HIGH HONOR: OSU-Tulsa President Dr. Gary Trennepohl, left, is to be honored with the President Gary L. Trennepohl Chair in Leadership, which will be funded in part through proceeds from “A Stately Affair,??? a black-tie gala on May 20 at OSU-Tulsa. With Dr. Trennepohl at the recent Tulsa Press Club Headliners Dinner, which saluted Henry Bellmon at the Renaissance Tulsa Hotel, are U.S. Rep. John Sullivan, center, and Dr. Thomas W. Allen, former Vice President of the OSU Center for Health Sciences and Dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine.
GTR Newspapers photo
Oklahoma State University supporters have announced plans to the OSU-Tulsa Board of Trustees that they intend to honor President Gary Trennepohl by establishing an endowed chair in his name. The President Gary L. Trennepohl Chair in Leadership will be funded in part through proceeds from “A Stately Affair,” a black-tie gala on May 20th at OSU-Tulsa.
“A Stately Affair” is a new OSU-Tulsa fundraising initiative that will generate private funds for scholarships, community initiatives and program needs. With an emphasis on the creation of Trennepohl’s endowed chair, the theme for this year’s event is “The Best Chair in the House.”
Monty Butts, vice chairman of the OSU Foundation board of governors, said creating a presidential chair was the natural choice to honor Trennepohl and to support top priorities at the university for generations to come.
“President Trennepohl is a highly regarded educator and community leader who is deserving of this prestigious designation,” Monty Butts says. “His passion is creating opportunities for students to learn. We are pleased to salute President Trennepohl’s ongoing career contributions to education and his commitment to OSU and the city of Tulsa.”
Endowed chairs, which provide long-term funding for the university, are also one of the highest forms of honor and recognition that an administrator or faculty member can receive. The goal of the campaign is to raise $1 million in private funds, which will be eligible to be matched by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.
“While I am quite honored by this tribute, I’m even more excited about the dramatic impact the creation of this endowed chair will have on OSU-Tulsa’s endeavors,” Trennepohl says.
Trennepohl joined the leadership of the OSU system in 1995 as the Dean of the College of Business Administration, now known as the William S. Spears School of Business. In 1999, the Tulsa campus officially became part of the OSU System and President Trennepohl was selected as the first president of the university.
Under Trennepohl’s management, OSU-Tulsa’s enrollment continues to increase with more than 2,600 students today, up from 886 students in 1999. OSU-Tulsa has also successfully increased the number of resident faculty from five to 52, implemented the OSU Stillwater-Tulsa shuttle (BOB, the Big Orange Bus), renovated lab space, added one-stop career counseling and advising centers, constructed a wellness center for students and alumni, and created a TCC/OSU dual admission program.
Trennepohl also provided leadership to help secure more than $50 million to build the Helmerich Advanced Technology Research Center (ATRC). The Helmerich ATRC, made possible through Tulsa County’s Vision 2025 initiative, the state’s higher education bond issue and Walt and Peggy Helmerich of Tulsa, will focus on four strategic research and technology development thrusts that are part of the fabric and future of the Tulsa region—materials science and engineering, bio-based technologies, energy technologies and information and control technologies.
Aside from his numerous contributions to the academic field, Trennepohl is also an active leader in the community, serving on the boards for the Oklahoma Conference for Community and Justice, Leadership Oklahoma, Boy Scouts of America and BlueCross and BlueShield of Oklahoma. He also was appointed by the Mayor to the city’s Economic Development Commission.
“We’re all so impressed with the outstanding job that President Trennepohl is doing and we’re happy to establish this chair in his name to honor him and provide resources for future presidents of OSU-Tulsa,” Butts said. “The Trennepohl Chair will help strengthen the foundation for OSU-Tulsa’s future.”