The Oklahoma City University Alumni Association will honor seven outstanding alumni during Homecoming weekend festivities in November. The Distinguished Alumni awards dinner will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 1 in the University Center.
This year’s honorees are arts and sciences alumnus Gregory Potts, nursing alumna Norah Erb, dance and arts management alumna Jenny Lang, music alumna Joyce Eilers, business alumnus Scott Stone, religion alumnus Jim Gragg and law alumna Vicki Zemp Behenna
Tickets to the awards ceremony are $12 each and can be purchased by calling Cary Pirrong at (405) 208-5463 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Distinguished Alumni awards dinner is part of OCU’s Homecoming weekend Nov. 1-3. Other events include the 10th annual Race with the Stars at 8 a.m. Nov. 2, the alumni picnic at noon Nov. 2, men’s basketball game against Champion Baptist at 2 p.m. Nov. 2 and an all-campus worship service at 10:45 a.m. Nov. 3. For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit www.okcu.edu/alumni/homecoming.
Distinguished Alumni 2013 bios:
Gregory Potts, ’92 BA English, Petree College of Arts & Sciences
Gregory Potts is a licensed, clinical social worker currently working as a therapist on a team serving older adults at the Community Counseling Centers of Chicago, a community mental health agency. His social work career also includes five years as a case manager and supervisor at Chicago House, an agency serving individuals affected by homelessness, poverty and HIV/AIDS. Potts has a professional history in journalism and reporting which he gave up to provide for needs in the human services sector.
Norah “Noni” Erb, ’06 BS Nursing, Kramer School of Nursing
Erb manages the 35 employees of a hospital’s inpatient nursing care unit. About 20 of those staff members are nurses. She is responsible for policies and procedures as implemented by a nursing practice committee, and for the Diabetes Management program. Erb has traversed many steps in her professional career which includes becoming a licensed practical nurse, earning her associate and bachelor’s degrees in nursing, followed by her master’s degree in nursing from the Kramer School of Nursing. Her master’s track at OCU was in education.
Jennifer “Jenny” Lang, ’93 BS Dance Management, Ann Lacy School of American Dance and Arts Management
Jenny Lang has more than 20 years of diversified production experience in musical theatre, theatre, opera, television, concerts and live events that spans many venues and performance types. Currently, she is the production manager and stage management advisor for the University of Arizona’s School of Theatre, Film, and Television. Lang is a member of Actors’ Equity Association and the American Guild of Musical Artists.
Joyce Eilers, ’63 Bachelor of Music, Wanda L. Bass School of Music
Joyce Eilers (July 28, 1941 – June 2, 2009) is recognized as one of the top choral composers in the country with hundreds of compositions and arrangements in her catalog, best-selling methods for teaching sight-singing and for her mentoring work with young composers. After earning her degree from OCU, she received her master’s degree in music from the University of Oregon in 1967, where she specialized in music education. She taught in the Oklahoma public schools and in Oregon and Washington for 10 years at elementary and secondary levels and was an instructor at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Wash. She was a popular visiting lecturer and clinician, appearing before many state music education conventions.
Scott Stone, ’87 MBA, Meinders School of Business
Scott L. Stone is manager of Spartan Resources, LLC, an oil and gas exploration company owned by the Noble and Brown families. He has worked for the families for more than 32 years and serves as advisor and director for several other Noble/Brown oil and gas related entities. Stone graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in business administration and earned his MBA degree with honors from OCU. He is an active member of the American Association of Professional Landmen and Oklahoma Independent Petroleum . He serves as a teacher and mentor for the Energy Management programs at both OU and the University of Tulsa. Stone serves as an executive advisory board member to the Meinders School of Business. He is a member of Leadership Edmond Class XXIX and is a life member of the National Association of Eagle Scouts.
Rev. James P. Gragg, ’63 BA Religion, Wimberly School of Religion
Rev. James Gragg is a United Methodist Minister, now retired and living with his wife Elaine in northwest Oklahoma City. Gragg retired in 2006 after serving for six years as district superintendent of the South Oklahoma City District. He has served as pastor for many Oklahoma United Methodist parishes. Currently the Graggs are actively involved with Epworth United Methodist Church, a Reconciling Congregation, in Oklahoma City. He works with local non-profits to give voice to other citizens. Since retiring, the Graggs have enjoyed traveling and spending time with their family.
Vicki Zemp Behenna, ’84 Juris Doctor, OCU School of Law
Vicki Zemp Behenna has been a federal prosecutor with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Oklahoma for the past 25 years. She has extensive experience in prosecuting bank fraud, mail fraud, health care fraud and public corruption cases, and is currently the district’s health care coordinator. Behenna was selected to represent the government and her native Oklahoma in the prosecution of the Oklahoma City bombing case against Timothy James McVeigh. She is past president of the Oklahoma City Chapter of the Federal Bar Association and the Oklahoma Association of Women Lawyers, and is an adjunct professor at Oklahoma City University School of Law. She has received numerous awards and has been the featured speaker for many organizations in and outside of Oklahoma.