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Manger Honored with ION Oklahoma’s NextGen Under 30 Award

October 3, 2016

Oklahoma Baptist University alumnus Austin Manger, field representative and policy advisor for U.S. Senator James Lankford, has been named a recipient of the “NextGen Under 30 Award.” The award is presented by ION Oklahoma, a digital and print news source covering the state. He will receive the award Friday, Nov. 18, at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City. Tickets are available at

The NextGen Award began six years ago to recognize individuals, all under the age of 30, in the state of Oklahoma. The honorees are selected to represent the next generation of innovative, creative and inspiring individuals who push the boundaries beyond their years in all areas: arts, entertainment, business, media, sports, technology and more. Originally, the honor focused mostly on the Oklahoma City metro area. However, as nominations have increased, the field has expanded to include more young professionals from all over the state.

Manger graduated from OBU with a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies in 2014. He is the second former communications student from OBU to win the NextGen award, following Marissa Lightsey, OBU director of career development, who won the award in 2015.

I was very surprised and humbled by the award,” Manger said. “The list of winners truly includes some of the brightest and most influential young leaders in Oklahoma, many of which I look up to, so to see my name included with theirs was quite an honor.”

Manger said OBU was instrumental in laying a solid foundation for his future. He has stayed involved with the university and is featured in a video on the College of Fine Arts page of the website.

“I can't adequately express the amount of gratitude I have for OBU and the support they have always shown for me,” he said. “OBU challenged me to never stop learning and to look at situations with a big-picture mentality, which has helped me progress in my field and provide the best value for the team I work with.”