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Oklahoma State University

OSU College of Arts and Sciences to induct three Hall of Fame honorees

Thu, September 21, 2017

The College of Arts and Sciences at Oklahoma State University will recognize three Hall of Fame honorees at a private banquet on Friday, Sept. 22 at the Wes Watkins Center.  They include Tom Daxon, the youngest individual to win statewide office in Oklahoma; Anita Hill, who is widely respected for her professional and civic contributions to civil rights issues, and Gaute Vik, executive chairman of the world’s largest telecom consultancy company.

In addition, the college will recognize four Rising Stars and 21 Distinguished Alumni among its 24 departments in ceremonies that will be broadcast live on OStateTV (www.ostate.tv) beginning at 8:15 CDT on Friday night.  

HALL OF FAME

Tom Daxon

B.A. Economics ’70, M.S. Geography ‘78

Daxon is a nationally recognized expert in state and local government finance, who recently retired. He ran for the newly reorganized state auditor and inspector position in 1978.  The state election board ruled Daxon ineligible twice due to age, but the Oklahoma Supreme Court unanimously reinstated his name on the ballot, and he became the youngest person to win statewide office in Oklahoma – and the only Republican elected to statewide office that year. Under his guidance, the office’s audits played a key role in exposing a number of county commissioners in what became the largest public corruption scandal in U.S. history. In 1994, Daxon served as Secretary of Finance and Revenue under Gov. Frank Keating, and also spent five months leading efforts to restore Orange County, California, to solvency in what was the largest public bankruptcy in the U.S. Daxon and his wife of 45 years, Linda, were the first couple ever married in the OSU Student Union. They have two sons.  

Anita Hill

B.S. Psychology ‘77

The youngest of 13 children from a farm in Oklahoma, Hill received her juris doctorate from Yale Law School in 1980.  She began her career at a private law practice in Washington, D.C.  There she also worked at the U.S. Education Department and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In 1989, Hill became the first African American to be tenured at the University of Oklahoma College of Law, where she taught contracts and commercial law. Currently working at Brandeis University, she teaches courses on gender, race, social policy and legal history. As counsel to Cohen Milstien, she advises on class action workplace discrimination cases. Hill is the recipient of numerous grants, honorary degrees and awards. Her professional and civic contributions include chairing the Human Rights Law Committee of the International Bar Association, and memberships on the Board of Governors of the Tufts Medical Center, the Board of Directors of the National Women’s Law Center, and the Boston Area Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights. 

Gaute Vik

Ph.D. Statistics ‘84

In 1982, Vik was awarded a fellowship from the Norwegian government to study statistics at OSU. He earned his doctorate in just two years and was inducted to the National Dean’s List.  In 1986, he was employed by Teleplan, a Norwegian telecom consultant company and was the head of business outside Norway. Starting with a handful of consultants and a small local staff in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, he expanded the business to the surrounding countries and succeeded in closing what was recognized as “the largest telecom consultancy contract in the world ever” (Aftenposten and Stavanger Aftenblad, Norwegian newspapers) in 1994. He continued to expand the activities to Southeast Asia, Europe and the U.S. The business was re-organized into a new company with Vik as CEO and was successfully listed on the London Stock Exchange (AIM) in 2008. He currently serves as the company’s executive chairman.

Vik is an eager hunter, angler and enjoys traveling challenges. He traveled through Sahara (1972) together with three friends in an old Volkswagen bus before the existence of any roads there, and he has been all over the Scandinavian waters with his boat.

RISING STARS

Hendratta Ali (Ph.D. Geology/Aqueous Geochemistry ’10)

Kimberly Geddie (B.S. Political Science, B.S. English ’09)

Matthew Stiner (B.A. Political Science ’07)

Wesley Young (B.A. Journalism and Broadcasting, Advertising and Public Relations ’10)

DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI

Alisa Ben (B.A. Broadcast Journalism ’01)

Jerry Burson (B.A. Theatre ’55)

Tony Cho (B.M. Music Performance ’98)

Barrett Cieutat (M.S. Geology ’92)

Emily Drennan (B.A. Spanish ’03)

Otto Duecker (B.A. Art Education ’70)

Bhaskar Dutta (Ph.D. Physics ’95)

Margaret Ewing (M.S. Zoology, Ph.D. Zoology ’61)

Bill Fournet (M.A. History ’95)

Kimberly Hays-Souter (B.A. Philosophy ’90)

Kay Oltmanns Headrick (B.S. Speech Pathology ’85)

Elizabeth Hood (M.S. Botany ’80)

Brian McDowell (B.S. Microbiology ‘98, D.O. ’03)

Fred Regnier (Ph.D. Chemistry ’66)

John Rice (B.S. Math ’54)

Geoffrey Simpson (B.S. Computer Science ’97)

Mike Sloniker (B.S. General Business ’67)

William Talley (B.S. Biological Sciences ’55)

Jane Thomas (B.A. Sociology ’75)

Neil Vandalsem (B.A. English ’91)

Vance Winningham (B.S. Pre-Law ’63)

For more information, including full biographies of all the Hall of Fame, Rising Star, and Distinguished Alumni inductees, visit: http://ashonors.okstate.edu/.