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Alumni Spotlight: Jack Strain

By Annawynn Drury on 11/28/2017 Jack Strain —Courtesy photoJack Strain —Courtesy photo

It is a true pleasure to introduce Commissioner Jack Strain, Panhandle Native and Oklahoma Panhandle State University Alumni. Jack was born and raised in Goodwell and graduated from Goodwell High School in 1973. The majority of Jack’s family attended Panhandle State University and he said “there was no question where I would go in the fall.”

He graduated alongside the class of 1977 with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in accounting. Jack met his wife Gwen Weatherford Strain while attending college and they celebrated their marriage in May of 1977. Gwen still had a year of college left, so they spent their first year of marriage together in Married Student Housing on campus.

So much has changed since the late seventies and its special to see how Panhandle State has grown over the last few decades. Jack has been involved with much of this change, and last spring, he was recognized for his involvement when he was awarded the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education’s Regents Business Partnership Excellence Award. He shared with us that the award was in recognition of the work he did for the shooting facility located south of campus on the University Farm. Having been a life-long resident of Goodwell, “OPSU had always been a part of my life while growing up. As the County Commissioner here in District 3, my job allows me to give something back to the University in return for what I’ve received over the years. I believe this new shooting facility will be used by a great number of people in the area in addition to the benefits it will provide for the students of Panhandle State.”

Commissioner Strain has also helped with the dirt work for the Noble Activity Center, the Science and Agriculture Building, built a few roads by the baseball and softball fields, built parking lots on campus, worked on roads at the University Farm, and demolished and hauled off old buildings on campus. He has actively been involved in the progress of the campus in any way he can. “As far as contributing to the changes on campus and the farm, it goes back to being able to give something back to the University.”

Even after the dust has settled and the construction is complete, Jack and his wife Gwen often can be found on campus running the shot clock, game clock, and scoreboard for the Aggie Basketball Games.