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Meinders School of Business Announces Five Hall of Honor Inductees

Oklahoma City University’s Meinders School of Business will honor five business leaders at the 25th annual Oklahoma Commerce & Industry Hall of Honor luncheon Nov. 3 at 11:30 a.m. at the Cox Business Services Center.

The 2011 inductees are Martha A. Burger, recipient of the Outstanding Achievement Award; Stan Clark, Entrepreneurial Spirit Award; H.E. Gene Rainbolt, Chairman’s Award; John Richels, President’s Award; and Lee Allan Smith, Paul Strasbaugh Lifetime Achievement Award.

Martha A. Burger is the senior vice president of human and corporate resources for Chesapeake Energy providing leadership for human resources, administrative services, facilities, communications, security and ethics and the company’s fitness center. 

Chesapeake has grown from 85 to approximately 10,800 employees during the 17 years of Burger’s association. She has been involved in developing compensation packages to attract, motivate and retain talent, and to help Chesapeake build a distinctive corporate culture promoting work-life balance and community service. Chesapeake has been recognized on Fortune magazine’s list of 100 Best Companies to Work For in the U.S. since 2008. 

Before joining Chesapeake, Burger served as vice president and controller and assistant treasurer at Hadson Corporation. She also held accounting positions at Phoenix Resources Companies, Inc. and Arthur Andersen & Co. 

Burger holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Central Oklahoma and in medical technology from Oklahoma State University. She received a master’s degree in business administration from Oklahoma City University in 1992.

Burger is the 2011 campaign chairwoman of the United Way of Central Oklahoma and is serving as vice chairwoman of the Education & Workforce Development Division for the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber. She is an at-large member of the MAPS 3 Citizen’s Advisory Board’s Oklahoma River subcommittee. She is a member of Oklahoma’s Turning Point State Health Plan committee and the Society for Human Resource Management. She serves on the board of trustees at Oklahoma City University, University of Central Oklahoma, Oklahoma City Boathouse Foundation and the Central Oklahoma Humane Society. She also serves as president of the Regional Food Bank Foundation.

Stan Clark is president of Stan Clark Companies, which owns Eskimo Joe’s and other restaurants in Stillwater.

A native of Tulsa, Clark graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1975 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He had $1,200 to his name when a friend suggested they should open a bar. Eskimo Joe’s opened on July 21, 1975.

After two years as partners, Clark bought his partner’s half interest to become the sole proprietor of Eskimo Joe’s. Mexico Joe’s opened in 1987. The company opened its first retail location, Joe’s Clothes World Headquarters, later that year.

In 1993, Gov. David Walters appointed Clark to the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation commission. He was reappointed by Gov. Frank Keating twice and served for nearly nine years under three governors.

Clark opened Joseppi’s Italian Kitchen in 2000 next to Mexico Joe’s. In 2002, he incorporated his latest operating company, Eskimo Joe’s Promotional Products Group.

One of the company’s legacies is its support of the Stillwater community, particularly the Stillwater Area United Way. Eskimo Joe’s has sponsored and hosted the Juke Joint Jog for more than 20 years and has been the title sponsor of the Three Amigo’s United Way Golf Classic for 16 years. It has sponsored or contributed to the Special Olympics of Oklahoma, the Stillwater Public Education Foundation and the Coaches vs. Cancer program.

H.E. Gene Rainbolt is chairman of BancFirst Corp. He was previously chairman and president of the Federal National Bank in Shawnee and chairman of United Community Corp.

Rainbolt was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 1999. He serves as a director for Sonic Corporation and as a partner for venture capital firms. He earned several honors from the University of Oklahoma including the Distinguished Service Award, Distinguished Graduate Society, the Arther Barto Adams Alumni Award and the Regents’ Alumni Award.

Rainbolt received the Bronze Star Medal and Army Commendation Medal. He served in the Army for four years after receiving a commission as a distinguished military graduate from OU. He was an artillery officer during the Korean War and an officer in the 981st Field Artillery Battalion.

John Richels was elected president and chief executive officer of Devon in June 2010 and joined the board of directors in 2007. Prior to joining Devon in 1998, Richels served as chief financial officer of Northstar Energy Corporation.

He is a graduate of York University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in economics. He also holds a law degree from the University of Windsor.

Richels serves as chairman of the Oklahoma City National Memorial, past president of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, a member of the Board of Trustees of Oklahoma City University and the Oklahoma City Boathouse Foundation. He is a director of the Independent Petroleum Association of America. 

Lee Allan Smith is chairman of Oklahoma Events, a full-service event production firm. 

Smith served as vice chairman of Ackerman McQueen and president of Oklahoma Centennial Sports, Inc., which was the local organizing committee for the U.S. Olympic Festival-'89 in Oklahoma.

In 1978, Smith joined KTVY Channel 4, an NBC affiliate, in Oklahoma City, where he served as president and general manager.  Before KTVY, he spent 22 years with Gaylord Broadcasting Company, where he started as a local salesman. He went on to become general manager and vice president of WKY Radio and assistant general manager of WKY-TV.

He served three years as chairman of the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce.  He is active on several boards of directors.  His civic and professional activities include past president board member of Allied Arts of Oklahoma, past president and current member of the Oklahoma Zoological Society, Inc., past member of the Oklahoma City Zoo Trust Board, and past chairman and current board member of the Oklahoma Heritage Association. He also served as past president and is a current member of the Last Frontier Council, Boy Scouts of America executive board, State Fair of Oklahoma board of directors, Kirkpatrick Center board of consultants and other boards. 

He helped establish the Oklahoma City Zoo's Aquaticus exhibit. He is also founder and producer of the Stars and Stripes Show and was the creator and developer of Stars and Stripes Park. Smith organized the Civic Center Music Hall grand re-opening, helped orchestrate the Dome dedication at the state capitol building and helped plan the State of Oklahoma's centennial celebration.

Smith attended Oklahoma City public schools and graduated from the University of Oklahoma. He was a first lieutenant and special service officer in the U.S. Air Force. He served in Austria, Germany and Libya.

Smith was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 1994. Other honors include the Oklahoma City Public School Foundation's annual Wall of Fame Humanitarian Award and induction into the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

Meinders School of Business interim Dean Steven Agee said this year’s Hall of Honor class should be commended for their leadership qualities.

“Each of these honorees has demonstrated admiral qualities with their contributions to business leadership and in helping with charitable causes,” Agee said. “We are proud to add them to our distinguished list of previous Hall of Honor inductees.”

In addition to recognizing members of the business community, the Oklahoma Commerce & Industry Hall of Honor luncheon benefits the Meinders School of Business scholarship program. Corporate sponsorships and individual tickets are available. For more information or to make a reservation, visit www.okcu.edu/business or contact Melissa Cory at (405) 208-5540 or mcory@okcu.edu.