Officials at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College (NEO) announced Mr. Jerold Graham as the recipient of this year’s Outstanding Retired Faculty award. Mr. Graham will be formally honored during the Alumni Awards luncheon on Saturday, Oct. 5, at noon in the Calcagno Family Ballroom. All alumni and friends of the college are invited to attend. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children ages 12 and under, and may be purchased by contacting the NEO Development Foundation office at 918-540-6115. NEO’s “HOMEcoming on the Range” homecoming festivities will take place on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019.
Mr. Graham joined the NEO faculty in 1968 and spent the next two decades in the Fine Arts and Communications Department teaching theatre and constructing theatre sets. A Tulsa native, Graham earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of Tulsa before joining the Army in 1958. While in the military, Graham served as an administrator in Germany and worked with the American Youth Activities program for children of service members.
Following his military service, Graham spent the next 8 years at McLain High School as the head of the art department. Following the 1968 construction of the NEO Fine Arts Center, Graham and McLain stagecraft instructor Carl St. Clair joined the NEO Division of Communications. While at NEO, Graham recalls being tasked by Dramatics Instructor Don Nichols to construct a life-sized elephant for a production. Graham responded by creating an elephant with an articulating trunk that he would puppeteer from within.
Throughout his life, Graham has worked with Camp Chippewa in Cass Lake, Minnesota. Starting as a dishwasher in 1952, Graham has served as a counsellor, canoe guide, and mentor. In partnership with the camp, Graham owns a cabin on a ten-acre island in Canada and spends his summers woodcarving and volunteering with the camp. “It is truly an honor to recognize Mr. Jerold Graham as this year’s recipient of the outstanding retired faculty award,” said Jennifer Walker, executive director of the NEO Development Foundation. “Mr. Graham positively impacted the lives of countless students through the theatre department. He worked tirelessly in the classroom and on the stage and his efforts helped mold the program we have today.” For more information, contact Jordan Adams at Jordan.firstname.lastname@example.org.