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McKnight named 2014 CASNR Distinguished Alumni

The Oklahoma State University College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources recently named Ross McKnight a 2014 CASNR Distinguished Alumni.
McKnight named 2014 CASNR Distinguished Alumni

Billie and Ross McKnight

The Oklahoma State University College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources recently named Ross McKnight a 2014 CASNR Distinguished Alumni.

 

McKnight, Throckmorton, Texas, graduated from OSU with a bachelor’s degree in animal science in 1971.  While serving as president of the Student Government Association during his senior year, he met his wife, Billie. Since then, the McKnights have gone on to help thousands of current and future OSU students have the opportunity to pursue their own dreams.

 

“OSU is a great land-grant institution and alumni like Ross McKnight make a difference in the lives of our students and the people of Oklahoma,” said Tom Coon, vice president, dean and director of the Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. “Ross is a consummate leader, and through OSU’s Branding Success capital campaign, he and Billie have created a lasting legacy for OSU students today and for generations to come.”

 

In 2010, the McKnights were selected to chair OSU’s Branding Success campaign. McKnight helped shepherd the university and its many donors to record-setting achievement by meeting their $1 billion goal nearly two years ahead of schedule.

 

In addition, he oversees the McKnight Leader Scholars Program, which he and his wife established in 2010 with a $10 million gift. After qualifying for a 2:1 match from the Pickens Legacy Scholarship Match program, the impact of the gift will reach $30 million.

 

“The McKnights say OSU reinforced the values they learned growing up in rural communities: live with courage, work with pride, speak with honesty and keep promises,” said Clint Rusk, animal science department head. “They established this program to thank OSU for helping them develop into leaders, and to assist students from rural Texas communities attending OSU.”

 

McKnight was honored with the OSU Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award in 1996 and was named a Graduate of Distinction by the OSU Department of Animal Science in 1998. He also was selected to the OSU Alumni Hall of Fame in 2006 and served as Chairman of the OSU Foundation in 2002.

 

Both of the McKnights’ children also are OSU graduates.

 

Friends and colleagues are invited to attend a reception for McKnight on Oct. 24 at 3 p.m. in 124 Animal Science at OSU.

 

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Oklahoma State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, State and Local Governments Cooperating: The Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to all eligible persons regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, or status as a veteran, and is an equal opportunity employer.

 

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Email: sean.hubbard@okstate.edu