New York Yankees job.’ “Yes, athletics are indeed important to every major university, but academics are truly most important. This endowed

Mike Gundy set the Big Eight Conference records for passing and total offense as a four-year starter at quarterback for OSU in the late ’80s. He also guided OSU to wins in the 1987 Sun Bowl and the 1988 Holiday Bowl.

supporters to become involved the ambitious $500 million Branding Success scholarship goal,” he says. “I was especially pleased to learn of the Gundys’ gift to endow the OSU quarterback position. Mike and Kristen are real assets to OSU. Like me, they love this university and want to see it succeed at the highest level both academically and athletically.” Gundy says he’s confident OSU will surpass the billion dollar goal of the Branding Success campaign. “OSU’s future — academically and athletically — is as bright and promising as ever,” Gundy says. “Kristen and I want to thank Boone, Burns and Athletic Director Mike Holder for what they are doing every day to move our exceptional university forward.”

“This endowed scholarship is one way we can say thank you to OSU for our education.” — Mike Gundy


Just as Cassie Mitchell was about to start college, an autoimmune disease attacked her spinal cord, causing paralysis in her legs and weakness throughout her body. She persevered anyway, earning a chemical engineering degree from OSU and a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University’s School of Medicine. Mitchell doesn’t let additional paralysis, inadequate sports equipment or intractable diseases stop her. When she isn’t winning national handcycling championships or training for the 2012 Olympics, the young Georgia faculty researcher is creating computer models to zero in on promising treatments for ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Determination Defined

Photo by Phil Shockley


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Determination Defined For Cassie Mitchell ‘Life is engineering, and engineering is life’


Photo used by permission © KC Montgomery Photographics

fter her first race on a borrowed cycle last May, Cassie Mitchell realized she’d have to engineer her own if she wanted to continue. “I was literally duct taped to this bike because I couldn’t hang on,” says the 2004 chemical engineering alumna. “It wasn’t built for a quadriplegic. I knew I would have to come up with something else to ride.” Four months later, Mitchell won the 2010 Women’s H1 National Handcycling Championship, a division of the USA Cycling National Professional Championships, on Prototype 1, a three-wheeler she and a coworker designed. “You can’t just go out and buy one of these cycles,” says the amiable athlete whose design allows her to lean forward on a chest plate and pedal at hand-level since she can’t control her abdominal muscles or raise her arms. The 8-mile timed trial around Greenville, S.C., last September would have been easier if a gear shifter for all 30 gears had arrived prior to the race. “All those hills on just three gears! It took willpower! Mitchell wasn’t trying to win a national championship or worried about her time or placement. “It was just about me wanting to do it,” says Mitchell, who turns 30 on June 8. “I didn’t know at the time that no quad female had ever finished the race.” Being on the winners’ stand brought back memories of being an able-bodied Warner, Okla., high school athlete and winning four world championships in Western Equestrian speed events and two All-Around titles with her horse Misty Jet. She says Prototype 1 exemplifies a philosophy she adopted from OSU’s engineering faculty a decade ago: “Life is engineering, and engineering is life. So you have to be able to problemsolve as you go.”

By Janet Varnum

Devic’s causes painful muscle spasms and inflammation that damages the spinal cord and optic nerves, resulting in paralysis and weakness throughout the body as well as vision loss and blindness. The class valedictorian suddenly had to rethink her future, including a track scholarship to study pre-medicine in Missouri. As she recovered, she adjusted to permanent double vision, intermittent blurred vision, leg braces and a wheelchair. She asked her doctor if attending college would aggravate the disease. “When he said no, I thought, ‘I’m not putting my life on hold. I’m going to school.’ Until then Mitchell was leaning toward studying orthopedic surgery, although she was equally interested in engineering. “But the paralysis confirmed my decision to go the engineering route,” she says. “I didn’t know at that point if I would get better. In a medical career, I might not have the physical ability to do surgery or other procedures. But I knew I could do engineering despite my disability.” She talked to engineering recruiter Bob Hollrah and says something about OSU just clicked. Yes, OSU was relatively close to home. It offered one of the best engineering programs around. And as a Regents Distinguished Scholar, an OSU Valedictorian Scholar and a member of the President’s Leadership Council, all her expenses would be covered — a significant concern for someone with mounting medical bills and prescriptions. “Ron Beer was very helpful in figuring out all my scholarships business,” she says of the retired vice president of student affairs. “I had to wait one semester before I started college (continues on next page)

Life-altering Disease



hortly after high school graduation in 1999, an autoimmune disease called Devic’s neuromyelitis optica attacked Mitchell’s spinal cord. “I woke up one day and couldn’t move from my knees down,” she says. “On the MRI, it looked like a rat chewed up my spinal cord.”

Cassie Mitchell became the first quadriplegic female to win the women’s handcycling championship at the 2010 USA Cycling National Professional Championships in September. 49

“Without knowing it, Cassie taught me to be thankful for whatever situation I’m going through. She made me want to be a better person and more like her.”



“Cassie was in 401, and I was in 402,” says Templeton, a 2004 industrial engineering graduate and now project manager for Sam’s Club in Bentonville, Ark. because of my medical condition, Besides a mutual interest in and OSU held my scholarships engineering, they share a strong for me.” devotion to the Christian faith. But most of all, OSU felt right. — Kyla (Morgan) Templeton, ’04 industrial engineering “Cassie has a lot of focus on “OSU’s family atmosphere really God and on the task at hand,” mattered to me. Even though OSU is Templeton says. “No matter what the situation is, Cassie does much bigger than the small community I was from, I didn’t feel like everything with excellence, whether it’s her schoolwork or her I would be just another one in 25,000 coming through the door.” research or athletics. And she does it with joy and happiness.” At OSU, Mitchell also discovered that a chemical engineerDespite visual and physical imparities, Mitchell excelled ing degree could lead to a career in medical research through the in chemical engineering, one of the most demanding majors in emerging field of biomedical engineering. regard to the amount of homework and required reading of scien“That’s something interesting about chemical engineering,” tific texts full of mathematical and chemical equations. she says. “It’s never been just about the material or doing the job Templeton says she has learned a lot from Mitchell. “Without you’re hired to do as a chemical engineer. It’s about taking the knowing it, Cassie taught me to material further to help other people.” be thankful for whatever situation I’m going through,” Logistics of Living Templeton says. “She made me want to be a better person and hile most freshmen were adjusting to college classes, more like her.” dorm life and living away from home for the first Templeton remembers time, so was Mitchell, but her learning curve also when the disease flared up in included text-enlarging equipment and maneuvering campus in a February 2002, causing paralywheelchair. Kyla (Morgan) Templeton, sis in Mitchell’s upper legs, and “OSU was like a fresh start for me because no one knew me left, and Cassie Mitchell met again near the end of 2002 any differently from before I was in the wheelchair,” she says. as freshmen on Drummond’s when paralysis reached her “Back home, people would stare because they remembered me as engineering floor. upper abdomen. a very athletic person who rode horses and ran track. They didn’t “Cassie was in a lot of pain,” Templeton says. “She couldn’t know what to say. move. She couldn’t see. At that time, they thought it was multiple “My freshman year, I came to a decision point. Do I just go sclerosis. There was a lot of confusion around her illness. to class and do my thing, or do I interact with people? I decided “Even then, Cassie stayed on top of her classes,” she says, I’m going to create my boundaries. I’m going to go out and see even faxing homework to her professors from the hospital when how it goes.” she was able. She joined the Society of Women Engineers, “With Cassie as an example,” Templeton jokes, “there was tutored engineering students as a Student Determination no excuse to not do your homework.” Academic Counselor and played on OSU’s


Wheelchair Basketball team, making the allconference team in both 2003 and 2004 and was named an all-American in 2004. In the collegiate chapter of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, she served as president, vice president and secretary and was liaison to the executive committee all four years. “I think coming to OSU was the best thing that could have happened, not just for my education, but also socially and just moving on in life.” Mitchell met one of her best friends, Kyla (Morgan) Templeton, when both were freshmen living on Drummond’s engineering floor.


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OSU Success


egents Professor Lionel Raff says Mitchell’s academic excellence equals any of the world-class students he’s taught during his career as a chemistry professor, but no one comes close to matching her determination to excel. “Of all the students I have known in my 47 years on the faculty, I rank Ms. Mitchell as number one,” he says. “They simply don’t come any better.” Mitchell first stood out among the 240 students in his intro to chemistry class when she insisted on taking an exam even though a deadly spinal pump malfunction caused her to miss three weeks of school. (continues on page 52)



As a member of the Shepherd Smash rugby team sponsored by the Shepherd Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Rehabilitation Hospital in Atlanta, Ga. , Cassie Mitchell says taking a fall (below) is fairly common in this fullcontact sport. The Shepherd Smash won the third-place trophy at the 2011 national quad rugby championship in Birmingham, Ala.

Photo Photo // Phil Phil Shockley Shockley


“Of all the students I have known in my 47 years on the faculty, I rank Ms. Mitchell as number one. They simply don’t come any better.” — Lionel Raff, chemistry professor

“My exams are extremely hard,” says Raff, who adheres to an absolute grading scale each semester. The average test grade in his class is 50. “I thought she would fail it.” Knowing Mitchell didn’t have sufficient time to prepare, he offered to give her an incomplete grade so she could take the course the following semester. Mitchell’s response: ‘Did I ask you for any special consideration?” “To say I was surprised is an understatement,” Raff says. “But I need not have worried.” Mitchell scored the second-highest grade on the exam. Mitchell laughs now remembering she was scared and trembling before the professor she greatly admired while asserting her right to take a test no one expected her to pass. “He never treated me differently than the other students,” she says. “He didn’t pity me or feel sorry for me. I was like one of the others, and I appreciated that.” Raff says he never asked her why she was willing to risk her academic standing over the precarious situation. “She didn’t have to explain,” he says. “After taking the test, it was obvious she was capable and didn’t need any help. She’s an outstanding scholar, and she was just determined she could do it.” Mitchell says her research mentor, chemical engineering professor Randy Lewis, was the first to welcome her into the lab at OSU. “I was in a wheelchair, and he never questioned it. He never even blinked at it,” she says. Later, while applying to some of the nation’s top graduate schools, Mitchell discovered not all environments are so friendly. She says the connection between chemical engineering and the medical field clicked when Determination she observed graduate students of Lewis and Defined Sundar V. Madihally using chemical engineering principles to regenerate biological tissue and other medically related experiments. “That showed me I could combine my love of engineering and my desire to apply it to medical research to help people. I was amazed and inspired.” When Mitchell was awarded a Wentz research scholarship, Lewis suggested she create a project to interest young people in engineering. That led to her award-winning fluidized popcorn popper and becoming a founding member of ChemKidz, a student organization dedicated to teaching chemical engineering principles to fifth-graders. Mitchell continued to excel, winning a 2003 Goldwater Scholarship for the nation’s top engineering undergraduates; and in 2004, she was named a USA Today First Team Academic


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All-American and an American Institute of Chemical Engineers National Scholar. In graduate school, she was awarded two National Science Foundation fellowships that paid for all five years of her doctoral work, and she also won awards from the National Neurotrauma Society and the Society of Neuroscience. In 2010, she won the Best Presentation Award at the National Motoneuron Society International Conference in Paris, France. “I don’t know where she gets her strength to do it sometimes,” Templeton says. “Cassie has such drive to achieve and she does things that look impossible. I’m totally not surprised to see her win awards and accolades because of the hard work I’ve seen her do.” Lewis, who is now a professor and department chair in Brigham Young University’s Department of Chemical Engineering, says Mitchell’s positive, upbeat attitude is inspirational. “I never once heard her complain. She was an outstanding student, but she wasn’t learning it just to get an A. She had a desire to learn the material and apply it to real problems. “Cassie is one who can make a change for good for mankind,” Lewis says. “She’ll make a difference in the lives of people.”

Ground-breaking Research


n May 2009, Mitchell received her Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from both Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University. Now she’s a faculty researcher in the universities’ joint Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering. The atmosphere of openness toward people with disabilities impressed her during her first visit in 2004 and continues today. “Much like OSU, they never really saw the wheelchair,” she says. “They just saw me.” For her doctoral research, Mitchell created computer models that analyze biomedical data from hundreds of research programs, simulate the results and predict treatment outcomes. “It’s like weather forecasting,” says Mitchell. “I use computer modeling and data analysis to predict responses. I enjoy translating the language of biology — words — into the language of math — numbers.” Her first four computer models focused on simple physiological neural systems and the fifth on secondary spinal cord injuries. “Today, I’m taking the methods I created as a graduate student and applying them to ALS,” says Mitchell, who collaborates with neurologists at Emory’s world-class ALS research center. She was awarded a National Institutes of Health grant and hopes to eventually tackle multiple intractable diseases. “Right now, ALS is a disease where there’s not a lot of hope,” she says. “It’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack. ALS is in need of direction, and that’s what this computer simulation is all about, providing direction toward treatments that look the most

“Thirty percent of people with Devic’s die within three to five years. It’s been 11 years since my first attack. Maybe that’s why I want to give back to the medical field. A lot of research has gone into keeping me alive this long.” — Cassie Mitchell

promising universally. It’s a good fit. I think I can have a very positive impact on ALS patients with the methodologies I’ve created. “Experimental and clinical research can take years and years and years. But if you can model it on the computer, you can get results faster. It’s all about ­expedience so we can get to the right answers quicker.” Expedience in medical research is something Mitchell takes to heart. “Thirty percent of people with Devic’s die within three to five years,” Mitchell says. “It’s been 11 years since my first attack. “Maybe that’s why I want to give back to the medical field. I’ve had a lot of people helping me, and a lot of research has gone into keeping me alive this long.”

On a Roll



odeling is integral to biomedical research, but Mitchell’s work supersedes conventional techniques. “Real advances in science and engineering come from people who bring together ideas from different areas,” says OSU chemical engineering Professor Rob Whiteley, whom Mitchell credits with teaching her the “tools” that apply to engineering problem solving as much as to daily life. “Cassie’s pioneering research was successful because of her ability to combine the state of the art in both modeling and neurophysiological medicine,” Whiteley says. “She combined her world-class education from OSU, Georgia Tech and Emory

University with her incredible talent and motivation. That’s a recipe for success at an unprecedented level. “Her work is truly sophisticated and represents a major step forward in her field. I’m very proud that an OSU chemical engineer is leading the way!” Although Mitchell lost dexterity in her hands and wrists in 2006 during the latest recurrence of her disease, she remains competitive in handcycling and rugby and is a frequent contender at regional and national tournaments. Whiteley says Mitchell has a “Michael Jordan quality” that transcends talent and ability to find a will to win in any situation. And she does it without any sense of ego. “I never realized the true capacity of the human spirit until I met Cassie,” he says. Mitchell says she appreciates athletic competition because it brings out the best in herself and others. “It teaches us to encourage and motivate each other. It provides a great model of what we should do in life. “Whatever I’m doing, I’m doing for others,” she says. “Whether it’s using my engineering skills, mentoring patients at Shepherd Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Rehabilitation Hospital in Atlanta, encouraging a stranger dealing with cancer, or riding a bike and training for the 2012 Olympics. I think that kind of ‘looking outward’ attitude has really allowed me to not get sad or upset in whatever circumstance comes along or whatever life deals me.” Mitchell says her faith enables her to persevere despite her health problems, and her engineering problem-solving tools equip her to help others. “I think that also comes back to OSU where people love their neighbors and treat each other like family,” she says. “That’s not just me commercializing. It’s true. “OSU’s chemical engineering program goes above and beyond to relate engineering problemsolving principles to all life skills,” she says. “Engineering is something special at OSU.”

Cassie Mitchell’s preparation for the 2012 Olympics includes training camp at the U.S. Olympics Training Center in Birmingham, Ala.


Alumni Hall of Fame A champion, a pioneer, a visionary and an explorer are the words that describe four new members of the OSU Alumni Hall of Fame.

The OSU Alumni Association inducted Gene Batchelder, John A. Clerico, Lew Meibergen and Michele Smith during a ceremony Feb. 18, 2011, at the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center. Induction into the OSU Alumni Hall of Fame is the highest honor bestowed by the OSU Alumni Association. It recognizes outstanding lifetime achievement in society and professional life.

The OSU Alumni Association would like to thank the following sponsors of the OSU Alumni Hall of Fame: P r e s e n t i n g

S p o n s o r s

ConocoPhillips & the OSU Foundation L o y a l

a n d

T r u e

S p o n s o r s

The Batchelder Family & Johnston Enterprises 55

Gene Batchelder

A Visionary 56

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of Houston, Texas, graduated from OSU in 1969 with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He is currently senior vice president and chief administrative officer for ConocoPhillips in Houston. He serves on both the company’s management committee and strategy committee. While at OSU, Batchelder was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. After graduating from OSU and serving in the U.S. Army, Batchelder went to work for Ford Motor Company. He joined Phillips Petroleum Company in 1972 and has held numerous positions throughout his almost 40-year career at ConocoPhillips, including president of Phillips Driscopipe Inc., senior vice president and chief financial officer of GPM Gas Corporation and chief information officer. His past professional affiliations include membership in the American Institute of Certified Professional Accountants and the Oklahoma Society of Certified Professional Accountants. He also served on the board of directors and executive committee of the Plastics Pipe Institute. He has attended executive programs at Duke University and Harvard Business School and published articles on information technology management in various publications, including Harvard Business Review. Batchelder also serves or has served on numerous civic, philanthropic and corporate boards. A past national president of the OSU Alumni Association board of directors, Batchelder also served as president of the Alumni Association’s Washington County Chapter. He currently serves as a trustee for the OSU Foundation, is a life member of the OSU Alumni Association, a member of the College of Business Associates and member of the OSU POSSE. Batchelder was recognized as an OSU School of Accounting Distinguished Alumnus and inducted into the OSU College of Business Hall of Fame in 2002 and was named an OSU Distinguished Alumnus in 2005. Batchelder and his wife, Lori, reside in Houston and have a ranch near Anderson, Texas. Between them, they have six children and 13 grandchildren.


John A. Clerico

of Tulsa, Okla., graduated from OSU in 1963 with a bachelor’s degree in general business. He is currently chairman and owner of ChartMark Investments Inc., an independent advisory firm that manages equity funds for individuals and small pension funds, based in Tulsa. He co-founded the firm in 2000, and, in addition to his role as chairman, he serves as the registered financial adviser, where he leads the everyday portfolio management and strategic direction of the firm. While a student at OSU, Clerico was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity. He completed his postgraduate studies at the University of Missouri and University of Colorado. Clerico went on to work as the financial officer for Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Company from 1965 to 1983. He then became the treasurer and chief financial officer for Union Carbide Corp. Finally, before co-founding ChartMark, Clerico worked for Praxair Inc., where he held several positions, including executive vice president, chief financial officer and director. He currently serves on the board of directors of several companies, including Community Health Systems Inc., which operates more than 70 hospitals in more than 20 states; Educational Development Corporation, the exclusive U.S. distributor of a line of children’s books produced by the U.K.’s Usborne Publishing Limited; Global Industries Ltd.; and Anyware Mobile Solutions. He also raises funds for the National Sclerosis Society and is a member of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra Virtuoso. Clerico serves on the OSU Foundation board of governors, OSU Foundation board of trustees and the OSU Athletic Foundation. As vice chairman of the OSU Foundation board of trustees, he also chairs the audit and budget committee and serves on all other sub-committees, including the executive committee. In 2005, Clerico gave the single largest donation ever made to the Edmon Low Library to renovate the South Plaza in honor of his late wife, Beverly, an OSU alumna. He is a member of the OSU Alumni Association. Clerico and his wife, Cheryl, reside in Tulsa.

An Explorer

Hall of Fam 57

Lew Meibergen

A Pioneer 58

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of Enid, Okla., graduated from Oklahoma A&M in 1953 with a bachelor’s degree in animal science. He is chairman of the board and president of Johnston Enterprises Incorporated in Enid, which is the sole owner of W.B. Johnston Grain Company, Johnston’s Seed Company and Johnston’s Port 33. As a student, Meibergen was active in Block and Bridle, Beta Theta Pi fraternity and the Livestock Judging Team. He later served two years with the U.S. Army in Europe. From 1955 to 1960, Meibergen managed W.B. Johnston Grain, Feed and Seed Company in Fairview, Okla., and then served as the Oklahoma Commissioner of Agriculture for six years. In 1966, Meibergen began 10 years in the banking industry, first as vice president of Liberty National Bank and Trust Co. and later as senior vice president and president of First National Bank of Enid. In 1976, he purchased Johnston Enterprises from his family. As the largest independent grain company in Oklahoma, the company has grain operations consisting of 22 elevators in Oklahoma and Texas. Johnston Seed Company operates primarily in Oklahoma and works closely with OSU to develop turf grasses. The company’s new $10 million facility in Shattuck, Okla., supplies mill-ready wheat to California and Mexico. Johnston’s Port 33 operates ports in Oklahoma, Louisiana and West Virginia. Meibergen served on the OSU board of regents from 1963 to 1966 and is a member of the OSU Dean of Agriculture’s advisory board. He has received OSU’s Distinguished Agriculture Alumni Award and the Graduate of Distinction Award from the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. In 2004, he was honored as an OSU Distinguished Alumni. Meibergen’s daughter, Mary Henneke, and son, J.L. “Butch” Meibergen, attended OSU, as did five grandchildren.


Michele Smith

graduated from OSU in 1990 with a bachelor’s degree in health and wellness. As a pitcher for the Cowgirls softball team, she set eight OSU records and was a three-time All-Big Eight selection, a twotime All-Big Eight Academic selection and a two-time All-American. She lives in St. Petersburg, Fla., where she has taken up training for triathlons and longdistance biking. After graduating from OSU, Smith won two U.S. Olympic Softball gold medals, three World Championships and two Pan American Games. She followed up her U.S. National Team success with a record-setting eight championships during her unprecedented 16-year career in the Japan Professional Softball League. She now serves as a softball commentator for ESPN and a worldwide humanitarian representative for Musco Lighting. Through her business, Michele Smith Fastpitch, Smith has produced a series of softball educational DVDs and books. She also devotes much of her time to conducting pitching and hitting clinics throughout the U.S. and abroad, and she presents motivational speeches on women in leadership, team building and sports training. She serves as a board member for the nonprofit Batters Up USA, which supplies equipment to communities wanting to establish recreational baseball and softball youth programs, and for Athletes for Hearts, a non-profit organization that works to provide financial assistance for families of children with heart disease. She is also a dedicated health and fitness advocate for kids and adults. Smith has been inducted into the Amateur Softball Association Hall of Fame, the Oklahoma and New Jersey Sports Halls of Fame and is a member of the OSU Alumni Association.

A Champion

Hall of Fam 59

Fig. A

Lucky, Blessed and Fortunate Immigrant shows her appreciation to her ‘adopted’ U.S. alma mater 60

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or Marta White, becoming an American is something she truly cherishes. White was born and raised in the small town of Strazske in eastern Czechoslovakia. In 1968, not long after she completed her chemical technology degree at the Industrial School for Chemistry, Russian troops invaded her country in efforts to halt political reforms. It is an event White will never forget. “I still remember hearing the rumble when the Russian tanks invaded our city in August of 1968,” White says. “We didn’t know what was going on. We turned on the radio and heard that Russia had invaded Czechoslovakia. Our way of life changed dramatically.” White was one of almost 80,000 people who left Czechoslovakia after the invasion, but she was the only member of her family to leave. Her parents are now deceased, but she stays in contact with her two sisters and one brother who still live in Slovakia. In December 1968, White was approved for a three-month vacation to visit her aunt in Queens, N.Y. Unable to speak any English, White flew into New York City with only $5. Shortly afterward, she applied for and was granted political asylum and a green card. She took a job as a chemist for Elizabeth Arden, a beauty, cosmetics and makeup company. In 1971, Eli Lilly, a pharmaceutical company in Indianapolis, purchased Elizabeth Arden and moved the research center there. White climbed the ladder at Elizabeth Arden and when Lilly sold Arden, she was in charge of lipstick formulation and production. During her career with Elizabeth Arden she had the opportunity to interact with many special people and created a red lipstick for Ann Landers, the famous advice columnist. White describes 1978 as “one of the best years in my life” because that February, with the help of Sen. Dick Lugar, she became a U.S. citizen. Lilly divested Elizabeth Arden on April 1, 1987. Bob Williams, Lilly vice president, encouraged White and gave her the opportunity for a new career. She studied library sciences at Indiana University and became the senior librarian for Eli Lilly Research Labs in Greenfield, Ind.

“I am a doer, and I am independent,” White says. “Having a degree in chemistry I knew I could get a job in the United States and do a good job. I learned from my aunt that if you work hard you can do and be whatever you want. That was my goal: to do my best and apply myself the best I could.” White met her husband, Dennis, while working in Greenfield. Dennis, a 1964 OSU animal science graduate, worked for Eli Lilly’s animal health division, Elanco, in animal product development and technical service. He also holds a master’s degree from OSU and a doctorate from Texas A&M. They married in 1990 — ­ “another best year in my life,” Marta adds — and both took an early retirement and moved to Dennis’ hometown of Ninnekah, Okla., in 1999. Because of Dennis’ passion for the Cowboys, Marta has adopted OSU as her alma mater in the United States. “I bleed orange,” Marta says. “I am very supportive of Dennis and whatever he does. Since I can’t give to my school back home, I want to give here. It has become my school.”

Marta White, center, poses with her husband, Dennis, and daughter, Eleni Handrinos, at an OSU football game. Far left, Marta White and Valeria Cuhova perform an experiment at the Industrial School for Chemistry in Humenne, Czechoslovakia, in the late 1960s.

Fig. C

But Marta’s passion for giving reaches far beyond the OSU campus. Every year she knits scarves and bakes cakes for the Children’s Center in Bethany, Okla. She also bakes for the senior center in Ninnekah and numerous other charity events in Grady County as well as for Mark Harmon charity events. She is also a docent for the National Cowboy and

“I still remember hearing the rumble when the Russian tanks invaded our city in August of 1968.” For more than a decade, the Whites have been staunch supporters in multiple facets at OSU. They are season ticket holders for basketball and football along with being donors for the first endowed chair in the Animal Science Department. Dennis serves on the board of trustees of the OSU Foundation and also on the advisory board for the Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. Most recently the couple gave a $50,000 scholarship to the Animal Science Department as part of the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program.

Western Heritage Museum. In 2008, she was recognized as the “Diamond Hat of the Year” for her efforts to raise money for the 4-H and FFA youth of Oklahoma. Her incessant determination and contagious passion for giving will not only continue to impact OSU but also those lives she has touched in Ninnekah. “Somehow I knew my life would end up like this,” she says. “I knew I would immigrate and I knew I would do well in the United States. I’ve been lucky, blessed and fortunate.”



Kat i e A nn R o b i ns o n 400


What’s So


Great …

Oklahoma State?

Reflections of a Newbie Anyone who spends any serious time at Oklahoma State University comes to realize that there is something special, even unique about the place. They may find themselves grappling, as I once did, with what is at the heart of this specialness. That was me, just a few years ago. Welcome to OSU! In April 2009, I came to Oklahoma State to give a colloquium. I had visited hundreds of college and university campuses — in all 50 states and on five continents — and expected my trip to OSU to be more or less like those, memorable for a day or two and then quickly forgotten. That didn’t happen. Upon my return from OSU, I told my wife, Karin, how enthusiastic I was about this unique campus, which before my trip had been indistinguishable in my mind from other state-school campuses. I said if a provost job ever opened at OSU, I would quickly apply for it — and I did. On my 2009 visit, five things particularly impressed me.


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By Robert J. Sternberg

The first thing that caught my attention was the president, Burns Hargis. Before I was to give my colloquium, I was placed in a small room where time had been set aside to meet faculty. One of the visitors was an impressive-looking gentleman — the only visitor dressed in a suit. I asked him what subject he taught. He told me he was the president of the university. I was stunned. In many colloquium trips, no university president had ever come to meet with me. And it was not merely a courtesy visit. We spent perhaps a half-hour discussing a topic dear to my heart — leadership — and how universities could serve as vehicles to foster positive ethical leadership not only on campus but in students’ future lives. Here, I saw, is a president who is a leader and a visionary, not just an administrator. The second thing that impressed me was the people I met at Oklahoma State. I had come to speak about creativity and its role in leadership, scarcely a topic that tends to fill auditoriums at most universities. Not only was the attendance gratifying, but people seemed fully to engage with what, in academic circles, is viewed as something of an orphan topic. No field, including my own of psychology, quite wants to make the field of creativity its own. At OSU I found many people excited about the topic. I even discovered OSU

OSU Provost

had a whole initiative devoted to creativity and that the topic was of especial interest to its president. Any colloquium speaker, of course, is delighted when his or her audience is excited about the topic of the talk. Sure I was flattered! But what impressed me even more were the warmth and friendliness of the people. I have met many engaging people before, but not like at OSU. I found on a short trip to OSU that people just seemed to be unable to do enough to try to make my visit a pleasant and rewarding one. Since coming to OSU, Karin and I have been fascinated and even captivated by the sincere caring and giving spirit of the people. When Karin had some pregnancy-related issues, we were amazed by how quickly people offered to help, even to the point of one highlevel administrator’s offer to spend some unused vacation-time with Karin to help her through a difficult period. President Hargis called long-distance to ask Karin how she was doing five minutes after the end of a day-long medical examination. And people kept asking how they could help us to adjust to our new surroundings in Oklahoma. Scarcely a day goes by that Karin and I do not comment on how amazingly welcoming people have been since our arrival at OSU. The third thing that impressed me was the sheer beauty of the campus. Campus planners over the years obviously had (continues on page 64)

ILLUSTRATION / Nalee Thao, graphic design senior


the charm of the towns of yesteryear and yet preserve the modern conveniences without enduring the hassles of big-city traffic, crime and pollution. Those people can come to Stillwater to enjoy this kind of environment without the strangeness of an artificially-created environment. Perhaps the thing that impressed me most was the spirit of the place — the pride and affection I saw in the various constituencies that were directed toward their university. It was not until I would come to OSU to work that I would better understand this pride. It is to the source of this pride that I turn next.

The Road Less Traveled

ILLUSTRATION / Luke Forwoodson, graphic design junior

taken great care to ensure the neo-Georgian architectural beauty of the campus and the harmony and unity of its buildings and courtyards were considered as an integrated whole. Not all the interiors were picture-perfect. I saw that OSU, like every campus, had its share of deferred maintenance. But people made their very best efforts to render their surroundings cheerful and pleasant. The fourth thing that impressed me was the town of Stillwater. Having come


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from the East Coast, I wondered whether this was a city that time had forgotten. Stillwater has many of the modern conveniences of living in a city, but still possesses the charm and grace of small cities I remembered from when I grew up in the 1950s. Some might view this as a throwback, but then, perhaps not. There are couples who pay a huge premium to live in Celebration, Fla., a town created (or perhaps contrived) by Disney for those who want to re-create

At OSU football games, one encounters a sea of orange. What motivates people to wear orange at athletic events, at work on Fridays and at diverse OSU celebrations? What is the source of this outpouring of pride? I think it is OSU’s adherence to the original vision of the land-grant university, brought into a modern form. What makes a modern land-grant university great is not only its traditional contribution to the agricultural development of the state, but also its focus on changing the state, the nation and the world in a positive, meaningful and enduring way. We want to develop thinkers who are creative, analytical, practical and wise, not merely students who have huge knowledge bases that they do not know how to use to improve the world. Oklahoma State seeks fully to embrace this mission with the goal of becoming one of the most distinguished land-grant institutions in the country through its teaching, research and outreach. But, one might say, there are many other land-grant institutions. What makes OSU special? Here, in a way, I am at an advantage as a newbie, because I bring the external perspective of someone who, relatively recently, spent 35 years in teaching, research and administration in private universities on the coasts and also visited many land-grant institutions in the course of my work.

Oklahoma State under President Hargis clearly has opted to stay true to its original ideals and to take the road less traveled. We at OSU embrace creativity in our students rather than view it as suspect. Creativity is not an inborn genetic trait — it is an attitude toward life. Creativity is about defying the crowd — about taking the road less traveled — to generate ideas and create products that are both novel and useful. Such an attitude scares off many teachers and administrators in other universities. In contrast, here at OSU, creativity is not some kind of add-on to everything else going on. It is an integral part of the university and its mission. Indeed, OSU was a major sponsor of the Creativity World Forum held in Oklahoma City in November 2010.

The problem is that trying to fit landgrant universities into these ratings is like trying to fit a round peg into a square hole. The round peg just doesn’t fit. So land-grant institutions need to choose either to be true to their original land-grant mission or to try to play the game of the elite universities that top the magazines’ lists. Of course, there are many intermediate positions. But at some point, a university must find its identity and move forward with it. Many land-grant institutions have taken the road more traveled. Forgetting or at least partially setting aside their land-grant missions of access and service, they have sought to reject as many applicants as possible because higher selectivity increases their national ratings as calculated by magazines.

In teaching and instruction, some of our competitors have pursued narrow paths of preparing overly-specialized, narrowly focused students. And in research, these universities have cared more about the prestige of the journals in which their faculty publish than they have about the service their research renders, whether to the academic community or to the world. In Great Britain, things have gotten so bad that the national government rates universities and allocates resources on the basis of narrow criteria of scholarly excellence that may or may not apply to particular universities. The risk in the United States is that land-grant institutions will focus laser-like on a goal of improving ratings at the expense of fulfilling their chartered mission.

“Universities, like all other organizations, must move forward or stagnate. Creativity is a dynamic process of becoming, not a static state to which one arrives and then stands still.” When OSU admits students, we care about markers like ACT scores and grades, Creativity is in jeopardy today in but we care more about admitting and then higher education because of the tremeneducating students who will become the dous pressure on colleges and universities active citizens and leaders of tomorrow. We to fit a common mold, which, embarask applicants about leadership, and in the rassingly, was created not by visionary future, we may ask them questions specifieducational leaders but instead by magacally designed to elicit creative thinking. zines such as U.S. News & World Report, In some of my previous work in which are primarily interested in selling as college admissions, for example, my many copies as possible. It is understandcolleagues and I have asked students to able that a magazine wants to preserve its write creative stories with titles such as balance sheet. Magazines are in business “The End of MTV” or “Confessions of a to make money as well as to report news. Middle-School Bully”; or to draw pictures But the result has been a scrambling of new products or of advertisements by many universities, including landfor these products; or to create YouTube grant institutions, to fit into a single mold videos that they post for the admissions created by a magazine instead of by their office to view; or to imagine what the own ideals. These universities may or may world would be like if some event in not admit to this scrambling, but their history had come out differently, such unwillingness to acknowledge the truth as the Allies losing rather than winning does not change the facts of their behavior. World War II.

Perils Along the Road

Continue Moving Forward It is important that OSU, in fulfilling its land-grant missions, not only admit for creativity, but also teach in ways that develop creative skills, inviting students to create, invent, explore, imagine and suppose. We can develop the creative attitude in students by encouraging them to think in new and unconventional, but also useful, ways. In my scholarly work, I have proposed a theory of “successful intelligence” in which individuals are successfully intelligent to the extent they accurately ascertain their strengths and weaknesses, and then capitalize on their strengths and correct or compensate for their weaknesses. The theory applies to institutions as well as to individuals. According to this theory, then, an institution is “successfully intelligent” to the extent it best leverages its assets. (continues on next page)


“Oklahoma State is in the midst of a transformational process. It has been true to its land-grant mission, but no matter how successful a university is, it cannot afford to become complacent.” Oklahoma State is in the midst of a transformational process to achieve such a goal. It has been true to its land-grant mission, but no matter how successful a university is, it cannot afford to become complacent. OSU retains the land-grant institution’s focus on producing active-citizen leaders who will make a positive, meaningful and enduring difference locally and globally. And it tries constantly to improve itself so that it can optimally fulfill its mission. In terms of a theory I have proposed of organizational modifiability, OSU is a “diamond in the rough” because it wants to change, is willing to acknowledge change and believes itself capable of the change it needs. Universities, like all other organizations, must move forward or stagnate. Creativity is a dynamic process of becoming, not a static state to which one arrives and then stands still. The direction of OSU represents a choice on the part of the president, in particular, but also on the part of the institution, in general.

Oklahoma State could focus narrowly on ratings placed on unidimensional scales of dubious value — scales that may capture some of the greatness of other institutions but that certainly fail to capture the greatness of this one. It could seek to become and advertise itself as the institution that has, say, the students with the highest standardized-test scores in the state. But that is a mission for others. At Oklahoma State, the overriding emphasis is on leadership value-added rather than on narrowly-defined academic entry value. We have, at OSU, leadershipdevelopment programs in every college and school, as well as leadership programs that cross-cut all the colleges. At present, we are hoping to obtain foundation funding for a university-wide Center for Ethical Leadership.

Beyond the Road Less Traveled As a land-grant institution, we need to develop in our students not only creativity but also wisdom — the use of one’s

knowledge and skills for a common good. At the core of wisdom are positive ethical values. In an era of “No Child Left Behind” and standardized tests conducting international comparisons, many schools have shifted their attention from focusing on the whole individual to focusing just on narrow academics. But the future leaders we develop at OSU will need to be wise as well as smart if we wish to avoid the scandals that have plagued our country — scandals often initiated by people who went to schools with great reputations but who ended up being smart but not wise. They used their abilities not to create a better world but, rather, for self-aggrandizement. Oklahoma State can soar to become one of the top land-grant institutions in the country, but only by remaining true to its core values of academic excellence in teaching, research and outreach. It needs to educate students who will not only become smart, but who will use their intellect and wisdom to make Oklahoma, the United States and the world a better place to live.

photo / gary lawson

Before joining OSU as provost in August 2010, Robert J. Sternberg spent five years as dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts University and before that 30 years at Yale University in various positions, including the IBM Professor of Psychology and Education, professor of management, and director of the Center for the Psychology of Abilities, Competencies and Expertise. Sternberg received his bachelor’s degree summa cum laude from Yale University and his Ph.D. from Stanford University, both in psychology. He also has 11 honorary doctorates. In 2003 he served as president of the American Psychological Association. He is president of the International Association for Cognitive Education and Psychology and president-elect of the Federation of Associations of Behavioral and Brain Sciences. He is an honorary professor at the University of Heidelberg in Germany.

Robert J. Sternberg 66

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what kind of a legacy will you leave?

We all have a desire for significance. For many

A bequest is a gift made through your will or

of us, significance comes through creating a

trust. There are several ways to make a bequest:

legacy during our lives – something for which

• Specific dollar amount

we will be remembered in the future. A bequest

• Percentage of your estate

is perhaps the easiest and most tangible way to leave a lasting legacy to the people and charitable organizations that mean the most to us.

• Specific asset • Residue of your estate

For more on how to create a lasting legacy through a bequest or information to share with your financial planner, please contact us or visit our website at We look forward to helping you!

OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY FOUNDATION 400 South Monroe / Stillwater, OK 74074 Ph. 800.622.4678 / Fax 405.385.5102 /

How the West was drawn Real life inspires this cowboy artist. By Melissa Oxford

photo / Michael Schumacher Amarillo Globe-News


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or some, “The West” means rugged cowboys with Stetsons and handlebar mustaches, spaghetti westerns, no-good outlaws, American Indian tribes, and wide-open spaces with no fences in sight, among other often romanticized images. For artist Chance Hays, however, the West means something more personal.


“To be out in the West — it’s kind of a religious thing for me,” says Hays, who graduated from OSU in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts. “I’m a real big nature guy,” he says. “People ask all the time where I get my ideas. I say, ‘Well, I get them from just being out in the elements, being out among everything in the West.’” Hays is becoming known for his paintings, which often depict cowboys, horses and other western scenes. Many of the sketches he draws while out in nature eventually turn into large-scale pieces. It’s how he shows his love and brings the West to the public, he says. But Hays doesn’t just paint cowboys. He is one. The professional roper started winning rodeo buckles in middle school in Rolla, Kan. When he wasn’t winning buckles, he won art contests and even wrote and illustrated a published children’s book, Dragonfly, at an early age. “I always loved to draw,” Hays says. “I was like any other kid.” Later his family moved to Oklahoma, where he graduated from Bristow High School and received a rodeo scholarship to Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell. Hays’ father also attended the university and competed in rodeo there, an opportunity Hays wanted to experience. Hays studied art in the panhandle for two years before OSU recruited him for both of his talents. Chris Ramsay, professor and head of OSU’s art department, says it’s incredibly rare to find a true cowboy like Hays in the art department. “Mr. Hays is a colorful character and fully lives out the role of the enchanting cowboy-artist well,” he says. Rodeo and art are “completely different worlds,” Hays says. “When I say I’m openminded, I mean that.” OSU Rodeo Team Adviser Cathryn Christensen says Hays was part of a group of students who helped change the course of the rodeo team for the better several years ago. “He is one of the most dedicated, hardworking people I have ever met,” Christensen says. “He treats rodeo like a career.” (continues on next page)

Dragging Pen


Cowboy Roping


Trying to Help


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That’s not to say his work is better than anyone else’s, he says. Hays says he respects all artists and remains open-minded about other forms of art. His experiences working with metal and glass sculpture at OSU are particularly memorable and influential. “All those things I’ve done have made me who I am today,” he says. “I’ve learned that other artists are just as passionate about what they do as I am about what I do. In the end, you have to be honest with yourself, and you have to do art for yourself.” Hays has worked in most twodimensional media, but his latest pieces are watercolor and pen and pencil. He usually works on two to three pieces at time, going back and forth between or among them, and sells most of his art through word-of-mouth, galleries, in-person or online. “The economy has affected business a little bit, but it hasn’t really hindered me,” he says. He says his mother, an art teacher, and his father, a cowboy who also worked in oil and natural gas, were always supportive, especially during the difficult times. Chance Hays competes on one of his professional roping “They would say, ‘You can horses during Spicer Gripp Memorial Roping in Hereford, make it. You’re all right,’” Texas, last fall. he recalls. “They had my back.” Hays says he and his parents “were Hallmark, provost and vice president for just normal people” who worked for academic affairs at West Texas A&M. everything they had, which wasn’t always Hallmark, who has known Hays since much, but Hays didn’t allow limited finanhe started attending the university about cial means stop him. a year ago, describes Hays’ work as stun“I knew if I was going to make it, I was ning. “It captures the essence of the old going to have to do it even if everybody West in what looks and feels like a 21st else was quitting,” he says. century manner.” Hays says his artistic style has changed over time, becoming more expressionistic, less realistic and increasingly unique. “There are parts of my pieces that are detailed and other parts that are abstract,” he says. “When you look at my art, you can definitely tell mine from everyone else’s.” Since graduating from OSU, Hays has been working on a master’s in fine arts at West Texas A&M University in Canyon. Besides writing his thesis, he also helps teach a life drawing and an advanced oil painting class. In the future, Hays hopes to become a college art professor. “I see myself just doing what I’m doing right now — just trying to carve my way in the art world,” he says. So far, he seems to be doing just that. “I think Chance is a tremendously talented artist, and clearly many others do as well, as his art sells well to discriminating audiences and is shown among elite collections across the country,” says James


Statues of Indu Meshri greet visitors at both the front and back entrances to the family home in Tulsa.


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in Remembrance of a Giver

Couple’s belief in the power of education lives on through endowed scholarship


ayal Meshri is a Tulsa philanthropist who gives to many causes in the name of his late wife, Indu. His most recent gift, and first to OSU, is a $100,001 endowment – including $1 for good luck – for scholarships at the OSU-Center for Health Sciences. It will receive a 2-to-1 match from the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, making the total impact $300,003 for incoming students with financial need. No doubt Indu would be proud. “We are honored by this historic gift, which when matched is our largest student scholarship gift to date,” says Kayse Shrum, D.O., provost of OSU-CHS and dean of its College of Osteopathic Medicine. “Scholarships are crucial to helping us fulfill our mission of preparing physicians for rural and under-served Oklahoma.” Dayal and Indu grew up with a deep appreciation for education and the way it can lift people out of poverty. They were born in Sindh, a British India province in part of modern-day Pakistan, in the early 1940s. They moved to Patan, India, in the ’50s before coming to America to finish their postgraduate educations and pursue their dreams in the ’60s. “Everybody has to have some mission in life,” Dayal says. “Education has been always my mission from childhood. My wife emphasized the same thing. She is for education and changes. We were brought

up in the old, traditional society. It has a regular path and a very narrow look. Because of this educational influence on me and my wife, we became alike in many respects. We realize that most of the problems of the modern world could be solved through education.” Both earned doctorates in America, with Dayal’s in chemistry from the University of Idaho in 1968 followed by post-doctoral work at Cornell University. He was inducted into the University of Idaho Hall of Fame in 2008 and the College of Science Academy of Distinguished Alumni in 2010. Indu became the second woman to complete a Ph.D. in the University of Tulsa’s Department of Geosciences, completing her study of geochemistry in 1981. She was inducted into the university’s

Indu Meshri as well as research and production facilities in India, is one of the world’s premier specialty chemical companies providing Inorganic Fluorides and Fluorocomplexes. Dayal is a world-renowned expert in fluoride chemistry who lectures across the globe and conducts research with associates in England, France, Georgia, Germany, India, Japan, Russia and Ukraine. He is also an honorary professor at the University in Dneproptrovsk, Ukraine. Indu worked 22 years as a geochemist at Amoco Research Center in Tulsa and was recognized as one of the world’s experts in basin modeling. Her research led to the development of 3-D modeling capable of predicting the porosity and permeability of rocks in oil and gas reservoirs. She received numerous awards during her career, including s­ cholarships

“We realize that most of the problems of the modern world could be solved through education.” — Dayal Meshri Engineering and Natural Sciences Hall of Fame in 2010. In 1987, Dayal founded Advance Research Chemicals Inc. in Catoosa, Okla. The company, which employs more than 80 Americans and has a plant in Mexico

at the University of Tulsa and the University of Bombay, Amoco awards for excellence, and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists Distinguished (continues on next page) 73

Lectureship, which took her around the world to lecture on the benefits of the integration of scientific disciplines in basin modeling. She was also as an honorary professor at the University of Tulsa, taught science to school children and was the driving force behind the establishment of the Hindu Temple of Tulsa. Indu was generous with her time and money and advocated for women’s rights globally before she passed away in 2005. Dayal has been making gifts in her honor since that time, including dedicating a park in Tulsa, endowing scholarships to college in Tulsa and Idaho, and establishing the Dr. Indu Dayal Meshri English Medium Prep, Primary and High Schools and the Dr. Indu Dayal Meshri College of Bio-Technology in Patan, the town in which he grew up. “She was a very talented woman,” Dayal says. “She was all in one. Not only was she a scholar, she was also an artist. She did beautiful paintings. She had a wonderful singing voice. She could knit, sew, cook, do a lot of things. She was really polite and simple and very fun.”

“I sat out for a year, working for my father’s company in a reception-type role,” Gita remembers. “My dad was so difficult to understand and to meet his expectations. I think looking back, he did it because he knew I had what it took to go back to medical school and he wanted me back there. I’m so grateful because I did decide to go back.” But she still had to convince the medical school to accept her again. She met with Dr. Larry Cherry, then the associate dean for clinical education and professor of family medicine. He was kind, but he also pressed her to convince him that she wouldn’t quit again, noting her departure the previous year had resulted in a wasted spot. “I said, ‘I want you to take it on faith that I will stick with it because I’m here and I have confidence now. I want to do this. Please trust that I will finish this time,’” Gita says. “OSU opened their arms to me. They didn’t put me through the ringer or make it harder. They just held me to the same standard as every other student. My heart will always be so grateful to Dr. Cherry, the school and the admissions team because

“My parents taught us that the more you give, the more you will be fortified as a human being,” Gita says. Adds Sanjay, “If we follow their lead, when they give, we give. It’s a good decision for us. We may be at different spots in our lives with responsibilities, children in school and other commitments, but we’ve been taught well. Even when mom and dad didn’t make the kind of money they did later on, when they saw someone in need or suffering, they’d give. They might have to skip a meal, but they’d give.”

“My parents taught us that the more you give, the more you will be fortified as a human being.” — Gita Meshri The couple’s son, Sanjay, is executive vice president and managing director of Advance Research Chemicals and holds a chemistry degree from the University of Tulsa. “Our parents taught us that there is no greater gift than education,” he says. “Maybe this gift will help some people attend OSU medical school who wouldn’t have gone otherwise.” Dayal and Indu’s daughter, Gita, is an obstetrician and gynecologist in California who earned her doctorate in osteopathic medicine at OSU-Center for Health Sciences. She actually quit the program nine weeks into her first year because she doubted her abilities after a poor score on an anatomy quiz.


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they didn’t have to, but they gave me a second chance.” Gita knew she wanted to become an obstetrician and gynecologist at age 11 when she learned her paternal grandmother had died in childbirth. That, combined with the passion she inherited from her mother to help women, made it a perfect career choice. “I’m really grateful to OSU for helping me achieve my goal, which has never been to make a lot of money or to have a business. My goal has always been to serve my community and women the way my mom did.” The entire family speaks with passion about helping others, and one of their favorite ways to do that is through education.

Dr. Dayal Meshri, seated, along with his son, Sanjay, and daughter, Gita, say Indu was a talented woman who demonstrated her concern for helping others.

The ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center is home to the OSU Alumni Association and the official University Visitor Center. Its more than 52,000 square feet include public facilities offering settings for upscale meeting and dining experiences. From intimate gatherings to large banquets, the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center is the

Perfect Location.

201 ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center Stillwater, OK 74078-7043 TEL 405.744.5368 • FAX 405.744.6722

The Sounds of Learning Gideon Thompson, a 2010 broadcast journalism and sports media graduate, works with Cal Garbe, a sports journalism and broadcast production senior, on one of the OSU Sports Media Club’s two EVS replay machines during a Cowgirl basketball game. Photos by Gary Lawson

Producing a live athletic show not as easy as it sounds 76

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If you’ve attended a Cowgirl Basketball game or a Cowboy Wrestling match this season, you’re undoubtedly familiar with the sounds of Gallagher-Iba Arena. There’s the roar of the crowd, the highpowered music from the band and the sounds of the athletes pounding the court or the mat. But for a few students attending the events, the sounds are completely different. “Ready two — take. Ready blue, ready ‘S.’ Effects to ‘S.’ Roll blue — dissolve.” These are the direction cues for a video replay making its way from a camera on the arena’s historic floor to a machine in the basement then up into the rafters and onto the video board. These are the sounds of learning. For the past two seasons, students from the Sports Media Club in the School of Media and Strategic Communications have been in charge of producing the show for the video boards and online streams of Cowboy Wrestling and Stillwater Pioneer Football. This season, they also began producing for Cowgirl Basketball. “We call it ROSCO,” says Marc Krein, associate professor of advanced video

Danilynn Welniak, a broadcast journalism and sports media senior, pans the high camera located on the concourse level of Gallagher-Iba Arena during a Cowgirl basketball game. Below: Melinda Thompson, a 2010 broadcast journalism and sports media graduate, cues a source on the video switcher that controls the cameras and replay machines feeding the Gallagher-Iba Arena jumbotron.


production and sports media production. “I’ve built four ROSCO’s in my career. I’ve always felt that if you can give a system a meaningful and catchy name, people will remember the name and what it is.” ROSCO has transformed the way broadcast students at OSU are learning the skills for their major and preparing themselves for a competitive job market. ROSCO stands for “Remote OSU Streaming Control Operation.” In layman’s terms, it’s a master control room for a television studio on wheels, and with it, the school is rolling into broadcast education history. “There are a couple of other institutions that educate broadcast students at live athletic events, but they bring in professionals to run the bulk of the systems,” Krein says. “These systems are typically fixed facilities. ROSCO is mobile, which enables us to work a wider variety of events. “Most of our crew is made up of students from the Sports Media Club.” Until now, fans didn’t know they were watching a live preview of student demo reels on the jumbotron. But from the cameras and the video switcher

to the replay machines and the audio board, most of the action produced for the jumbotron demonstrates the talent budding in the halls of the Paul Miller Journalism and Broadcasting Building. “I’ve done everything ROSCO has to offer, but I think running the EVS replay machine has to be the most interesting,” says Melinda Thompson, a recent OSU graduate who became involved with ROSCO her senior year. “There’s just so much to learn and so much you can do with one of those machines. It’s a lot of fun.” (continues on next page)


Ryan Wyckoff, a broadcast journalism and sports media senior, focuses a floor camera during a Cowboy wrestling match.

ROSCO’s two EVS machines, or “Elvises” as they’re nicknamed, are identical to the ones used in multimillion-dollar production trucks for broadcasters like ESPN, ABC and FOX. Each machine can record two live feeds from cameras and instantly rewind the feeds for replays while continuing to record, not unlike a household DVR. But becoming a good EVS operator requires hours of training and experience on these machines. While other students across the country are standing by watching the professionals, OSU students are taking the controls night after night. “Any initiative that brings students into contact with real-life professional situations is a unique educational experience,” says Derina Holtzhausen, director of the School of Media and Strategic Communications. “What ROSCO does is to introduce students to the use of complex and advanced technology in the field.” Thompson says ROSCO has enhanced her broadcast education and knowledge more than she could have imagined. “It’s the best way to learn because you’re not watching someone else do it. You’re out there doing everything yourself.” That experience is paying off for graduates who know all too well the difficulties of starting out in the broadcast business. “The experience not only educates, but it’s also the reason the TV networks contact us for qualified production assistance from our students,” Krein says. “We’ve had students working the Super Bowl, Oklahoma City Thunder games, OSU and OU events, and numerous other productions.” In total, Krein says it took one year to develop the plan for ROSCO and two years to secure all the funding and grants before the project became a reality.


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“More than just setting up cables and cameras, I’ve learned about the conversations and problems encountered during a remote production.” – Ryan Wyckoff, senior Building the system required quite a bit of television engineering experience, Krein says, which was provided in part by the OSU Institute of Teaching and Learning Excellence and video production manager Tim Cushing. Students also helped develop the plan for ROSCO — a task that fell upon graduate teaching assistant Jayson Evans

and undergraduate Jeremy Davis. Davis graduated from the school in 2007 and now works for OSU Communications as a videographer. He became involved with the Sports Media Club during his freshman year, and he never left. “As an OSU graduate and current OSU employee, it’s great to see so many students have the opportunity to get

Courtesy Photo

Tyler Thomason, a sports media and broadcast production senior, captures pregame warm-ups with the wireless camera during a Stillwater High School football game at Pioneer Stadium.

real-world broadcast experience before they graduate,” Davis says. “As a student, I was always looking for ways to get involved and learn about live broadcasts because it’s not something you can fully understand from a book or watching it. “Being able to give students the ability to experience the speed and chaos of live broadcasts before they leave college is a huge benefit, and I’m grateful that I’ve been able to give back in a small way,” says Davis, who serves as the engineer for ROSCO. He helps set up equipment before each show and troubleshoot problems that

can and often do arise. Besides events at Gallagher-Iba Arena and Pioneer Stadium, ROSCO also produced live streams for OSU softball and soccer, Spring Sing and Homecoming’s Sea of Orange Parade. “ROSCO allows me to gain experience that students at many other schools won’t ever have the chance to get,” says Ryan Wyckoff, a broadcast journalism and sports media senior who runs cameras for ROSCO. “More than just setting up cables and cameras, I’ve learned about the conversations and problems that are encountered during a remote production.”

Anyone involved with ROSCO will tell you there were plenty of problems in the beginning. Gallagher-Iba Arena, now more than 10 years removed from its renovation, was not built to serve two production crews using two different sets of equipment. It took many events and handoffs between ROSCO and Cox Communications, which is contracted for Cowboy Basketball, before a “perfect show” was achieved. “We are proud to have students in a live lab during our events,” says Amy Weeks, associate athletic director, who served as coordinator between OSU Athletics and ROSCO. “They have done a great job, and the end results on the boards have been very professional.” In the future, Krein hopes to upgrade ROSCO to high definition and also upgrade the camera lenses used with the system. He also hopes to branch out and produce more non-sporting events such as debates, lectures and concerts. That diversity will further prepare students for life outside of the classroom. “Every event is different — the set up, the problems, the outcome,” Thompson says. “It keeps it interesting. “The practical experience from ROSCO prepared me for what it would be like to work in a professional environment and gave me the skills to succeed,” says Thompson, who landed a job as a videographer for OSU Fire Service Training after graduation. “I would not be where I am today without what I gained from ROSCO.” C h as e Car t e r

To learn more about ROSCO and the School of Media and Strategic Communication’s Sports Media Club, visit


A Mother’s Legacy Sixteen years after the Oklahoma City bombing took the life of OSU alumna Margaret “Peggy” Clark, her family and friends honor her by living life to the fullest.

S t o r y   B y   M a t t   E l l io t t Phot og r a ph y by ph i l  shock ley


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Dr. Margaret “Peggy” Clark’s family carries on her legacy through their love for agriculture, animals and each other. From left are her husband, David Spencer, daughters Chelsea Spencer, Blayne (Spencer) Arthur and Dr. Rosslyn SpencerBiggs, and grandchildren Kelton, 3, and Maguire.


Spencer, a 1974 animal science alumalk to three OSU alumnae, and you won’t hear any trace of bitterness nus who also works for the Oklahoma or anger. They’re all about life and living it to the fullest. Department of Health and Human That’s what sisters Dr. Rosslyn Spencer-Biggs, Blayne Arthur and Services. The family farmed, raised liveChelsea Spencer say their mom, Dr. Margaret “Peggy” Clark, would’ve stock, were active in FFA, 4-H and were wanted. Clark, who graduated from OSU’s veterinary college in 1978, well-known in the town of about 17,000. died in the April 19, 1995, Oklahoma City bombing. The girls won numerous awards in the Clark was a veterinary medical officer with the U.S. Department of Agriculture show cattle and horse circuit, winning who spent most of her time in the field, and it was rare for her to be in the office, but state and national championships. Their events that day brought her to the downtown federal building. dad made sure they kept up with their “There aren’t a whole lot of options,” says Biggs, the oldest sister who is now a studies in school. They also had to chip veterinary medical officer with the governin with the family’s strong show horse ment like her mother was years ago. “We “I wish she could be here. and cattle business. could be angry. But it’s not going to make “It keeps you out of trouble,” Blayne anything better.” But we also feel very says. “We didn’t have time to do anything Rosslyn was 16, Blayne was 13 and fortunate that we had else.” Chelsea was 6 when their mother was her here for as long as we Clark, who worked for the racetrack killed 16 years ago. They relied on family, Blue Ribbon Downs before she went to friends and their tight-knit hometown of did.” — Blayne (Spencer) Arthur the USDA, was devoted to her family and Chickasha, Okla., for support. their horses. She always made an effort The sisters didn’t follow the trials or to involve her children in agriculture, and she instilled in them the need to do right by media coverage. They preferred to focus people and animals alike. She inspired Rosslyn to become a veterinarian. on remembering their mother, what she “I think seeing her work on animals and prevent or treat whatever ailment they had stood for and the values she passed on would be cool for any kid to get to see, especially if it’s your mom,” Rosslyn says. to them. “She really involved us with the profession of veterinary health. We got to meet Clark ran the family farm near Chickasha with her husband, David (continues on next page)


David Spencer, a 1974 animal science alumnus, says his wife, the late Margaret “Peggy” Clark, would be proud of their daughters’ successful lives. All are OSU graduates, and the oldest, below, Dr. Rosslyn Spencer-Biggs followed her mother’s lead into veterinary medicine.


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“I feel that I could not have asked for people, and those were the kind of people that I wanted to be associated with and more from my three daughters,” Spencer be like.” says. “They have excelled in every All three girls were valedictorians at Chickasha High School when they graduaspect of their lives from professional ated. When the time came, they went to OSU not only because their parents did, but accomplishments to being dedicated because of the excellent reputation of the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural mothers. They make me very proud to be Resources. their father.” At OSU, staff took extra time to recruit the sisters, putting them in touch with professors and others within the university, including then-president Jim Halligan. Remembering her friend They also appreciated OSU’s family-like atmosphere. Chelsea, the youngest of the The anniversary comes and goes, but three, says it caught her off guard when she realized many of the faculty remembered Clark’s friends, including Oklahoma Rep. her sisters and could identify her immediately as their sibling. Lee Denney, miss her no matter what “Someone would say, ‘I taught your sister.’ My teachers knew exactly who I was.” time of year it is. Blayne remembers classmates showed enough concern about each other to call when Denney and Clark became friends at someone was absent. Staff members would do the same, she says. OSU, attended veterinary school together, Rosslyn graduated from OSU’s Center for Veterinary Health Sciences in 2004 and married just a year apart and often worked in private practice for several years before joining the USDA, where she works worked together through Denney’s veteriwith some who still remember her mother. nary practice in Cushing, Okla. Rosslyn and her husband, Scott, are parents of a daughter, Maguire Clarke Biggs, “She was a very loyal friend,” says and live in central Oklahoma, where they raise horses and tricolor Welsh corgis. Denney, who laughs at memories the Blayne graduated in 2004, too, two made cruising the Strip in Stillwater with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural as college students and later working “I think seeing her work economics. She works for the Oklahoma together as adults. Department of Agriculture, Food, and on animals and prevent As students, Clark was interested in Forestry as associate commissioner for or treat whatever ailment equine medicine, and Denney took to the organization’s director, Secretary Jim small animal medicine. They spent a lot they had would be cool Reese. She is head of the communications of time studying together inside McElroy division and helps craft agriculture legislafor any kid to get to see, Hall. During spring break, the two would tion and policy at the state capitol. Blayne, especially if it’s your load up Clark’s Ford Pinto and head to her husband, Jerrod, and son, Kelton, 3, Taos, N.M., with her Saint Bernard, Blue, mom. She really involved live near Stillwater on a farm where they in the back seat. They’d ski and visit run Lucky Strike show cattle. us with the profession Clark’s aunt and grandmother there. Chelsea graduated in 2010 with a of veterinary health.” “We would play cards in the evenings degree in agricultural economics and is and just enjoy each other’s company, — Dr. Rosslyn Spencer-Biggs now studying education at Kansas State. and her aunt would fix gourmet meals,” All three girls still show livestock on Denney says. the weekends. They’ve got great lives and Clark had a strong sense of humor, Denney says, and it showed in ways she still good families. laughs about today. She remembers a fellow college student who bet them he could eat People often remark how well12 cheeseburgers at McDonald’s after a test. adjusted they seem after enduring such “Of course, Peggy was the type to take him up on it,” Denney says. “We bet him. a tragedy. Blayne says she’s not as angry After the test, we all went to McDonald’s. We were going to buy them as long as he about what happened, especially now would eat them. And of course, he could eat them. He got eleven of them down but he that she’s a mother herself. But she’s often couldn’t get number twelve. So he had to pay us for all twelve.” sad her mom can’t be here for special Denney finished veterinary school in 1978 and became a small-animal veterinarmoments, such as the birth of her first ian. She often asked Clark to help with her practice’s large animal calls when Denney’s grandchild. “I wish she could be here,” Blayne says. husband, who normally handled those, was out of town. Clark’s legacy, and her love for agriculture, lives on in her children, Denney says, “But we also feel very fortunate that we and in her beautiful grandchildren whom she never met. had her here for as long as we did.” “We keep up with her family still today. We’re very close to all three of their girls. “We realize lots of other people went They’ve grown up to be amazing young women, all three of them.” through the same experience, or even worse,” Chelsea says. “All we can do is just continue on with the things we would’ve done anyway.” Their father says he couldn’t be more proud of them.


McKnights Endow Rural Student Scholarships Through Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, the impact will reach $30 million


OSU alumni Ross and Billie McKnight, co-chairs of the Branding Success campaign, gave $10 million to help the university attract more student leaders from rural communities.


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f you walked into Ross and Billie McKnight’s home in the north-central Texas town of Throckmorton, you would see the importance of family in the photos on every shelf and get a hint of their passion for OSU from the smattering of orange around the house. When they put on their boots and head out to the pastures to check on their cattle, you might get an inkling that they are giants in the region in energy, ranching, banking and real estate. But when you are greeted by their gracious smiles and generous hospitality, you are not surprised to learn they are also significant contributors to the Branding Success campaign. In fact, as campaign co-chairs, they are leading by example. They recently gave $10 million to the $1 billion comprehensive campaign to endow a student leadership and scholarship program for out-of-state students. In keeping with their passion for rural students, the endowment will help OSU recruit and retain student leaders from rural communities with a preference for natives of north Texas. Their gift qualifies for a 2-for-1 estate match from the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program. Thus, the total impact of their donation will be $30 million, eventually producing $1.5 million annually for student scholarships. “This generous commitment is from two of our most loyal alumni. They have clearly not forgotten their rural roots and how Oklahoma State prepared them to pursue their dreams,” says OSU President Burns Hargis. “As a result of this wonderful gift for rural student leadership scholarships, Oklahoma State embraces our land-grant heritage and can step up our recruitment for students involved in exceptional programs such as 4-H and FFA.” Recipients of this scholarship will do more than just have good grades and participate in extracurricular activities in high school. They will also exhibit strong leadership ability through their experiences. The McKnights believe OSU is already getting the best leaders from every rural Oklahoma school. This gift is designed to enable OSU to also attract the best leaders from rural towns outside Oklahoma.

The McKnights are two of OSU’s most passionate ambassadors, leading the university toward unprecedented success. Ross was co-chair of the Next Level Campaign that raised more than $100 million to expand the OSU football stadium and also was inducted into the OSU Hall of Fame in 2006, received the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1996 and was awarded the Graduate of Distinction of the Department of Animal Science in 1998. “Billie and I are pleased to make this gift to our alma mater, Oklahoma State University,” Ross says. “Oklahoma State means so much to both of us. In addition to receiving an excellent education, we also met at OSU. “Without Oklahoma State, Billie and I would not be where we are today. And, as students from rural communities, we discovered the same welcoming and friendly environment at OSU that we had experienced back home. To this day, we are both grateful to Oklahoma State, and we remember fondly the faculty and administrators who took an interest in us and challenged us to be more than we thought we could be.

immediately he was smitten. The ’71 animal science alumnus and ’73 general business alumna have remained loyal to their alma mater for more than 30 years. Their two children, Meggan and Trent, also graduated from Oklahoma State. The McKnights’ generous gift establishes the McKnight Leader Scholars Scholarship Endowment and will initially enable OSU to recruit up to 50 students annually from rural areas and small towns primarily in north Texas, where the McKnights live and manage their banking, energy, real estate and ranching businesses. “Student scholarships are at the heart of our Branding Success campaign, representing $500 million of the $1 billion total. This incredible gift from Billie and Ross provides a significant boost to achieving the $500 million scholarship goal,” says OSU Foundation President and CEO Kirk Jewell. “We are deeply appreciative of their service as campaign co-chairs, as well as for this generous gift.” Adam Deidrich, a mechanical and aerospace engineering junior from the Texas panhandle community of Perryton, is a member of many campus organiza-

“OSU was such a positive experience in our lives that Ross and I want to make sure more rural students enjoy the same opportunity to make their own brand of success at OSU, and then in life, as we have.” — Billie McKnight “This gift reflects our appreciation to OSU and also our desire to help students from rural communities attend OSU,” Ross says. “Not only will these students find a path to success like we did at OSU, but they will also make a huge contribution to OSU while in school. OSU taught Billie and me to live with courage, work with pride, speak with honesty and keep our promises. These are values instilled in rural students through FFA and 4-H.” Ross and Billie met in 1971 when Ross was a senior and Billie was a freshman. As president of the Student Government Association, Ross selected himself as a judge for the Freshman Queen contest in which Billie was a contestant, and almost

tions and holds leadership positions with the OSU Student Foundation and the OSU Aggies Spirit Group. “Mr. and Mrs. McKnight are perfect examples of the type of leaders that come out of small communities,” Deidrich says. “Many of my classmates exhibit leadership characteristics as a result of growing up in small towns. This gift will provide even more of us the opportunity to refine our leadership skills in the OSU system.” Billie sums it up perfectly, “OSU was such a positive experience in our lives that Ross and I want to make sure more rural students enjoy the same opportunity to make their own brand of success at OSU, and then in life, as we have.”


Through good times and bad, through sickness and health, this couple remains loyal to each other and OSU.


aul and Connie Brown are que two OSU alumni with a uni 50 ir the In ry. sto ng chi and tou ed years of marriage, they rais houg thr d live n, ldre chi two ed out the countr y and sur viv cer. can breast Both of them. But their story didn’t begin at with breast cancer. It began in John Marshall High School Oklahoma Cit y. Connie was the one who first asked Paul out in high school for the annual Sadie Hawkins’ dance.


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able to conver t her from an “He always tells the story n’t OU to OSU fan, and she has I that he wasn’t the first guy looked back since. e asked,” Connie laughs. “Th “OU people were just not first guy had other plans so “I ver y friendly,” Connie says. Paul just went along and our e had so much fun when I cam re.” relationship grew from the up here to visit, but it was When it came time for good to be apart for a while. ir college the two had to go the Absences make the heart d at separate ways. Paul enrolle h a grow fonder.” OSU where he graduated wit The two married during tradegree in business adminis Paul’s senior year at OSU. d tion in 1961. Connie attende t Connie says during their firs a in the University of Oklahom y few months of marriage, the of Norman and the University lived on $20 a week and had ond, Central Oklahoma in Edm the a small apartment for just where she studied nursing. two of them. d Although she never attende (continues on page 88) s OSU, Connie says Paul wa

Connie and Paul Brown say their life experiences make them more appreciative of every day they share together.

Photo / Gary Lawson


In addition to living in the Paul began working for l’s Rockies and Ponca Cit y, Pau t Conoco, and his career sen e Lin e Pip o career with Conoc them to several places in a ant Atl to ily also took the fam the Rocky Mountains the the s say he and Houston, but e first several years they wer ted family never felt disconnec married. from OSU. Paul worked with “The one good thing about r Conoco Pipe Line and late in the various places we lived ConocoPhillips for 35 years. U OS of lot a is that there were Throughout his career he d rke wo and alumni we knew made numerous trips to the h,” Paul says. “It was kind wit OSU campuses in Stillwater t of like home because we kep and Okmulgee to recruit for no s live OSU a par t of our the company. matter where we lived.” The Browns had two chilPaul and Connie’s love in dren, Teresa in 1961 and Kev for their alma mater helped e in 1964. When the two wer h one of eed suppor t them throug growing up, the Browns agr periods in g gin the most challen there was no question they their lives. would be attending OSU, and In 2002, Paul was diagir they made sure to bring the nosed with breast cancer. The as children to OSU’s campus to diagnosis came as a shock often as possible. t tha ned lear o U the Browns, wh Teresa graduated from OS ast bre all only 1 percent of . in 1984 and Kevin in 1988 cancer cases occur in men Teresa remembers when she ere and are typically more sev was 8 years old how excited go can e turf because the diseas her dad was about the new unchecked. Paul underwent had at Lewis Field. The family chemotherapy, surger y and and just moved to Ponca Cit y, radiation in 2002 and again the he brought them all to see rin 2008 because of a reoccu installation of Lewis Field’s cer can the of e rence. Since som first astro turf in 1971. She tic pha lym spots are in his wsays she remembers him sho l system and inoperable, Pau e nni ing them where he and Co e hav l wil he e says it’s a diseas twould have their season foo . life his of rest to deal with the line, ball tickets on the 50-yard the 0, 201 On Jan. 27, 40 tickets they still have some te Browns were ready to celebra years later. y sar th iver ann g their 49 weddin “As far as I knew, OSU e fac to e fac e but instead cam n was the only college that eve with the disease once again. s existed in Oklahoma,” say o This time, it was Connie wh n an Teresa, whose dad has bee ast bre h was diagnosed wit er Alumni Association memb cancer. Her disease included for several decades. , two different types of cancer “We would all load up in re mo ch mu s one of which wa r the car on game day and afte aggressive. To combat the the games we would walk aggressive cancer, Connie ’t around the campus. I couldn underwent a double mastec wait to get there!” es typ nt ere diff tomy and three y. of chemotherap


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“T heir love for the unive rsity ha s been pa ssed down to their children and grandchildren ….”

John Marshall High School

dance 1956

free and Paul continues to keep his cancer in check. The l for Browns say they’re hopefu tter ma no t tha their future and ain rem ays what, they’ll alw te. suppor ters of Oklahoma Sta ver uni the “Their love for n dow sed sity has been pas to their children and grandor children, all of whom plan sity ver uni he desire to attend w someday,” Kevin says. “I kno find er nev l for a fact you wil s.” two more dedicated OSU fan stay m the d che “I have wat together for more than 50 at years, and now I know wh er rich h oug thr the vows mean, for granted.” in and s nes or poorer, in sick Paul and Connie celebrated health, through good times their 50th wedding anniver at and bad,” Teresa says. “Th in sar y with a trip to Hawaii can I n tha ion is more inspirat February. One month later, even express in words.” Connie was declared cancer

Paul and Connie agree cer ir the experiences with can have brought them closer as m a family and have made the e more grateful for their tim also together. Their trials have o inspired their children, wh s watched both their parent endure this life-threatening disease with impeccable strength and resilience. “This experience has made t we us appreciate each day tha s. have together,” Teresa say te “Each bir thday they celebra s. day is so much sweeter these We never take one minute

High school graduation 195


Despite their illnesses, the Browns say their love for the Cowboys never wavered, and the they continued to attend all ll tba foo OSU basketball and s. games, including bowl trip r the ano ays “There was alw ing com tch game or another ma up,” Paul says. “The only lkdifference was we were wa uld wo ing a little slower and slip out a little early.” The Browns have used their sicknesses as a means to educate others. Since he le was first diagnosed with ma y the s say l breast cancer, Pau have been able to discuss the l illness with other men, as wel ns. geo sur as oncologists and Their son even entered a s beauty contest, where he wa lly ecia esp , pressing for people

men, to watch out for male breast cancer. “He wore a ladies’ bathing suit,” Connie says. “It was ridiculous, but he was proud rass of that and it didn’t embar ” him at bit. The Browns say they have ple two pieces of advice for peo t, Firs ry. sto ir the r who hea both men and women should cer be examined for breast can d An ly. ear ght cau be so it can , sed gno dia are you if , second and ive act stay st you mu remain positive. “There are days when you’re sicker than a dog, but d that is when I looked to Go o “D s. say e nni Co ,” for help not give in to it — it will get you if you do.”

Wedding Jan . 27, 1961


All OSU-Oklahoma City Precision Driving Training Police and EVOC instructors have a background in law enforcement. Will Orr has 28 years experience with the Oklahoma City Fire Department, Bill Hughes has 27 years of law enforcement experience and retired as assistant chief of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Jerry Cason is a retired chief with 34 years of experience, and Charlie Childers is a retired sergeant with 30 years of experience.


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Precision driving program helps drivers put the brakes on accidents hen Oklahoma City first responders need a one-stop program encompassing hands-on learning in all vehicles ranging from fire trucks to motorcycles, they can count on OSU-Oklahoma City’s Precision Driving Training. The one-of-a-kind facility offers advanced driving skills for emergency vehicle operators and the community with exclusive training in the university’s SkidSUV, ambulance, fire truck, motorcycles and police vehicles. “The sole focus and purpose of our training program is to spare injuries and save lives,” says Ron Pierce, lead motorcycle instructor. “Our facility is one of the most unique aspects of our training.”

Precision Driver Training Police and Emergency Vehicle Operator Course (EVOC) instructor Will Orr agrees with Pierce about the uniqueness of the facility. He says the skills pad has a highway design where accident avoidance, lane change, threshold braking and residential backing are taught, while the SkidSUV simulates adverse road conditions. “Our outside track can demo every type of curve encountered in rural and city driving,” Orr says. “Our Precision Driving Training course takes everyday drivers and teaches them skills taught to emergency vehicle operators. The result is that drivers, their families and the people they share the roadways with are safer.” Not only is the facility something unique, but so are the instructors. All of the Precision Driving Training instructors have extensive driving experience in their respective fields. The majority are former first responders, which gives them more knowledge on how to train local policemen, firemen and emergency medical technicians.

“Our outside track can demo every type of curve encountered in rural and city driving.” — Will Orr “The training at OSU-OKC is unique because we have a professional staff from all areas of community service instructing at one of the best facilities using the latest techniques and equipment,” says Bill Hughes, Precision Driving Training police and EVOC instructor. “Most schools consist of classroom and/or limited driving, but at OSU-OKC students are put in stressful, evasive maneuvers and skids under controlled conditions that improve their driving skills at higher levels.”

Photos / Sonni Gladden

Hughes says the instructors’ knowledge coupled with the facility’s capabilities help the community by creating better drivers at all levels. “New drivers up to current police officers are instructed, making a safer environment for all. First responders benefit from the availability of advanced training that smaller agencies or departments don’t often receive.” OSU-OKC’s Precision Driving Training fleet consists of 16 motorcycles ranging from 125cc’s to 500cc’s, one fire engine, one ambulance, one SkidSUV and 14 other vehicles. From 2009 to 2010, more than 2,600 participants took Precision Driving Training courses specializing in everything from teen driving to experienced motorcycle courses to advanced law enforcement driver training. “Most every person who turns 16 will operate a motor vehicle. Nowhere in the formal educational process is there any education on vehicle laws or vehicle dynamics,” says Jerry Cason, Precision Driving Training Police and EVOC instructor. “OSU-OKC has a program that is putting forth an effort to bring about change. There are very few institutions of higher education in this nation that provide this type of training.” Other courses such as Defensive Driving enhance already-present skills in licensed drivers. “The Defensive Driving Course is designed to strengthen basic driving skills for the average licensed driver,” says Charlie Childers, Precision Driving

Training police and EVOC instructor. “Our goal is to train drivers to become proactive drivers versus reactive drivers in an effort to reduce the incident of collisions and death.” Looking forward, Cason would like to see OSU-Oklahoma City be the standard for all state agency training. “Every state agency has a risk management program, but there are no provisions for hands-on retraining, only classroom lectures,” Cason says. “As a state agency, OSU-OKC should be the vehicle for training and remedial training for all state agencies.”  Cason is confident OSU-OKC’s Precision Driving Training courses can combat the leading cause of death and injury in the United States — vehicular crashes. “We can help police officers perform their duties better and we can make citizens better drivers, while reducing death and injuries on our streets and highways,” he says. Lloyd Scott, Precision Driving Training police and EVOC instructor, says that by taking any of the courses the facility offers, community roadways are a bit more secure. “Each student finishing any of the driving courses such as motorcycles, trucks, buses, emergency response, driver’s education and commercial class has the knowledge and skill to be a low-risk driver,” Scott says. “This in turn can make the community a safer place.” Kandac e D o ds o n


Pooling Their Resources

Alumni ExxonMobil Controllers unite for an immeasurable impact

OSU has long been blessed with generous donors whose support has improved the entire OSU system and helped the university fulfill its land-grant mission. One of the best examples is a group with ties to the ExxonMobil controllers who have been pooling their resources for the past seven years to make a greater impact at OSU. An inspiring decision In 2004, Jim Alcock, a 1964 economics graduate who added an MBA in ’65, had an idea that would eventually turn into a multimillion-dollar endowment. In recognition of their experiences at OSU, he and his wife, Linda, a ’65 family resources and child development alumna, wanted to give back to their alma mater. They started recruiting colleagues who were or had been controllers at ExxonMobil to create a scholarship in the company’s name. The number of donors for the ExxonMobil Controllers Alumni Fund, which supports students seeking a master’s in business administration, has grown over the past seven years. Together, Jim (’59, accounting,’63, MBA) and Susan Heidebrecht; Suzanne (’63, business education) and Thomas Hill; Terry Hinshaw (’62, accounting,’63, master’s in accounting); Don (’71, industrial engineering) and Cathey Humphreys; Bill (’63, general business) and Toni Stone (’63, English, and ’67, master’s in education); Stan (’63, industrial engineering) and Kathleen Strong (’63, business and public administration); Rhonda (’73, math) and Donald Sweeney; and Alan (’62, accounting,’63, master’s in accounting) and Paula Tye have created the sizable endowment. “We wanted to acknowledge these two organizations that were so meaningful in our lives,” says Jim Alcock. “We were trying to get as many people as possible to participate in the pool. All of us enjoyed our time at OSU, and we all enjoyed our


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careers with ExxonMobil. We thought this was a great opportunity to further enhance that bond.” Jim Heidebrecht adds, “ExxonMobil has always inspired its employees to give back to the community both financially and through volunteer services. It was natural that all of us would choose OSU in honor of all OSU did for us.” The fund started as a three-year pledge, but after the Branding Success campaign launched in 2007, the group decided to continue giving. By 2009, it had grown to more than $363,000. Then when Boone Pickens began the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match, most of the group took advantage of that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Their gifts were not only leveraged by Pickens’ generosity, but also ExxonMobil’s 3-to-1 matching program. Those two matches work together to create an incredible impact. For example, a $5,000 payment from a donor would be paired with a $15,000 payment from the

Supporters of the ExxonMobil Controllers Alumni Fund, shown above and to the left, regularly reunite at OSU football games. Joining them in the group photo are ExxonMobil Chairman, President and CEO Rex Tillerson (second row, far right) and his wife, Renda (front row, second from right). ExxonMobil Foundation. If that combined $20,000 came in before the deadline of Feb. 28, 2010, it would receive a 2-to-1 match from the Pickens Match fund, for a total impact of $60,000. As of press time, the group combined to give and commit an additional $880,000 in funds for the Pickens Match, which will lead to a total of $2,235,216.25 added to the endowment. Including the previous gifts, it will grow to more than $2.5 million, producing in excess of $125,000 in annual scholarships. “The combination of the ExxonMobil match and the Pickens Match greatly expand the amount of good that an individual can do,” says Terry Hinshaw. “It’s a really great boon to the university as well as the students that benefit from it.” Although the fund has created a significant bond between the controllers and OSU,

ExxonMobil’s connection to the university predates this endowment, as ExxonMobil has long hired OSU graduates. “We are very proud of the many outstanding employees we have had from OSU over the years,” says Don Humphreys, senior vice president and treasurer for ExxonMobil. “I am very pleased with the tremendous generosity of the ExxonMobil annuitants who have given to this scholarship.” “Giving to this fund was doing something for both the company and the university,” adds Stan Strong. “When the company comes to OSU, we want ExxonMobil to have a good reputation among the students. I hope we have successfully done that throughout the years.” Most of the controllers worked overseas, but many helped with recruiting endeavors at OSU. Rhonda Sweeney started recruiting students in 1975. For more than 30 years, she sustained her relationship with the faculty and administrators while also creating a lasting impact on OSU students. “My experience with OSU has really lasted through my career at ExxonMobil,” she says. “All of that experience was very positive, so OSU is very dear to me. I enjoyed being a part of the ExxonMobil effort to recruit OSU students.” The bonds they have created throughout their careers and commitments to their alma mater will only continue to grow. “It is a real pleasure to join fellow ExxonMobil employees and retirees in donating funds that will provide student scholarships for the Spears School of Business,” Bill Stone says. “By partnering with ExxonMobil and Boone Pickens, these donations are further magnified and represent a significant investment to increase the level of excellence at OSU.” An immeasurable impact Since 2008, the fund has awarded five students a total of nearly $25,000 in scholarships. The number of scholarships and their size will both grow as the endowment does.  For Matt Quade and Chris Pryor, the scholarships served as an encouragement to continue pursuing their goals, and both earned debt-free MBAs from OSU, where

Doctoral students Chris Pryor, left, and Matt Quade received the ExxonMobil Controllers Alumni Fund scholarship during their MBA study at OSU.

they are now working toward doctorates with aspirations of becoming professors. Quade, one of the first recipients, finished his master’s in May 2008 and married that summer. “I want to thank the donors for their selfless giving to our university,” Quade says. “The financial gift they provided was a true blessing to me as I worked on my MBA and had a lasting impact even beyond the completion of my degree. Both my wife and I are extremely grateful for their support and commitment to OSU.” Pryor majored in journalism at the University of Oklahoma and started working at the Muskogee, Okla., newspaper after graduation. A few years later, he enrolled at OSU and completed his MBA in December 2009. “The scholarship created a low-stress situation for me,” Pryor says. “I was working because I wanted to, not because I had to. Debt was not piling up. And I was able to participate in all the other

aspects of the MBA program and school that make being a college student great.” The donors hope their scholarships will encourage more students to attend OSU. They have enjoyed working together to create such an impact. “Being able to help some kids do things that they might not be able to do without a scholarship is a very rewarding experience for me,” Alan Tye says. For Quade and Pryor, the scholarships not only assisted with their master’s degrees but also inspired future aspirations and a giving spirit. “I hope that someday I will get the chance to meet the people who helped pay for my MBA,” Pryor says. “I owe them a lot. And even though I think they might say, ‘What you owe is to the next generation,’ they’re right. I expect to fund scholarships of my own the instant I can.” O Kat i e A nn R o b i ns o n



Illustration / Nalee Thao, grapgic design senior

This orange connection lasts a lifetime The OSU Alumni Association would like to recognize the following individuals who are now connected for life to OSU through their new life memberships purchased in 2010. To inquire about becoming a life member of the Alumni Association, visit or contact Kathryn Bolay-Staude at 405-744-5368. Jared Ackerman, ’09

J. B. Bittner, ’80

Kathryn Buckley, ’76

Bob Acklin, ’64

Amy Black, ’02

Donald Bumpass, ’66

Kerry Alexander, ’86

Joshua Black, ’04

Thomas Burger, ’99

Blake Allen, ’03

Ashley Blakely, ’09

Harve Cathey, ’65

Erin Alward, ’98

Jared Boehs, ’04

Patricia Chapin, ’78

Alan Aneshansley, ’71

Elise Bolay, ’07

Mary Chastain, ’03

Robert Arnold, ’90

Scott Bourns, ’95

Zac Chastain, ’03

Jill Ashbrener, ’06

Rod Branch, ’80

Christopher Cheatham, ’03

Keith Ashburn, ’80

Amanda Brandenburg, ’99

Chad Choat, ’94

Rebecca Ashburn, ’80

Terry Brandenburg

Marcia Christofferson, ’72

Jeff Baggett, ’78

Beth Bridgewater, ’86

Robert Chronister, ’84

Elizabeth Bailey, ’72

Grant Bridgewater, ’88

Anthony Coghill, ’01

Merlene Baird, ’61

Jennifer Broker, ’99

Jillian Coghill

Caleb Bates, ’07

John Broker, ’98

Jonathan Cook, ’10

David Beck, ’85

Afton Brower, ’03

Kyle Cordis, ’09


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John Cothren, ’98 Jim Criswell, ’72 Brian Crow, ’94 David Cunningham, ’09 DiAnne Cunningham, ’77 Janie Cupp, ’78 Pamela Daniels, ’06 Deborah Davis Julie Deaton Steven Deaton John Dickinson, ’10 Karen Divine, ’83 Thomas Divine, ’84 Scott Doornbos, ’92 Sheryl Doornbos, ’91 Jamie Doyal, ’09 Crystal Drennan Matthew Drennan, ’04 Bryan Durant, ’00 Mary Durant, ’00 Joseph Duvall, ’05 Starr Duvall, ’05

Stephen Earl, ’09

Mary Etta Jafek, ’71

Bob Noble, ’66

Bob Sternberg

Janine Eggers, ’82

Glen Jennings, ’74

Dara Nordstog, ’09

Jennifer Stevenson, ’08

Michell Eischen, ’92

Eric Johnson, ’06

Shelby Norman, ’07

Woody Stevenson

Garen Ewbank, ’72

Brian Jones, ’01

Evelyn Otto, ’75

Nancy Stice

Vicki Ewbank, ’71

Jerry Kadavy

Zach Overton, ’96

Richard Stice

Chet Fenimore, ’85

Deanna Kanady

John Page, ’07

Robert Streeter

James Ferrell, ’97

Mark Kanady, ’86

Barbara Paige, ’78

Tara Streeter, ’05

Dick Fischer

Terry Kern, ’66

Harold Palmer

Bob Strunk, ’60

Carroll Fisher, ’63

James Kerr, ’99

Lance Parkhill

Cindy Stuckey, ’90

Janis Fleenor

Kimberly Kerr, ’93

Tina Parkhill, ’93

Karl Stuckey, ’90

Gary Ford, ’75

Amy Kesner, ’93

Larry Parks

Ryan Teubner, ’03

Susan Ford, ’76

Jonathan Kim, ’98

Lee Passmore, ’01

Matt Thompson, ’96

Jenni Fosbenner, ’00

Meredith Knowles, ’06

Candice Pearson, ’91

Serenity Thompson, ’98

Trisha Franklin

Tony Kroll, ’89

Ben Perez, ’98

Barry Vandevier, ’92

Kent Gardner, ’01

Laurette Lahey, ’86

David Phillips, ’77

Jacqueline Vassar, ’91

Michael Gibbs, ’80

Jamie Lane, ’04

Jamee Phillips, ’76

Jack Vaughan, ’04

Chelsea Gilliam, ’10

Paul Lazzara, ’89

Regina Phillips, ’87

Lori Vaughan, ’97

Donna Gilliam

Sheila Lazzara, ’88

Wayne Phillips, ’86

Paul Venincasa, ’85

Gary Gilliam, ’65

Kenneth Lenfestey

Tony Pickard, ’82

Gary Vogel, ’71

Aubrey Gooden, ’10

Jamie Levescy, ’93

Gary Price, ’66

Cindy Waits

Heather Grismore, ’07

Jami Longacre, ’93

Rosalind Price, ’66

David Waits, ’86

Michael Grismore, ’07

John Longacre

Jason Prout, ’96

Kristin Wallace, ’09

Whitney Hall, ’09

Tony LoPresto, ’01

Cheryl Ramey

Jenny Waller, ’08

Leslie Hamilton, ’96

John MacDonald, ’80

George Ramey, ’67

Renda Wallis, ’81

Debra Harrington, ’90

Kirby Marino, ’09

Katie Rathkey, ’01

Laura Welsh-Strack, ’07

Deron Harrington, ’91

Michelle Martin, ’89

Movva Reddy, ’75

Elizabeth Wetz, ’02

Julie Harris, ’81

Ron Martin, ’91

Ashley Rhea, ’06

Taber Wetz, ’01

David Harrison, ’88

Tyler Maxwell, ’09

Andria Ripley, ’03

Bill White, ’83

Jan Harrison, ’87

Jimmy McGraw, ’56

Daniel Ripley, ’03

Melissa White, ’82

John Harrison, ’99

Ryan McKaskle, ’00

Linzie Roberts, ’10

Jeremy Wier, ’01

Stephanie Harrison

Carolyn McLemore

Bret Robertson, ’08

Nicole Wier, ’00

Brian Hauser, ’10

David McLemore, ’72

Lindsay Ross, ’08

Sean Wilcox, ’93

Whitney Hauser, ’09

Emily Meade, ’03

Rick Safi

Kara Wilkerson, ’06

Tammy Heatherly Gibbs, ’80

Robert Meade, ’02

Jacob Salamat, ’02

Paige Williams, ’07

DeeAnne Henry, ’93

Fayssal Merheb, ’04

Susan Salamat, ’04

Emily Winters, ’03

Glen Henry, ’92

Michael Millard, ’93

Megan Schroeder, ’09

Jed Winters, ’01

Andrea Hesser, ’10

Amber Moffett, ’99

Chris Schultz, ’81

Krystal Winters, ’03

Glen Hicks, ’07

Melissa Moran, ’06

Stephen Schultz, ’02

Rachel Winton, ’09

Christopher Hill, ’96

Michael Moran, ’05

Tracy Schulz

Ken Wintory, ’69

Jennifer Hill

Rebecca Morton, ’72

Dennis Schulze, ’76

Robert Wittrock, ’10

Jenilee Hinkle, ’05

Dick Muehleisen, ’73

Sheryl Schulze, ’76

Glenda Woodburn, ’77

Candace Hobbs, ’04

Susan Muehleisen, ’73

Anne Sharp, ’08

Ron Woodburn, ’74

Derk Holder, ’96

Ruby Murphy, ’89

Kara Sheets, ’98

Gary Wright, ’74

William Holder, ’69

Tina Neel, ’79

Leslie Smith, ’08

Bridgette Young, ’95

Bill Hubbard, ’52

Kellie Newell, ’86

Tyler Smith, ’07

Larry Young, ’79

Lindsay Huggins, ’02

David Nicholson, ’78

Lyndee Songer, ’04

Tara Zaloudek, ’03

Janna Jackson

Jessica Nicholson

Jeremy Souders, ’96

Elaine Zeighami, ’67

Kevin Jackson, ’89

Terri Nickel, ’94

Lee Sparks, ’92

Hayley Zimmerman, ’10

Christian Jaehrling, ’93

Sanjith Nithiananthan, ’09

Brandon Steele, ’09



Cleveland County Going Orange The OSU Alumni Association Chapters program is expanding once again, and this time the orange is going into the heart of the crimson and cream. OSU alumni are working together to start a chapter in Oklahoma’s Cleveland County, home of the University of Oklahoma, and boost the display of Cowboy pride in the land of the Sooners. The chapter began with an idea from Richard Melot and Lynne McElroy, OSU alumni and Cleveland County residents, who started the orange ball rolling. “We didn’t see any reason why we shouldn’t assemble here with the number of people who have interests and ties to OSU,” McElroy says. Melot contacted the Alumni Association to see what it would take to start a chapter in the area.

After some initial discussions, the first organizational meeting was held in December. Cleveland County consists of a number of cities and towns, including Moore, Norman, Noble and Lexington. “I don’t think being near OU makes it harder to draw alumni,” McElroy says. “The church I attend has at least 20 people who are OSU graduates, and I feel certain of their devotion.” OSU alumni in the Cleveland County area are excited about the new chapter. They agree the alumni living in the county have an instantaneous bond. “I hardly ever see any orange around here,” says Buddy Behrens, a 1972 political science graduate from Norman. “I stop people when I see them wearing

orange in the restaurants and say, ‘I’m glad to see orange in all this red.’” More than 4,500 OSU alumni call Cleveland County home, making it potentially one of the biggest chapters for the Alumni Association. “This could be a pretty robust group,” Behrens says. Jennifer Postlethwaite, a 2005 nutritional sciences graduate, says living in Norman is a lot different from Stillwater. “Stillwater is like home with all the orange,” Postlethwaite says. “It’s nice to have a piece of home here down in Sooner Country.” To learn more about the new Cleveland County OSU Alumni Chapter, visit or email

Oklahoma City Metro Chapter The Oklahoma City Metro Chapter won a Gold Award for Pistol Pete’s Birthday Party held on Oct. 10, 2010. The OSU alumni chapter was recognized during the Council for Advancement and Support of Education’s District IV conference in the Alumni Program, Project or Special Events category. “It’s nice to get credit for all the hard work the board and the members put in,” says chapter President Chris Goldsworthy. Pistol Pete’s Birthday Party is a family event held every October at the Oklahoma City Zoo in conjunction with the zoo’s pumpkin drive. Attendance to the zoo is free for those who bring a pumpkin larger than the size of their head. Last year, 1,600 pumpkins were donated. The purpose of the Pistol Pete’s Birthday Party event is threefold, says Brenda Martin, a chapter committee member for the event. It promotes OSU to prospective students, encourages graduates and fans to become Alumni Association members, and fosters interest in the Legacy program. “We thought we had a good event, but it’s good to know someone else thinks the same,” Martin says. “It makes you realize all your hard work has paid off.” October’s Pistol Pete Birthday Party was the fourth year for the event but the first year it’s won such an award, Martin says.


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Brad Robison, a member of the planning committee, says the idea for the event started five years ago when chapter members wanted to organize something geared toward children in the OSU Legacy program and their families. At the time, most chapter events focused on raising scholarship money for students from central Oklahoma. Conveniently, the Oklahoma City Zoo’s “Haunt the Zoo” event was a perfect fit. Typically, the annual event averages 3,000 attendees, but last October’s attendance brought 4,200 people to the zoo, Martin says. Besides free admission, children received birthday cake and tokens for zoo rides and got to have their pictures taken with Pete. The event continues to grow each year, Goldsworthy says, thanks to additional marketing by the OSU Alumni Association. “It’s just a fun day to go out to the zoo and celebrate OSU.”

Texas Panhandle Chapter Vice President Cassi Rush, left, and President Marc Wilson, third from left, present baskets of unique Canadian County items to guest speakers Boone Pickens and OSU President Burns Hargis.

The Texas Panhandle Chapter The Texas Panhandle Chapter welcomed two special guests to its quarterly meeting in February, OSU President Burns Hargis and national energy leader Boone Pickens. Both OSU alumni presented the nearly 100 people in attendance with an update on OSU’s fundraising efforts, scholarships and a new initiative to recruit more out-of-state students — the McKnight Scholarship program. The high-end event was held at the IV Lodge and Vineyards in Canadian, Texas. Chapter Vice President Cassi Rash says the chapter decided to host the meeting on the east side of the Panhandle because many alumni live in that area. “This was by far the best attendance we have had since our initial event two years ago,” Rash says. “I definitely think our speakers had something to do with it.” Pickens told the crowd about the Pickens Plan, the nation’s energy crisis and the importance of encouraging students from Texas to attend OSU. He also spoke about his vision for the OSU’s future, both academically and athletically. “We felt very fortunate to have both Mr. Pickens and President Hargis in attendance as guest speakers. We realize they have very demanding schedules and numerous groups that vie for their time, ” Rash says.

Hargis also spoke about the McKnight Scholarship, which provides $5,000 to qualified out-of-state students their first two years at OSU as well as an out-of-state tuition waiver for the remainder of their education at OSU. The McKnight Scholarship is designed to assist students during their entire education at OSU, says Kyle Wray, associate vice president of enrollment management and marketing. It is named for Ross and Billie McKnight, co-chairs of the Branding Success campaign, who contributed $15 million to help OSU recruit students from north Texas and the panhandle. Pickens also helped fund the scholarship program with the McKnights. “We want to attract the best and brightest to OSU with this scholarship,” says Rash, OSU undergraduate admissions counselor for west Texas and the Texas panhandle. “It’s going to make OSU a lot more competitive with Texas schools.” The scholarship is awarded to students based on a combination of

grades, leadership, ACT scores and community involvement. The plan is to present 50 scholarships for the 20112012 school year, Wray says. Although the scholarship is targeted toward students in the Texas panhandle, any out-of-state student can apply. Marc Wilson, president of the Texas Panhandle Chapter, says the McKnight scholarship honors students for their leadership and involvement in school and everyday activities. “This scholarship will benefit OSU by recruiting students of high character who are already providing leadership to their community,” he says. Wray and the Texas Panhandle Chapter officers say recruiting Texans to OSU will be enhanced through the scholarship created by the McKnights and Pickens. “You hear a lot about alumni who want to get involved with scholarships and recruitment, but the McKnights have actually done it with this program,” Wray says. “On behalf of OSU, thank you to Ross and Billie McKnight, Boone Pickens and President Hargis for making the scholarship program happen.” For more information about the McKnight Scholarship program, contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at 405-744-5358.

s t o r i e s by S t e p h an i e K . Tay l o r




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Opening windows to a larger world KOSU director reflects on Turkey’s political and journalistic challenges

KOSU Director Kelly Burley visits with Fatos Gurkan, a member of Turkey’s parliament, during a visit to the Turkish capital in March. Burley traveled with a group of Oklahoma media invited to Turkey by the Alliance of Interfaith Dialog to meet with politicians, journalists and educators.

It was 11 o’clock on a Sunday night, and I was exhausted from a 15-hour flight to Istanbul, Turkey. Still, I was too excited to sleep in anticipation of what would become an incredible week of immersion in Turkish culture. As part of a delegation of Oklahoma media invited by the Oklahoma Alliance of Interfaith Dialog, I had the opportunity to visit with Turkish politicians, journalists and educators in late March. My participation was made possible in part by the OSU School of International Studies. Thanks to David Henneberry and his team, I had the opportunity of a lifetime to experience the incredible warmth and hospitality of the Turkish people while learning about the challenges and opportunities they face. One of the things I will take away from my visit is just how much pressure this country is under right now. There are 22 nations within 1,000 kilometers of Turkey’s capital, Ankara, and the eyes of the region are bound to be on this unique place where Eastern culture and Western democracy seem to thrive. Egyptians and Tunisians are certainly looking to their northern neighbor for inspiration as they begin charting their new futures. Hopefully, Libyans will also have that opportunity, although their path to change is being charted through a much longer and more traumatic course, and the outcome is uncertain. The Turks know there is a lot at stake — the stability and prosperity of their region — but they seem willing to accept the responsibility that comes with leading the way.

Listen to KOSU anytime, anywhere, through live audio streams at In central Oklahoma tune your radio dial to 91.7 FM or in northeastern Oklahoma to 107.5 FM.


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The state-run television station is in the midst of a major organizational overhaul to position itself as a leading voice, not only in Turkey, but the region, in countering what management says is the negative stereotypes of Islam perpetrated by the Al-Jazeera network in its coverage of Osama Bin Laden and al-Qaeda. The newspaper, Zaman, or Time, agrees that Turkey is poised be a leader in the region, but says the country must still convince its people that the decades-long cycle of political coups and corruption is behind them. The Turkish parliament, meanwhile, is working to gain constituents’ trust. The ruling party wants Turkey to be the dominant economic power in the region and one of the most powerful in the world within the next 10 years. There’s plenty of disagreement, however, among the major opposition parties about how to do that. From this vantage point, the Turkish people are well equipped to handle the pressure of leadership. Those we met — ­ journalists, politicians, educators and local residents — are smart, talented and spirited. They are acutely aware of their history. And they are motivated to keep history from repeating itself once again.

Kelly Burley KOSU Executive Director

Thank You! Remember the Ten Run Steering Committee would like to thank the runners, sponsors and volunteers for their continued support of the race. With your help, we will honor and celebrate the lives of the Ten for years to come. Kendall Durfey

Bjorn Fahlstrom

Nathan Fleming

Will Hancock

Pat Noyes

Brian Luinstra

Denver Mills

Daniel Lawson

Bill Tietgens (Teegins)

Jared Weiberg

Save the Date

6th Annual Remember The Ten Run April 21, 2012 5k/10k/1 Mile Fun Run Stillwater, OK Register online at

It Pays to be a Member! Members have access to discounts on products and services across the United States and can save hundreds of dollars a year. Here’s one way you can save.

Couples 4-night Bahamas Cruise Tickets for the boat $100 Savings/day Hotel Room at launch $20 Savings/day 4-night couples getaway totals more than $400 savings for the trip.

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*Savings as of March 1, 2011. Subject to change without notice.

C l a s s n o t e s

’30s J.D. Edmonson, ’34, an sci, says, “The class of 1934 is still with you.” J.D. turned 101 on Nov. 12.

’50s Nesmer Calzolari, ’50, ind eng and mgmt, and his wife, Jean, have watched their daughter and two sons graduate from OSU. They are also happy their grandson has been accepted to the university. Don L. Taggart, ’50, CFE, an husb, retired from judging livestock at the Oklahoma State Fair but continues to judge at state fairs across the United States. He recently judged livestock exhibits at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer, Alaska. Don lives in Oklahoma City. Shirley A. Smith, ’53, pol sci, recently moved from Oklahoma City to Stillwater to be closer to her daughter Debbie Fimple, ’81, an sci, ’83, DVM. Paul Weatherford, ’54, bus pub admin, worked in insurance for 38 years. He retired in 1992 and moved from Elk Grove Village, Ill., to Fountain Hills, Ariz., where he lived until his wife passed away in 2006. Paul, 82, moved to Bixby, Okla., in 2007. Doylerie Brown Johnson, ’55, nutri sci, is married to Ivan L. Johnson. She says she is proud of OSU, and “Go Big Orange.” J. Paul McIntosh, ’57, M.S., nat sci, and his wife, Eleanor, received a Philanthropist of the Year award and celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary last year. J. Paul also completed his fourth trip to China last October and was a program speaker for the 2010 Vietnam Veteran Reunion in Nebraska. Arnold Drumm, ’58, A.S., diesel tech, recently retired after working 12 years as a gold mine owner. Douglas Peacock, ’58, ag econ, is enjoying retirement. He practiced law in Phoenix, Ariz., until March 1995. Then he cruised his boat from the East Coast to the Bahamas until September 1997. He now lives on North Hutchinson Island in Florida.

Jack Warner, ’58, math, ’60, M.S., retired in January 2005 as a math professor at the University of Oklahoma. His son, Jay, graduated from OSU in 1984 with a degree in architecture, and his grandson, Calvin, is a freshman at OSU.

’60s Allen Reding, ’60, HRAD, and his wife, Sydney, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary Feb. 18, 2010. They have four children and 10 grandchildren. Wendell Shaffer, ’60, gen bus, retired from working at Conoco and the United States Air Force. He sings barbershop with the Overland Stage Chorus. Arthur Rickets, ’61, mgmt, and his wife, Kay, have gone to all of OSU’s home and Texas football games for the last two years. Arthur owns Crop Insurance in Marietta and works for Sullivan Insurance Agency. Roger Moore, ’63, nat sci, a retired Mannford high school principal, and his wife, Ann, a retired pre-school and kindergarten teacher live near Keystone Lake. Their son, Joel, and his wife, Stacy, have three future “rootin’ tootin’” OSU Cowboys: Tyler, Jake and Max. Jack ReVelle, ’65, M.S., indus eng, ’70, Ph.D., recently published his 20 th book, The Home Builder’s Guide to Continuous Improvement: Schedule, Quality, Customer Satisfaction, Cost, and Safety. He is currently working with the American Society for Quality on an online series of more than 50 webcasts describing essential quality tools. His article, “Making the Connection,” was published last year by the journal Quality Progress and was translated into Chinese for re-publication by the Chinese Association for Quality. Other articles, “Communicating Lean with Customers” and “Which Comes First: Quality, Safety, or Costs,” were also published last year by the journal Industrial Engineering. Lawrence Thompson, ’65, ind eng and mgmt, and his wife, Margaret Ann, are enjoying life. Lawrence says he rides his bicycle about 4,000 miles every year, and Margaret Ann plans to retire from her career soon. They

have four grandchildren, all between the ages of 3 and 12. John Baker, ’66, civil eng, retired to his home in Oklahoma City last year after a 43-year career in civil engineering, which began in 1967. He and his wife, Carol, fill their time with hobbies and traveling to visit their five children, nine grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Betty Briggs, life member, is the alumni director at Tyler Junior College in Tyler, Texas, which has an annual enrollment of about 12,000 students and an alumni base of more than 100,000. She enjoys planning alumni trips, chapter gatherings and homecoming reunions. Betty attended OSU from 1965 until 1967 and finished her education at Tyler Junior College and the University of Texas. Andrea Arstingstall, ’69, elem ed, welcomed a new OSU legacy into the world on Oct. 11. Axel joins his siblings Hannah, 12, Seth, 10, and Zane, 4. Robert Hawkins, ’69, an sci, was president of the OSU rodeo team during his senior year of college. He hopes the team will continue to thrive. Sherry Tipps, ’69, sec ed, ’68, M.S., curr/instr, and Alan Tipps, ’69, sec ed, ’90, M.S. curr/instr, now have five grandchildren. Their daughter, Angie, married Gannon Mendez last November.

’70s John W. DeWitt, ’70, gen bus, has been a special judge for more than 20 years in McCurtain County. His wife, Sheila Graham DeWitt, ’73, HEECS, is a retired educator who works part time as a math consultant. Both are looking forward to becoming grandparents this spring. Mary Hazeldine, ’71, sec ed, ’73, M.A., Engl, says she is finally “stepping back” into faculty at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Ga., this year after serving as an associate dean for quite some time. Joe Hornick, ’71, acct, welcomed a grandson into the world last June. He also became a managing officer for Smith Carney and Company in Oklahoma City last year.

James Voelkers, ’71, chem eng, and his wife have a daughter who completed her early childhood education degree while doing her final practice teaching in Paris, France. Their son began attending OSU last fall and hopes to receive a degree from the Spears School of Business. Linda Anthony, ’72, spch, says, “Coach Gundy and his staff have given OSU fans the most exciting, most enjoyable and most inspiring football season those of us living have ever seen,” and that she is proud of the football players’ hard work, discipline and teamwork. Alan R. Baker, ’73, econ, retired from his planning and research supervisor position for the City of Tampa’s Land Development Coordination Office after 35 years. Alan is married to Kathleen C. Baker. N. Andy Cole, ’73, M.S., an nutri, ’75, Ph.D., was named 2010 Senior Scientist of the Year for the Southern Plains Area of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. Andy is a research animal scientist and acting research leader at the USDA-ARS-Conservation and Production Research Laboratory in Bushland, Texas. He was named a Graduate of Distinction in the Department of Agricultural Sciences at West Texas A&M University in 2007 and an Advanced Degree Graduate of Distinction in the Department of Animal Science at OSU in 2008. In 2005 he received the Animal Management Research Award from the American Society of Animal Science and in 2009 was named a Research Fellow of the society. In 2010 he was also a member of an air quality research team that received the Distinguished Research in Agriculture Award from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Innovative Technology Award from the U.S. Federal Laboratory Consortium. Norman Rockwell, ’73, fire prot and saf tech, and his wife, Deborah, live in Chattanooga, Tenn. Norman was promoted to corporate protection program manager of Tennessee Valley Authority last year. Mark Sellers, ’73, ag econ, will serve as president of the Oklahoma Elks Association until April. His wife, Debbie, has a new position with Magellan Midstream Partners in Cushing.



Heritage Hall Rediscovered funds inspire students to engineer a showcase Finding money you forgot you had would make anybody excited — especially when it’s $25,000. That’s the amount Stuart Randel, chemical engineering senior and College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology Student Council treasurer, found in an OSU Foundation account last fall. Randel first heard about plans for a future CEAT heritage hall and the funds set aside for it when he became involved with the CEAT Student Council as a freshman. Three years later, after hearing no more about the project, he began to wonder what happened to it. “I contacted the OSU Foundation and was surprised to learn we had $25,000 set aside for a heritage hall or any other project we deemed worthy,” Randel says. Students competed in a design competition this spring for a chance to consult on This year, the engineering student council is an engineering heritage hall to be located in the Advanced Technology Research determined to take on the project and make the Center. hall’s development a reality while preventing the “We’re also doing this to recognize past student accomplishidea from falling between the cracks a second time. ments,” he says. “We want to show donors what we’re capable of. “Personally, I am very excited to see the heritage hall become It’s a way to show that CEAT students are helping out, and it’s a a reality,” says Christy Bennett, a mechanical and aerospace way for us to get our name out, too.” engineering junior and council member. “There have been multiple The heritage hall will honor alumni and faculty members, attempts to begin the hall before, but this time there is real effort showcase the history behind CEAT’s programs, recognize Hall and enthusiasm behind it.” of Fame awardees and Lohmann Medal recipients and display Bennett is also a member of the heritage hall committee student projects, such as the concrete canoe, the Design/Build/Fly created by the CEAT Student Council last semester to oversee planes and ChemE cars, among the project. So far, other awards and memorabilia. the student council is Mitchell says the heritage responsible for funding hall committee is asking alumni the entire project. — Eddie Martin to donate “anything related to “We want the hall to OSU engineering,” including be designed by students, pictures, old text books and scientific instruments. constructed under student supervision and maintained by This spring, undergraduate and graduate engineering particistudents,” says Eddie Martin, a chemical engineering sophomore pated in a design competition. Proposals submitted to the heritage and committee member. hall committee had to fit within a $20,000 budget. The winning Development is expected to begin this summer in the west proposal will be sent to Dean Karl Reid for approval. wing of the Advanced Technology Research Center and progress in The winner will receive an iPad as well as an opportunity to phases into the east wing, says Taylor Mitchell, a mechanical and work as a design consultant with the heritage hall committee. aerospace engineering senior, CEAT Student Council vice presiBennett believes the heritage hall will become a great success dent of publications and member of the heritage hall committee. and a place of long-lasting honor. No completion date is set yet, but Mitchell expects construc“I look forward to visiting the college as an alumna and tion to take several years. The hall will also allow for continuous seeing the heritage hall as it grows and changes beyond my time at future updates. Oklahoma State.” Mitchell says recruiting engineering students to OSU is the To donate items to the heritage hall, contact Kevin Moore, primary motivation for creating the heritage hall. Eventually, he director of CEAT Student Services, by emailing kevin.moore@ says it will become the starting point of engineering college tours for prospective high school students.

“We want the hall to be designed by students, constructed under student supervision and maintained by students.”

Melissa Oxford


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John R. Beltz, ’74, gen bus, retired from the oil and gas industry in 2007 but recently re-entered the field as director of marketing for Newpark Drilling Fluids to help launch a new product. John is married to Kathy S. Beltz, ’73, spec ed.

director of security at Kaiser Permanente Hospital Foundation. He and his wife, Vicki, have a son, Andrew, and daughter, Corinne.


Classnotes information. But we still want to hear about your

Donald Coble, ’75, HPER, says he really enjoyed OSU’s last football season and that his granddaughter, Aubrey, loves Bullet and Pistol Pete. He welcomed a new grandson and future Cowboy fan into the family last December.

Mark Courtright, ’80, acct, is a controller for ClimateCraft Inc. in Oklahoma City. He and his wife, Kathy, who also attended OSU, have three sons. Their oldest son, Kale Courtright, ’08, mktg, is a fourth generation OSU graduate. He married Savanna Osborn, ’09, sec ed, in June 2008. Mark and Kathy’s middle son, Keith, is a chemical engineering senior at OSU. He married Michelle, an elementary education major senior, last July. Both will graduate in May. Mark and Kathy’s youngest son, Kye, is an engineering freshman at OSU.

honors and other news, and help you share your information

Jacqulyn McComas, ’76, FRCD, says she decided last year was the time to give back to the College of Human Environmental Science, and she wants to thank Boone Pickens for matching her donation. She also encourages others to give back what they can. Janibeth (Bell) Gallagher, ’77, DHM, and her husband, Gary Gallagher, ’76 pol sci, ’95, M.S., curr/instr, recently moved to Edmond to work with their daughter, Danielle. Their youngest son, Stephen, graduated from OSU in May 2010 and married Annie last July. Floyd Kirk, ’78, phys ed, has been the superintendent at Dover Public Schools for the last eight years. He and his wife, Mary, have four children and seven grandchildren. Floyd graduated from Perry High School in 1973 and says he is proud to be a Perry Maroon and an OSU Cowboy. Kristi Stricklin, ’78, sec ed, met her husband, John Wayne Stricklin, 35 years ago while they attended OSU. They celebrated their 34th wedding anniversary Dec. 26. Linda Ferrell Bahan, ’79, Frnch, ’89, M.S., curr/instr, retired from teaching high school-level French and coaching tennis after 31 years. She says she plans to spend more time with her family while working part time teaching tennis. Linda is married to Charles Bahan. Cathy Dillard, ’79, DHM, ’83, appl beh st, has a son, Derrick, who is following in his father’s footsteps by serving his second year as Pistol Pete. Randy Easterling, ’79, acct, spent 28 years as a special agent for the FBI before retiring in 2007. Randy is now

Up d a t e C l a s s n o t e s O n L i n e The OSU Alumni Association’s new renewal statements for annual members no longer include a form asking for

Charley Stewart, ’80, microbiol, has three children. Katy, 25, is a registered nurse and has been married for about a year. Elly, 19, studies photography at OSU in Okmulgee. Nikky, 17, is a senior at Jenks High School. Robin Fisher, ’81, spec ed, became a national board certified teacher last year. Mark Stinchcomb, ’81, mech ag, walked his daughter, Callie Anne, down the aisle on June 4, 2009, when she married Sam McNickle. Mark’s wife, Robin, teaches third grade at Richmond Elementary School in Stillwater. Their pet, Chloe, is the main attraction at their home now. Victoria Deerman, ’82, comp sci, became executive director for the Foundation for Lovejoy schools in Texas last August. Her husband, Jim, works for Raytheon. Their oldest son is a computer science major at the University of Texas, and their youngest son is a junior at Lovejoy High School. Brent D. Bowen, ’83, pol sci, ’89, Ed.D., and Erin E. Brown married May 21, 2010, in Lafayette, Ind. Both are professors at Purdue University. Mike Craddock, ’83, org admin, is a managing broker at HotelBrokerOne in Tulsa. He was president of the Oklahoma Association of Realtors in 2009 and a member of the board of directors for the National Association of Realtors in 2010. He is a com-

promotions, new family members, retirement activities, with the OSU family. Classnotes may be submitted online at, on the Alumni Association Facebook page at or on your webenabled cell phone at Classnotes are printed in STATE magazine, OrangeBytes and online as a benefit for Alumni Association members.

mercial committee member for the association again this year. Rick Anderson, ’84, acct, ’94, MBA, started a new job at Washburn University in Kansas last November. Martin Bullock, ’84, sec ed, has five generations of OSU graduates in his family, as well as nine grandchildren. Thomas Dailey, ’85, acct, is the market business manager for Cumulus Media Inc. in Dallas, Texas. Rhesa Funk, ’85, journ, expanded her promotional products business to a full-service advertising agency. Steve Harrison, ’86, journ, is vice president of investor relations for Lennox International Inc. He lives in Plano, Texas, with his daughter, Karissa, 6, and son, Preston, 4. Monica Kirksey Freeland, ’87, ag econ, was recently elected mayor of Tillar, Ark. Monica is married to Thad, and their oldest son is a freshman at OSU. Mikel Janitz, ’87, A.S., mech des tech, and his wife, Dina, moved from Jonesboro, Ark., to Sapulpa in 2009. Mikel is an engineering manager for Muncie Power Products Inc. in Tulsa, and Dina is a teacher at Sapulpa Middle School. Chris J. Moses, ’87, mktg, is construction superintendent, sales representative and Energy Star coordinator for Ron James Designer Homes in Oklahoma City.

Gregory Dlabach, ’88, math, holds faculty appointments at several universities, and in 2008 he started CAMEO Performance Systems, an educational consulting practice. He received his doctorate in education in 2005 from the University of Arkansas. Mark McNitt, ’89, mktg, had a great time playing at the golf tournament hosted by the OSU Alumni Association’s Houston chapter.

’90s Linda Hale, ’90, elem ed, has been an elementary school teacher in her hometown of Hominy for 21 years. Her husband, Jim, is the assistant chief of police in Cleveland. Both of their daughters are OSU graduates and each gave them the gift of a grandchild last year. Don Schooler, ’90, pol sci, serves as general counsel with the Oklahoma Department of Labor as of January. John C. Harned, ’90, acct, ’91, M.S., recently became president and CEO of Epworth Retirement Community in Oklahoma City. John was previously the founding executive director of Tallgrass Creek, an Erickson retirement community in Overland Park, Kan. He was senior vice president of operations for RehabWorks for the eastern half of the United States and a partner with CPA and advisory firm Baird, Kurtz & Dobson before that. John is also on the board of directors for the Kansas Association of Homes and







Listen to audio excerpts of OSU alumni sharing their compelling life stories and college memories or read their interiew transcripts at

The RhyThm of Life Music and dance enhance the lives of students and teachers

M Myr-Lou Rollins Wade

Bill Thompson

yr-Lou Rollins Wade, Bill Thompson and Jim Lovell may not know each other, but they have something other than OSU in common — a love of music and dance. All three share their memories of rhythm – from teaching social dance to singing with the Student Entertainers to learning the jitterbug — in oral history interviews available online at the OSU Edmon Low Library. Rollins Wade recounts her 30-year career in which she taught everything from ballroom dancing in the old armory (now the Architecture Building) to bowling in the Student Union to a Creative Rhythms class for elementary teachers. Creativity was a key element in her work as she

choreographed dance programs and costumes. “I try to create dances that interpret a theme and was intent on trying to make it creative dance, not just movement for movement’s sake,” Rollins Wade says in her 2009 interview. Bill Thompson, a 1962 OSU graduate, says joining the Student Entertainers was a natural fit after being a member of his high school glee club. This singing group, led by Ashley Alexander, traveled around Oklahoma presenting concerts. Thompson, in his 2009 online interview, says his involvement with Student Entertainers led to an opportunity to tour with the U.S. Army Field Band for a couple of years, broadening his educational experiences.

Jim Lovell, a 1956 OSU graduate, was the first member of his family to attend college. A high school teacher encouraged him to give college a try and introduced him to people on campus who would play vital roles in his success. Equally important to Lovell’s adjustment to campus life was his discovery of the third floor dance hall in the Student Union, he says in his 2006 interview. “I learned to jitterbug. (Laughs) … I wrote back to my mother and I told her I was jitterbugging, and then I added at the bottom of it, ‘Mother, I did this because whenever you’re real happy, you do the Charleston.’” O

O-STATE Stories, a project of the Oklahoma Oral History Research Program at the Edmon Low Library chronicles the rich history, heritage and traditions of Oklahoma State University. Visit to “Search the Collection” by keyword, such as dance or music, and find additional interviews on the subject. You can also search by name of interviewee and by interview year. For information or to propose interviews, contact Mary Larson at 405-744-6588 or email

Jim Lovell


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Jerry Gill, ’67, hist, ’73, M.A., ’86, Ph.D., retired from OSU a second time in December as the most recent author of the O-STATE Stories for STATE magazine (prior to this issue), which was a part of his work for the Oklahoma Oral History Research Program. Jerry began work as an oral historian soon after his retirement from the presidency of the OSU Alumni Association in 2007, and he spent two and a half years enthusiastically helping the Oklahoma Oral History Research Program document the history of the OSU campus. The O-STATE Stories Project and its associated column will continue, covered by other members of the faculty and staff, but Jerry’s contributions to the project in its early years helped place it on a firm footing.

Services for the Aging. He received a master’s degree in theological studies from Ave Maria University in Florida and is a licensed nursing home administrator and certifi ed public accountant in Oklahoma. Susan McKenzie, ’91, math, says she couldn’t be happier that her daughter, Jessica, a high school senior, has decided to attend OSU in the fall. Melissa Cooper Addison, ’95, gen bus, loves her new job at Broken Arrow Public Schools. Melissa says that she and her husband, Joshua, enjoy attending the activities of their three children: Drake, 14, Daelyn, 13, and Sophie, 12. Shannon Walls, ’95, microbiol, welcomed her third daughter, Dhannen, into the world last fall. Her older sisters, Delaney, 7, and Devaney, 3, were especially excited. Troy Ray Wittrock, ’95, sec ed, is married to Sara Elizabeth Wittrock, ’95, FRCD. Sara completed her master’s degree in school counseling. Andrew Huss, ’96, physio, is expecting his third “little Poke” in March.

Andrea Boothe, ’04, psych, recently graduated from dental school at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and works as a dentist in Wichita, Kan. Jerad Lindsey, ’04, soc, welcomed a son into the family on Sept. 15. Jason Miller, ’04, MIS, and Karen Miller, ’05, fin, welcomed their daughter, Adelyn, into the world in April 2010. Jason is a design architect for Cerner Corporation. Nancy (Sproul) Aubel, ’05, MBA, married Dereck on June 3, 2010, in Evans, Ga. John Miller, ’05, bio sci, ’10, D.O., graduated from the OSU Center of Health Sciences in May 2010. He works as a family medicine resident at the OSU Medical Center in Tulsa. Stephanie Cooper, ’06, will graduate with a doctor’s degree in optometry in May. She married Michael, an attorney for SneedLangHerrold in Tulsa, last August.

Trent Mefford, ’97, an sci, and his wife, Dawn, celebrated 11 years of marriage last July. Trent continues to be the chief of staff of Frederick Memorial Hospital. They have two beautiful daughters, Tenley, 5, and Timber, 3. Amanda Riggs, ’99, mgmt info sys, lives in Texas but was thrilled to be back in Stillwater last season for Bedlam football. “The campus and the energy at OSU is amazing and refreshing,” she says.

’00s Johnny Lonsdale, ’01, fire prot and saf tech, welcomed his son, Lucian, into the family on July 8. Summer Patterson, ’01, elem ed, and her husband have two sons, Chandler, 5, and Chase, 4. Brianne Normandi, ’03, FRCD, gave birth to George Normandi IV on Sept. 7. Laura Travis, ’03, elem ed, and her husband, Chris, have a new addition to the family, Katherine, who was born last December. She joins her older brother, Tucker, who is nearly 4 years old.

Victoria Coonrod, ’07, ag ed, and her husband, Jess, were blessed with a beautiful baby girl, Bellanne, on Nov. 16. Sara Hooser, ’07, DHM, is working on her first bridal collection, which Altar Bridal will carry in Kansas City, Mo. Brian Ray, ’07, av sci, is in undergraduate pilot training. He recently graduated from officer training school and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force on July 20. Ebonie Hill-Williamson, ’08, journ, says her husband, who recently joined the Air Force, is not an OSU graduate but he represents OSU proudly in Colorado. Their son, who turned 2 years old last December, already loves OSU football. Jessie Wagner, ’08, acct, ’09, M.S., recently received the annual Elijah Watt Sells Award from the American Institute of Certifi ed Public Ac cou nta nts for obtaining the 10 highest cumulative scores on all sections of the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination. Jessie was one of 93,000 who took the exam, which consists of four

parts and lasts about 14 hours. She now works in tax services at Ernst &Young LLP’s Tulsa offi ce. She also enjoys volunteering with Junior Achievement and LifeChurch of south Tulsa. Lance Day, ’09, fire prot and saf tech, who lives in Denver, Colo., welcomed William into the family on Aug. 10. Sarah Fiegener, ’09, biosys eng, married her husband, Andy, in front of Old Central last year and says it was the most beautiful and appropriate setting. Heidi Slaughter, ’09, ag com, gave birth to her first child, Haley, on Nov. 30.

In Memory Kathryn Greenwood, ’43, fash merch, ’44, M.S., ’72, Ed.D., died at age 88 on Nov. 13, 2010, in Fort Collins, Colo. Her family moved to Stillwater from Hartford, Ark., in 1938 so the children could attend Oklahoma A&M. Kathryn taught at OSU from 1955 until 1985 and established and directed the Center for Apparel Marketing and Merchandising. She also wrote a textbook, Fashion Innovation and Marketing, in 1973 and presented a paper at the World Textile Conference in Como, Italy, in 1987. Kathryn is survived by six children and 12 grandchildren. Arlene M. (Claybaker) Kirman, ’43, home econ, died Feb. 16, 2010. Although Arlene lived most of her adult life in New Jersey, she remained supportive of OSU and enjoyed attending class reunions. After graduating from OSU, she attended Vanderbilt University on an American Dietetic Association fellowship. During her career, she worked as a hospital dietitian, a home economist and as a high school and college educator. She also served one year as president of the New Jersey Home Economics Association. She spent the last several years of retirement in California, where she was active in the American Association of University Women and helped raise scholarship funds for students. Lee Knox, ’48, geol, ’49, M.S., died Feb. 15, 2010, in Denton, Texas. Lee was born in Claremore, Okla., on July 4, 1922. He and June Knox,



’46, home life, were married 63 years and together have three children, six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Jay Wayne Gibson, ’49, sec ed, died June 18, 2010. His wife, Mary Jo (Hansford) Gibson, also attended OSU, and they were married 59 years before his death. Their granddaughter, Jessica (Ibarra) Press, ’99, elem ed, teaches first grade in San Antonio, Texas, and is the mother of their three great-grandchildren, Jolie, Jax and Jacey.

and opportunities. His greatest professional accomplishment was becoming president and CEO of Woods Corporation. Roy loved OSU athletics and supported a range of endeavors, including renovations of GallagherIba Arena and Boone Pickens Stadium and scholarships for studentathletes. Roy loved spending time with his family, traveling to Colorado and other vacation spots, biking, ranching and being a part of Crossings Community Church in Oklahoma City. He survived by his wife, Norma, and his children, Ron and Kim.

Doyle S. Bivins, ’52, ind eng, died Sept. 13, 2010. He is survived by his wife, Nelda Bivins, ’52, HEECS, two daughters and four grandchildren. Doyle served in the U.S. Army and attended OSU on the GI Bill. He was first employed by Humble Oil and Refining in Texas before working as a petroleum engineer for Miller and Lents Ltd. in Houston, Texas. He traveled around the world as part of his job and lived in Rome, Italy, for two years. After retirement, he and Nelda moved to Walters, Okla., for several years before moving to Wichita Falls, Texas. Doyle helped establish a scholarship fund with the Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation to enable students to attend college.

Robert Brent Westerman, ’82, mech ag/ag eng, ’88, M.S., agron, ’91, Ph.D., crop sci, died Nov. 22, 2010. In 2002 he became the research scientist and coordinator of research operations in the plant and soil sciences department. Three years later Robert became the senior director of a new field research and service unit created by the Oklahoma Agricultural Experiment Station.

Victor Dane Hildinger, ’54, forestry, died in Plano, Texas, on Oct. 7, 2010. He is survived by his wife, Mary Bulard Hildinger, ’56, HEECS.

James Christopher “Chris” Stiegler, ’98, hort/land arch, ’01, M.S., hort, and his wife, Jennifer (Goodpasture) Stiegler, ’00, FRCD, ’02, MBA, both died in a car accident on Christmas Eve, 2010, near Thornton, Texas, while traveling to Dallas to visit family. Their daughter, Emily, who was born on April 27, 2010, survived. Chris grew up in Stillwater and received many honors and was active in numerous groups and clubs while he attended OSU, including the President’s Leadership Council and the Sigma Chi fraternity. He received his doctorate from the University of Arkansas in May 2010 and accepted a teaching and research position in turfgrass ecology and management at Texas A&M last August. Jennifer was a member of the Pi Beta Phi sorority, HES Student Council and HES Ambassadors while at OSU. She worked as a manager at Bath and Body Works. A fund for Emily’s education and life has been established. It is the Emily Grace Stiegler Fund, Citizens State Bank, 4611 W. 6th St., Stillwater, Okla., 74074.

John C. Cisna,’60, mtkg, died Nov. 4, 2010, at age 73. He married Gloria A. Geis, ’60, elem ed, in November 1959, and they celebrated their 50 th wedding anniversary in 2009. John and Gloria moved to Springfield, Ill., soon after they graduated, and John trained harness racing horses at a stable he set up at the Illinois State Fairgrounds. He was elected to the U.S. Trotting Association board of directors in 1968 and became its longest-serving director. He has a daughter, Stephanie, a son, Brian, and five grandchildren. Roy Townsdin, ’61, acct, died Dec. 3, 2010, after a courageous battle with cancer. After graduating from OSU, Roy earned his CPA in 1963. During his career, he had varied business interests, from owning and operating successful long-term businesses to real estate investments. He enjoyed the challenge of seeking new experiences


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Martha Reed, ’44, art, died Dec. 28, 2010, at her home in Talpa, N.M., at age 88. A talented artist in her own right, Martha was the daughter of Jane and Doel Reed, an internationally known artist who established OSU’s art department in the 1920s. Martha became a Southwest fashion designer and is credited with popularizing Navajo broomstick skirts paired with traditional velvet or cotton blouses. For more than 38 years, she owned and operated the renowned “Martha of Taos” shop.
Her distinctive clothing designs, hand sewn by local Navajo seamstresses, earned many honors, and two of her famous skirts were worn to functions at the White House. After her parents’ deaths, Martha bequeathed two adobe homes and her father’s art studio to OSU for use as a teaching facility. The result was the founding of the “Doel Reed Center for the Arts” as a tribute to her father. Memorial gifts may be made to the Doel Reed Center for the Arts, OSU Foundation, P.O. Box 1749, Stillwater, Okla., 74076-1749 or by going online at Hoover Page Fisher, ’50, music ed, ’54, M.S., died April 28, 2011. After graduation from OSU, Hoover earned a Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma and taught high school in Bartlesville, Guymon and Durant, Okla., and in Borger, Texas. In 1965, he joined the OSU faculty, where he devoted 22 years to the music department and served in a number of leadership positions for the Oklahoma Choir Directors Association, Oklahoma Music Educators Association, Music Educators National Convention and Oklahoma School Music News. He was named OSU Outstanding Music Department Graduate, was listed in Who’s Who in the South and Southwest and as an Outstanding Educator, and was named to the OMEA Hall of Fame. He is survived by his wife, Loretta, three sons and their wives, six grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Carla (Sweet) Chlouber, ’60, humanities, ’65, M.A., Engl, died April 27, 2011, at age 71. She held a variety of jobs throughout her life that gave her

an outlet for her love of writing and history. From 1978 to 2000, she worked for OSU’s Agricultural Communications Department as a writer, editor and managing editor. After retiring, she and her husband, Dale, developed the Washington Irving Trail Museum in Stillwater. She also published a biography of cowboy music in Oklahoma called “The Oklahoma Cowboy Band,” and most recently worked with her daughter Belinda on a children’s book, Speedy Jumper and the Dark Forest, to be published this year. She is survived by her husband, three children and seven grandchildren. Eloise Bollenbach Bellmon, wife of former Oklahoma governor, U.S. senator, and OSU alumnus Henry Bellmon, died Feb. 6, 2011, at age 83 in Kingfisher, Okla. Eloise and her first husband, Irvin Bollenbach, were good friends of the Bellmons for many years. The Bollenbachs founded and expanded Kingfisher Airport in 1945. After Irvin’s death in 1997, Eloise became OSU’s Sigma Nu house mother from 1999 to 2002. During that time she and Bellmon, a widower, began dating and married in April 2002. Bellmon died in September 2009. Eloise is survived by two sons, Scott and Barry, as well as five grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, three step-daughters and four step-grandchildren. Sidney DeVere Brown, a former OSU faculty member, died at age 85 on Dec. 8, 2010, in Norman, Okla. Sidney was a professor of history at OSU from 1952 to 1971 before moving to Norman to join the University of Oklahoma history faculty. He retired in 1995. Sidney, an expert in 19th-century Japanese history, was one of the first people to write about the history of the Meiji Restoration (which marked the end of the Tokugawa Shogunate and the move to modernize Japanese government and society). He was also the leading American expert on two of the movement’s leaders, Kido Takayoshi and Okubo Toshimichi.

Now in development, Fiddler’s Hill provides unmatched security and exclusivity for families at all stages of life. Set against a scenic backdrop of gently rolling hills and lush landscaping, the 10-acre development features 29 home sites built by the area’s premier custom home builders who meet rigorous quality standards. Conveniently located in southwest Stillwater, Fiddler’s Hill is less than a 10-minute drive to area shopping, restaurants, medical facilities and the Oklahoma State University campus. The addition is close to Sangre Ridge Elementary and Stillwater Middle Schools. S Country Club Rd

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Ancient and Beneficent Orders Early Oklahoma educators organize the Red Red Roses and Blue Blue Violets

The story is told of three Oklahoma school superintendents who tried to form an organization in 1917 that would imbue new teachers spreading across the fledgling state with a sense of unity and “feelings of brotherly love.”


he three superintendents

were affiliated with the Southeastern State Normal College in Durant, Okla., which provided four years of high school and two years of college training for teachers. Hopes for the new organization slowly faded, however, due to insufficient revenues, until an extraordinary event occurred — an old and affluent teacher died, leaving his estate to an unnamed organization such as the one they were attempting to form. The donor’s only stipulation was to remain anonymous to outsiders and be referred to only as “the Old Man.”


S PRING 2 0 1 1

Almost immediately the organization of the three men began to blossom. RED ALLIANCE

Five souls gathered in southeastern Oklahoma in early summer 1919. Their leader, Henry G. Bennett, president of the Durant college, had recently completed his master’s degree. He wanted to bring together in a relaxed setting others also interested in supporting education, specifically rural education, in Oklahoma. Members were to address each other by first name only as part of the “leveling

process among school men, where the backwoods teacher at the forks of the creek could meet with the college president and city superintendent of schools on equal terms.” At this first gathering, T.T. Montgomery, W.G. Masterson, Mel A. Nash and W.P. Battenberg joined Bennett and formed The Ancient and Beneficent Order of the Red Red Rose. Bennett was known hereafter as the Exalted Grand Sire. Weekly meetings included initiations and banquets, and by the start of the academic year, membership grew to 30 in the Red Red Rose at Southeastern State College. Bennett was present for each initiation ceremony. Members attending the initiation would vote on the option to use either the “short form” or the “long form” for the new initiates, always voting for the long form to the disappointment, discomfort and dismay of the neophytes. “Neophytes should be duly equipped with the spirit of humility and ample

supply of courage and fortitude.” The entire group then shared a meal together where the new initiates would learn the Will of the Grand Old Man and the Grand High Exalted Secret. If the neophytes responded in a satisfactory manner, they were christened as full-fledge members of the Order. Chapters developed statewide within the first year. On Feb. 4, 1920, only eight months after the founding of the Red Red Rose, the sixth Oklahoma chapter held its first meeting and initiation at Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College in Stillwater. Neophytes included A&M President James W. Cantwell, Dean Herbert Patterson and more than a dozen faculty members, including James Caldwell, Bohumil Makovsky, A. Frank Martin, E.W. Schuhmann, James Day and Noble Rockey. Hilton Ira Jones, head of the chemistry department, served as the first Grand Lord High Mokus; Charles Sanborn, entomology department head, replaced him the following year. The five previous chapters included the founding chapter in Durant, Northwestern Normal at Alva, University of Oklahoma, State Capital at Oklahoma City, and Chickasha. Within a short time, college presidents and deans across Oklahoma were initiated, as well as governors, legislators, school superintendents, college faculty and teachers across Oklahoma. All members of the Red Red Rose were male. The state teachers’ conference Feb. 19-21, 1920, in Oklahoma City served as the catalyst for the first state meeting representing all chapters. A constitution was published and included the three purposes for the Red Red Rose: 1. To furnish a meeting place where friendship may be encouraged, isolation eliminated, false dignity laid aside and where teachers may meet and eat with increasing pride. 2. To foster fraternal cooperation and the development of all agencies which shall be for the advancement and profit of the teacher. 3. To work for the professionalization of teaching and the improvement of public

schools and to relentlessly war against all forces opposed to these ends. BLUE BEGINNINGS

Membership in the Red Red Rose grew to 100 in the “Vale of Stillwater” during the first year, but some who wished to join, mostly faculty women and spouses, were prohibited. Undeterred by the exclusion, they formed their own ancient and beneficent order known as the Blue Blue Violets. The first chapter was established at Oklahoma A&M on Dec. 17, 1921,

Official Titles for the Ancient and Beneficent Order of the Red Red Rose Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Mokus Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Elucidator Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Interrogator Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Provider Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Expounder Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Keeper of Symbols Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Keeper Outer Wicket Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Keeper Inner Wicket Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Prodder Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Scribe Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Conductor Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Stimulator Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Organizer Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Assistant Organizer Exalted and/or Grand Lord High Editor of the Rose Leaf

when women gathered at the Home Economics building for initiation and a four-course meal. Mrs. J.B. Eskridge, wife of the new college president, was joined by Emma Bassler, Elizabeth Moorehardt, Mrs. W.H. Bishop and Agnes Berrigan as the first initiates. Their stated purpose was “to band together women teachers and to further the ideals of the teaching profession.” Their pin was a blue violet beside a torch, representing knowledge. Soon college administrators, faculty and spouses joined them, including Dean Mary Brogden, Dean Ella Nora Miller, Mabel Caldwell, Nora Talbot, Birdie Voorhies, Mrs. Hilton Jones and librarian Elsie Hand. The Blue Blue Violets quickly expanded. Only a month after their first meeting, they invited 26 women from four Oklahoma communities to join them in Stillwater. They were guests of the Red Red Rose, who drove them through campus and out to the college farm before returning them to the Home Economics building for a musicale. Following the first phase of initiation at 5:30, both organizations reunited for a banquet in the college cafeteria. The Red Red Roses presented the Blue Blue Violets with bouquets of roses, and the final phase of the initiation was completed in the Chemistry Building that evening. The following weekend another 25 to 30 women from five additional communities were Blue Blue Violet initiates in Stillwater. The Blue Blue Violets were officially accepted as the sister organization of the Red Red Rose. Both groups had unique officers, titles and initiations, yet they shared a common objective to support teachers and education across the state and nation. By Dav i d C. P e t e rs O S U S p e c i a l C o l l e c t i o ns & U n i v e rs i t y A r c h i v e s

Note: The author’s father was a member of the Red Red Rose but shared none of the secrets with his son, who wrote this article using only publicly available documents and news stories. The Will of the Old Man and the Grand High Exalted Secret remain safe and secure.


photo / Gary Lawson

Ann and Burns Hargis with students Devin Stanfield, Alex Gelmers, Sara Fevurly and Jeremy Bennett

Promoting Leadership OSU President Burns Hargis and First Cowgirl

will produce $50,000 per year in immediate

Ann Hargis do more than advocate for their

support, which will grow to $125,000 perpetu-

beloved university. They put their words

ally when matched by an estate gift from

into action.

T. Boone Pickens. The fund is an additional

The couple recently made a $1.5 million commitment to provide scholarships for incoming freshmen who can qualify for

boost to OSU’s effort to enhance opportunities for students who will lead our state, nation and world into a better tomorrow.

renewal by exhibiting leadership through

Thank you, President and Mrs. Hargis, for your

campus activities. The Hargises’ generosity

leadership and generosity.

STATE Magazine, Spring 2011  

STATE Magazine is the official magazine of Oklahoma State University.

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