Academic installations and presidential words of advice highlighted Oklahoma Baptist University's official start of the 2008-09 academic year during Convocation Wednesday, Sept. 3, in the University's Raley Chapel.
More than 1,500 people attended the ceremony. OBU Interim President John W. Parrish offered students 11 tips to succeed at OBU which ranged from the practical-yet-humorous admonition to "attend class, it's the first rule of survival" to encouragement to communicate with faculty members, and be involved in church.
Three faculty members were installed to endowed academic positions during the 10 a.m. service. They include Dr. Rich Rudebock, named to the Robert L. and Sara Lou Cargill Chair of Business; Dr. W. Kyle Tresch, named to the Lloyd G. and Betty E. Minter Chair of Business; and Dr. Roger Hadley, named to the Frank W. and Pauline G. Patterson Professorship in Journalism. The OBU supporters who funded each of the endowed positions were present at the ceremony.
According to a university statement, endowed chairs and professorships - which assist with compensation - are awarded to select professors who are "outstanding teachers and who have demonstrated exceptional ability in their academic disciplines." The gift which provides an endowed academic position is invested in the University's permanent endowment fund, and the annual earnings are used to assist with compensation. OBU currently has 25 active endowed chairs and professorships.
Rudebock has taught at OBU since 2001. From 2004-08 he served as dean of OBU's Paul Dickinson School of Business. He returned to full-time teaching with the start of the 2008-09 academic year. A 23-year veteran instructor and former manager of instruction with Dale Carnegie Training Systems, Rudebock has nearly 30 years of business experience in sales, management and training. He earned a bachelor's degree from Kent State University, and master's and doctoral degrees from Texas Tech University.
The Cargill Chair of Business was established by Dr. Robert L. Cargill and his wife, Sara Lou, long-time supporters of OBU. Cargill graduated from OBU in 1951, and Mrs. Cargill is a member of OBU's Class of 1950. The Cargills reside in Fort Worth, Texas, where he serves as chairman of Cargill Associates Inc. He founded the privately owned international fundraising consulting firm in 1976. The Cargills have both served leadership roles in various OBU capital campaigns.
Tresch, a 1986 OBU graduate was named dean of the Paul Dickinson School of Business in August. He was a founding partner in the Tulsa-based law firm McQueen, Rains and Tresch, LLP. He previously served as senior counsel for CITGO Petroleum Corp. in Tulsa. He earned a juris doctorate from Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va.
The Minter Chair of Business was established by Dr. Lloyd G. Minter and his late wife, Betty. The couple's relationship with OBU has spanned more than 70 years. Minter, a 1940 OBU graduate, is retired senior vice president and general counsel of Phillips Petroleum Co. He has served five four-year terms on OBU's board of trustees, including three years as chairman. In addition to providing funds for the Minter chair, the couple established the Minter Lectureship in American Business Practice, which brings a noted business speaker to the OBU campus each academic year.
Hadley has taught all levels of telecommunication courses since joining the OBU faculty in 1985. In 2004, he received OBU's Distinguished Teaching Award. He has also received the Fred Tewell Outstanding Communication Educator Award from the Oklahoma Speech Theatre Communication Association. Hadley completed his bachelor's degree from Southeastern Oklahoma State University, and earned a master's degree and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Oklahoma.
The Frank W. and Pauline G. Patterson Professorship in Journalism was established by Dr. and Mrs. Burton Patterson of Southlake, Texas, in honor of Patterson's parents, who were pioneers in Baptist work with Spanish-speaking people groups. Dr. Frank Patterson, a 1928 OBU graduate, was director of the Baptist Spanish Publishing House in El Paso, Texas, for 33 years. His wife also served at the publishing house as editor of children's Sunday School materials. Dr. Burton Patterson, a 1956 OBU graduate, is a semi-retired entrepreneur, attorney, educator and musician. In 1995 he received the OBU Alumni Association's highest honor, the Alumni Achievement Award.