College of Education and Human Sciences adds 2 new members to Hall of Fame, honors 4 Outstanding Alumni
Thursday, May 5, 2022
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The Oklahoma State University College of Education and Human Sciences added two new
members to its Hall of Fame and honored four Outstanding Alumni Award recipients during
the 2022 Hall of Fame banquet on April 29 in the Nancy Randolph Davis building on
the Stillwater campus.
The highest honor bestowed by the college, the Hall of Fame Award is given in recognition of outstanding professional and personal achievements that
have brought honor and distinction to the college and to the university.
Charles Danley of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, earned a master’s degree in mental health counseling from OSU in 1991. For more than 25 years, he served as CEO of the Grand Lake Mental Health Center. His tireless, innovative work has revolutionized and made a lasting impact on mental health services across Oklahoma. Under Danley’s leadership, Grand Lake Mental Health grew from initially serving 1,500 people annually with 75 staff members in seven counties to serving 16,000 people with 950 staff members in 12 counties when he retired in 2020. The center also received an award from the National Council on Behavioral Health for Innovation in Technology for the use of tablets to serve law enforcement and people in need of crisis services, as well as leading a ground-breaking team to offer health services in ways never tried before.
Lindel Silvertooth of Glenwood Springs, Colorado, is a two-time OSU graduate with a 1960 bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a 1974 doctorate in education. Following six years as an elementary teacher, Silvertooth began an exemplary 43-year career as an elementary school principal in Kansas. He served as principal in Wichita Public Schools for 25 years. Among his accomplishments was leading Mueller Elementary School through integration in 1969. From 1993 until his retirement in 2008, he worked as principal at Derby Hills Elementary in Derby, Kansas. He is likely the longest-serving principal in Kansas history.
The Outstanding Alumni Award is given to those who demonstrate significant promise toward establishing a distinguished career and making impactful contributions to their profession and beyond.
Holly Barrón of Edmond, Oklahoma, earned a bachelor’s degree in human development and family science, option in child and family services, along with an OSU honors degree in 2005. She is the board president for the Keaton’s Kindness Foundation (The K Club), a nonprofit organization inspired by her son, Keaton, who passed away in May 2018 at the age of 8 following a five-and-half year battle with leukemia. While in the hospital, Keaton created The K Club with a simple mission that he himself modeled every day: "To be kind to others, be courageous, compassionate and caring." The K Club serves children battling cancer and their families through monthly Lego parties, funeral cost assistance and birthday parties. It has also raised more than $130,000 for local pediatric cancer research and over $355,000 for projects to renovate hospital and community spaces. The Barrón Family was chosen by Parents Magazine as America’s Kindest Family in 2021.
Dr. Danielle Olivier Jackson of Sugar Land, Texas, earned a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction at OSU in 2011. She currently serves as the principal of Kempner High School in Sugar Land. Prior to becoming an administrator, she was an English teacher, department chair, content specialist and instructional coach. Jackson also spent five years as an assistant or associate principal and was named the Region 4 assistant principal of the year and the Texas Assistant Principal of the Year for 2019-2020. Her dissertation focused on Black males in a predominately white suburban high school, exploring their perceptions of the school experience, which continues to inform her work in public education. Kempner High School is the most diverse high school in the state and Jackson is proud to serve there, working each day with students and staff to reach their full potential.
Desarae Witmer of Yukon, Oklahoma, is a 1993 OSU graduate with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and middle school science. She is currently assistant superintendent for Yukon Public Schools. Throughout a nearly 30-year career, Witmer has served as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal and district administrator. She spent 14 years as principal of Edmond’s Summit Middle School where was recognized as Oklahoma Middle Level Principal of the Year in 2009. From 2015-2017, Witmer worked at the Oklahoma State Department of Education as the executive director of the Office of School Support. In her current role with Yukon Public Schools, Witmer works to ensure students are well prepared for college and post-high school careers. She has served on the College of Education and Human Sciences Alumni Society board for five years.
Alane Zannotti of Stillwater graduated from OSU in 1994 with a bachelor’s degree in family relations and child development. Zannotti is the executive director for Extension Education and Community Development for Meridian Technology Center and has also served on Stillwater City Council since May 2015. She was appointed to vice mayor in April 2021 and again in February 2022. The Stillwater Chamber of Commerce presented Zannotti with its Leading Edge Award in recognition of her efforts to create Merry Main Street, a holiday pop-up retail and entertainment district in Stillwater. She is also a graduate of Leadership Stillwater and Leadership Oklahoma.