Oklahoma Baptist University

OBU Alumni Honored at Harvest Dinner

Hundreds of Oklahoma Baptist University alumni and friends enjoyed fine dining, reacquainting themselves with old friends, visiting with new ones, and recognizing outstanding alumni and students at Oklahoma Baptist University's annual Harvest Dinner Friday night.

The feature event of OBU's first day of the 2000 Homecoming festivities included the presentation of Alumni Achievement Award to Michael Meece, the induction of Athletic Hall of Fame members James Hagan, Mark Elliston, and Pam Parnell Fink, and the presentation of the first-ever Graduate of the Last Decade Alum of the Year Award to Kathryn Mills Wilson.

Also introduced were the 18 seniors who are nominees for Harvest Court. The Harvest Court winners will be announced tonight.

Meece, a 1969 OBU graduate, has worked in music, drama and television productions throughout his career. The Branson, Mo., resident currently directs his award-winning musical, "The Promise," a presentation on the life of Jesus.

Meece, who holds a master of fine arts degree from Texas Christian University, set a Branson record in 1999 with four productions running simultaneously: "The American Kids Show," "Two From Galilee," "The Promise," and the musical revue "Lost in the Fifties."

He and his wife, the former Dee Anne Lee, a 1970 OBU graduate, have two grown sons.

Kay Vandevier Henry, OBU assistant vice president for development, presented the award to Meece.

Hagan, a 1967 OBU graduate, was an NAIA honorable mention All-American on OBU's 1965-66 national championship team. He also was named to a NAIA United States basketball team that toured the world in 1966.

Currently a teacher and coach at Carver Middle School in Springfield, Mo., Hagan has taught and coached at Shawnee High School, Owasso High School, Commerce High School, Seneca (Mo.) High School and Kickapoo High School in Springfield, Mo.

He and his wife, Nancy, a 1968 OBU graduate, have two grown children and three grandchildren.

R.B. Lynam, a 1966 OBU graduate, presented the award.

Elliston, a 1986 OBU graduate, won the NAIA decathlon in 1986 and is the only decathlon All-American in OBU track's proud history. He still holds the NAIA national decathlon high jump record.

He also earned All-America status in the indoor high jump in 1983 and in 1986.

Elliston is in his 13th year as head track coach at Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania. He completed his master's degree in physical education at The Citadel, where he served as an assistant with the track and cross-country programs for two years.

Elliston and his wife, Kelly, have two sons, Luke and Logan.

Dr. Norris Russell, OBU athletic director, presented the award to him.

Fink is one of only three Lady Bison softball players to earn NAIA All-America honors. She was All-District 9 for three years and holds the OBU record for season batting average. She is the program's all-time leader in assists and her career .342 batting average is third all-time at OBU, behind two players whom she coached.

She graduated from OBU in 1988 and earned a master's degree from East Central University in 1998.

Fink's 174 coaching wins in softball is an OBU record for women's athletics. She has taken the Lady Bison to a school record three consecutive regional tournaments.

She and her husband, Ray, a 1985 OBU graduate, have two children, Kelly and Collin.

Her father, George Parnell, presented the award.

Wilson, a 1992 OBU graduate and administration manager for Elizabeth Dole, has managed support for Mrs. Dole in her roles as American Red Cross president, as a candidate for the presidency of the United States, and now in Dole's personal office. She also served as a research and political coordinator for Mrs. Dole's husband in the 1996 Dole for President campaign.

She previously was marketing and public relations director at Shawnee Regional Hospital.

She and her husband, Chris, live in McLean, Va.

Linda Earnhardt Brown, a 1979 OBU graduate and vice president of operations at SRH, presented the award.

John Parrish, OBU executive vice president, served as master of ceremonies for the dinner. Robert Kellogg, vice president for the OBU Alumni Board of Directors, gave the invocation and Jim A. Ashworth, member of the OBU Alumni Board of Directors, led the singing of the alma mater.

Martin L. O'Gwyn, executive director of the OBU Alumni Association, and Julie Schock Dilbeck, president of the OBU Alumni Association, introduced the award winners.

OBU President Dr. Mark A. Brister delivered the remarks.

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