2022 Distinguished Goldbugs
August 28, 2022
The Alva Goldbug Education Foundation announces the honorees for the 2022 Distinguished Goldbugs celebration.
In its seventh year, the event coincides with Goldbug football homecoming on Friday, Sept. 2, and includes a luncheon at Act I Theatre at 11:30 a.m. and introductions during halftime of the football game. Tickets are available for luncheon at Alva Schools Central Office, 418 Flynn or Holder Drug, 513 Barnes. For more information call Lizabeth Richey at 580-327-7360.
Trudy Wheeler — Education (Class of 1975)
My husband is Dr. Charles Barrett and I have three adult stepchildren. We have six grandchildren. We hosted two international students who are like children to us and we have a Silky Terrier named Lexie.
I'm a 1979 graduate of Northwestern Oklahoma State University with a Speech and Theatre Education major and an English minor. I earned a Master of Fine Arts in Drama in 1982 at Trinity University (San Antonio) and The Dallas Theater Center. Post-graduate work was done at Boston University.
My lifelong learning journey has taken me from Oklahoma to Texas and finally Kentucky. My focus has always been on theatre education. I have taught every level of the learning process, from second grade to graduate students. My background in speech and theatre activities at Alva High School and NWOSU gave me the confidence and skills to also become a public speaking coach working with business professionals. I have always had a desire to coach and mentor students, especially young women. I have utilized my teaching skills as a regional collegiate director for Delta Zeta Sorority, where I trained collegiate sorority members in Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Tennessee. Mentoring and teaching continued through the Miss Kentucky Scholarship Competition as a pageant director and now as a member of the State Board of Miss Kentucky. I currently utilize my teaching skills in ENCORE, a division of Leadership Louisville, working on small teams of professionals who train and assist non-profit organizations in board development, membership, and strategic plans.
The Kentucky Country Day Middle School Drama Society won five national awards under my direction, two from The Educational Theatre Association and three from The American Association for Theatre in Education. I was the recipient of the 2005 Lin Wright Special Recognition Award by the American Alliance for Theatre in Education Association, as well as the recipient of the Kentucky Country Day Alumni Endowed Teaching Chair 2001-2003.
I taught my students to give back to the communities in which they live. Inspiring my theatre students to utilize their theatre and performance skills for others is another way of using my educational skills. Many of my awards are based in philanthropic work: NWOSU Outstanding Humanitarian Award, 2006; Miss Kentucky Volunteer of the Year Award, 2017; The Greater Louisville Area Panhellenic Outstanding Alumnae Award, 2020.
I learned to be a confident young woman growing up in Alva. That confidence came from being given the opportunity to participate in so many activities. Respect for all our hard work was important. The sense of respect for my work, my colleagues' work and the pride of a strong finished product came from my roots in Alva. I will never forget growing up in Oklahoma and having my feet firmly planted on red dirt while looking west to a beautiful sunset. We had room to grow, and the vast open spaces gave our dreams enough room to take wings.
Jason Paris—The Arts (Class of 1993)
A 1993 graduate of Alva High School, Jason Paris is an award winning educator, playwright, and director. He holds a Master's Degree in Directing from New York University and a Bachelor's Degree in English Education from NWOSU. He is the founding director of Pavement Ends Studios, an independent theatre company that has produced shows in New York and, most recently, in Red River, New Mexico.
As a playwright, Paris won New York City's 2017 Midtown International Theatre Festival with his play “Locker Room Talk” and has had several works produced in New York City and regionally. As an educator, he sits on the OSSAA Speech/Theatre Advisory Committee, and has directed six state championship one-act plays. Last year, he was named the OSSAA/NFH S Oklahoma Speech/Theatre Teacher of the Year. He is a past recipient of the Oklahoma Alliance for Arts Education's Outstanding Drama Teacher Award, the West Oklahoma NSDA Charlene Burton Coaching Award, the OSSAA 3A Coach of the Year Award, and the OSTCA Young Speech Educator of the Year Award.
Paris teaches Fine and Performing Arts classes at Cherokee High School. He has two incredible nieces and two outstanding nephews; and he was recently adopted by a stray cat, which is itself now available for adoption.
David Landreth—Business (Class of 1974)
David L. Landreth served as executive vice president and chief commercial officer of publicly traded CVR Energy (NYSE: CVI). He was responsible for the crude oil and feed-stock supply and product marketing departments, trading and risk management, refinery economic optimization and planning groups, and business development, asset evaluations, and acquisitions. As an executive, he served as a member of the Disclosure, Risk, Credit, and IT committees. He also served on the board of Midway Pipeline LLC.
Landreth has 39 years of refining and petrochemical experience at the refinery and corporate levels. Thirty-one of those years have been in the commercial segment of the business with a focus on profit generation, asset valuations, mergers and acquisitions, investment analysis, capital utilization and renewable energy. He has been involved with three public (NYSE) offerings, refinery and other facility evaluations and acquisitions, company integrations, and various other financial transactions and arrangements. He previously held positions of increasing responsibility at Coastal Corporation, El Paso Merchant Energy, and Holly Corporation.
Landreth has extensive knowledge in the optimization of refinery and petrochemical plant commercial operations. He has widespread experience and insights across the hydrocarbon value chain, including logistics and transportation, crude oil and feedstock valuations, processing, distribution, marketing, and trading and is also experienced in financial and commercial acquisition analysis of refining and other assets. In his 16 years at CVR Energy he was part of the team that transformed a single refining and nitrogen fertilizer plant controlled by private equity into a multi refinery, multi fertilizer plant company in two publicly traded entities. Landreth is a graduate of Northwestern Oklahoma State University with a BS in Chemistry. He retired in 2021.
Lauren Heaton—Athletics (Class of 2009)
A 2012 graduate of Oklahoma State University in strategic communications with a minor in marketing, Lauren Heaton is finishing a Master of Business Administration from London Business School and Finance with a focus in global marketing management.
After graduation from OSU, she worked for Advertising Agency Firehouse in Dallas, Texas. In the summer of 2013, she won the title of Miss Rodeo Oklahoma 2014. The following year saw her travel across Oklahoma and other states promoting the sport of rodeo, the State of Oklahoma, its legacy, and the western way of life. In December 2014, she competed at the Miss Rodeo America Pageant in Las Vegas, Nevada, in conjunction with the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo and become our state's first Miss Rodeo America. The following year Heaton traveled to most of the 50 states as well as Canada, Australia and New Zealand promoting the United States' western legacy on an international level. She has traveled to 38 countries since first going abroad at age 16 with Janet Jakubek. After finishing her reign, Heaton moved to Kansas City and worked in strategic marketing for advertising and marketing agency EAG. 2017 saw a move to London, England, where she currently resides and became the Global Marketing Manager at Ed-Tech business, Avado. She is now at another Ed-Tech business – Circus Street – as VP of global marketing.
Heaton will move back to the U.S. this fall to continue the U.S. growth plans for her current company. She will be moving to Colorado and hopes to start her own marketing agency someday, focusing on supporting small businesses with their marketing and sales goals.
Growing up in Alva and graduating from AHS gave her essential experiences that impacted potential life achievements. One was the desire to be part of a community of people that care about each other as much as Alva's community does. Heaton said it takes a feeling of security and support to take risks, and Alva always provided both. Attending a small school allowed a much wider variety of activities and sports than kids in Oklahoma City or Tulsa schools, which then provided a wider variety of skill sets that translated well onto college and job applications. Heaton believes that growing up on a farm establishes a level of work ethic not found in any other lifestyle.
Alva's teachers made such an impact on Heaton. A few include Janet Jakubek for inspiring Heaton's passion for travel, Judi Shirley for nurturing a love for reading and storytelling, and Ramona Cummings for providing a great outlet to channel her personality, passion for dancing, and love of musicals.
Scott Case was born in Waynoka and attended Alva High School before transferring to Edmond Memorial High School after his sophomore season. As a junior, he was a safety and helped his team reach the Class 4A state finals. As a senior, he was moved to running back where he received 1st team All-State honors.
Case enrolled at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M college in Miami, Oklahoma, playing free safety as a freshman, while posting five interceptions and contributing to an unbeaten season and a national junior college championship. As a sophomore, he appeared in nine games, registering 60 tackles, four interceptions, 12 passes defensed and received NJCAA All American honors. He also returned punts (19.5-yards average) and kickoffs (15-yards average). He scored three touchdowns (two on punt returns). During his two years the school posted a 19-1 record.
He then transferred to the University of Oklahoma. He was named the starting cornerback, registering 56 tackles, two interceptions, and eight passes defensed. As a senior, he was switched to free safety and tied a school single-season Oklahoma record for interceptions (eight). He was named 1st team all Big 8 and All American.
In 2011 he was inducted into the Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College Athletics Hall of Fame. He was selected by the Atlanta Falcons in the second round (32nd overall) of the 1984 NFL draft. He was also selected by the Oklahoma Outlaws in the 1984 USFL draft. In 1988, he was selected to play in the Pro Bowl after recording 65 tackles and leading the league with 10 interceptions, also a franchise record.
During his 11-year career with the Falcons, Case finished as one of the Top 3 of all-time leaders in career tackles and career interceptions (30), led defensive backs in career sacks (7.5) and with the third-most games played by a defender in franchise history. Case was named a member on the All Time Falcons Team.
Scott signed with the Dallas Cowboys on Aug. 24, 1995, reuniting him with his college coach Barry Switzer. He finished his career as part of the Superbowl XXX winning team, garnering Superbowl MVP runner up.
He now lives in Buford, Georgia, with his wife, Connie. They have five children: Kelsey, Kyler, Kody, Kallie, and Kenzie Grace, and five grandchildren. He is owner of Pride Utility Construction, a natural gas pipeline company located in Gainesville, Georgia.
In his off time, Case enjoys hunting, riding his Harley and chasing grandkids.
Jackie Phelps Duncan—Professional (Class of 1970)
Jacqueline Phelps Duncan is a 1970 graduate of Alva High School and was honored to deliver the 1993 commencement address. During high school she as a member of the National Honor Society and the Oklahoma Honor Society. She was co-editor of the “Scarab” (school newspaper), active in Science Club and Spanish Club, and sang with the Stardusters.
Jackie obtained teaching certificates in mathematics and English from Northwestern Oklahoma State University and received a juris doctorate from the College of Law at the University of Oklahoma.
Judge Jacqueline Phelps Duncan served as a Judge of the District Court from 1985 to 2009. During her career, she also served as a prosecutor, teacher, poverty lawyer and private attorney. She served many years on the Oklahoma Judicial Conference executive board, including two consecutive years as president. She was also a member of the board of directors of the Oklahoma Trial Judges Association. Also, she was honored by the governor for three years of volunteer work writing opinions for the Court of Criminal Appeals Emergency Appellate Panel.
In areas affecting families and children, Judge Duncan helped train mediators for family law cases with the Alternative Dispute Resolution Office of the Supreme Court since 1996 and helped begin a Parent-Teen Mediation Project in Custer County. She was instrumental in starting a cooperative parenting class for divorcing parents and requiring their attendance. She helped establish a Graduated Sanctions Program in the area of juvenile delinquency. Judge Duncan hosted a Youth Summit in May 2000 for the Weatherford Alternative School, focusing on decision-making and communication skills.
Judge Duncan was adjunct faculty at the first Oklahoma Judicial Education Academy at the Nigh Institute of State Government ad the University of Central Oklahoma. She presented twice at the New Judges Academies sponsored by the Oklahoma Supreme Court and helped with the OU College of Law Trial Advocacy School in 1999 and 2000.
In 1992, she was appointed to the Governor's Commission on the Status of Women and was a presenter at the 1993 Oklahoma Women's Summit. She was an ex-officio member of the Oklahoma League of Women Voters Judicial Study Committee, which helped compile A Resource Guide to Oklahoma Courts released in 1994.
Judge Duncan is a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma Class IV and has held office on various state and local boards, including American Heart Association, Kiwanis International, American Association of University Women, Western Plains Library System, and Women's Foundation of Oklahoma.
John Brothers—Philanthropy (Class of 1977)
I'm a member of the Alva High School class of '77 (Greatest Ever) and a 1982 graduate of the University of Oklahoma in Aviation. I'm married to Debbie Brothers. I have two daughters: Kelsie is 34 and Tiffany was 37 when she left us to live in Heaven. Eli is our 5-year-old lab.
I like most things that can be done outside: mountain biking, fishing, hiking, surfing, snow boarding, scuba diving, traveling abroad, and traveling domestically by motor home. Family and friends are usually part of our adventures. A good glass of wine and a story is a perfect place to start.
I've been a pilot for American Airlines since 1986. I have flown: B-727, B-757, B-767, B-777, B-787, MD-80, MD-11. I served as a Check Airman & Aircrew Program Designee on the MD-80, B-777, and B-787. It was a big deal to be chosen to be initial cadre on the B-787 for AA. We were tasked with designing the program, writing the flight procedures, building the training program, and coordinating with the FAA for the certification of the Dreamliner at AA.
Our church is a place where you can find us. It gives us joy to help with the worship service. We are pleased to see our finances meet the needs for those who need it the most. God and I work together every day.
It's been an honor to serve our town of Copper Canyon in various capacities. I've served on City Council, Board of Adjustments, Water Board, and Planning & Zoning Commission. I also got to mow the town right of ways for 25 years. (I wasn't elected to that position.)
I've worked with Pilots for Kids for most of my career. In 2001 my buddy John Elsey and I came up with the idea of running a golf tournament to help fund the DFW chapter of PFK. We put that plan into action and in the last 20 years have raised over $1,500,000 for the hospitalized children in the DFW metroplex. Our model is being used for 11 more chapters across the US.
My daughter Tiffany was diagnosed with ALS in 2017. It's a horrible disease that compels one to take actions to fight it. We have partnered with American Airlines, Answer ALS, Steve Gleason, MDA and numerous others to raise funds for research and create awareness about this awful disease. American Airlines raised $5,000,000 for Answer ALS. Steve Gleason started Answer ALS to figure out and battle ALS. MDA provides wonderful support to those afflicted with this life stealing disease.
My friends, many from Alva, have graciously given over $200,000 for Tiffany's support and to fight ALS.
I am humbled to be honored by my hometown of Alva, Oklahoma.
Leigh Ann Brunsteter Gaddis—Humanitarian (Class of 1976)
Leigh Gaddis is a Gaddis Premier Wealth Advisor with 27 years of industry experience. She was a co-founder of Gaddis & Gaddis Wealth Management (GGWM), which merged with Premier Investment Advisors, becoming Gaddis Premier Wealth Advisors in June of 2022.
In her capacity as a wealth advisor, Gaddis has guided a diverse and multi-generational range of clients achieve their financial goals. As an entrepreneur, she was also instrumental in the growth and expansion of GGWM from its beginning in 1995. In addition to her client work and business development activity, Gaddis measures her professional success by what she gives back to her community.
At the state level, Gaddis serves as chairwoman of the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission, which provides advisory, administrative and policy decisions for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC). She was appointed to the commission in 2014 and she is the first woman to both serve on this board and be designated chair since the ODWC was established in 1909.
In 2021, Gaddis became a board member of the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Foundation, whose mission is fundraising for special non-budgeted projects of the ODWC, thereby enhancing and improving hunting and fishing opportunities for Oklahoma hunters, anglers, and sportsmen/women.
In 2016, Gaddis and her husband, Roger Gaddis, were recognized as honorees at the Journal Record Beacon Awards for their community service contributions at the state and local level.
In April of 2018, Gaddis graduated from Leadership Oklahoma (LOK), Class 31.
At the local level, Gaddis is a graduate of Leadership Ada (Class of 2011). In past years, she served on the Leadership Ada Committee for the Ada Chamber of Commerce. She also served as is a co-chair of Career Discovery, a highly regarded educational program that provided area students with hands-on experience in a broad array of career paths.
Gaddis is a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association, a member of Safari Club International, Oklahoma Wildlife Management Association, and she has provided support for the Oklahoma City Gun Club, Women on Target' program and the National Wild Turkey Federation.
She graduated from East Central University in 1980 with a bachelor's degree in biology education.
When not working, The Gaddises enjoy spending time with their four sons/daughters-in-law and six grandchildren.
Wayne E. Kinzie—Posthumous (Class of 1951)
Kinzie grew up living next to his father’s business. He was always tinkering around the shop where he developed his mechanical skills early in life. It was also here where his endless ingenuity and resourcefulness led him to create and build a variety of projects including unicycles. His most unusual unicycle was seven feet tall; he would later ride it in the college marching band.
During high school Kinzie worked at the Alva Airport after school for Kenneth Crisp, often in exchange for flying time and lessons. In the summertime he would work for Earl Hellman and Autmer Gallon on their farms. While employed by Gallon, Kinzie figured out how to plow with two tractors simultaneously. He would get the first tractor heading straight following the furrow and then run across the field and get the second tractor going. Kinzie then would run across the field all night to catch each tractor on the corner turns until he finished the field.
During Kinzie's senior year at Northwestern his father died. He began working 12-hour night shifts on the construction of a local grain elevator to support his mother and sister. This took its toll on college classes, and he never graduated. Wayne served in the National Guard Headquarters battery, 189th field artillery battalion and the U.S. Army reserve.
Wayne purchased two damaged Ercoupe airplanes out of Wichita, Kansas. One had flipped over in a windstorm and the other had a collapsed gear. Wayne and his brother, Lynn, made one flyable plane out of the two. They sold the plane for enough money for a down payment on a bicycle, lawnmower, and Cushman scooter shop. While managing this business, Wayne designed, built and sold custom unicycles and tractor radios.
Earl Hellman offered Wayne space in one of his barns to start rebuilding airplanes until a hangar could be built at the Alva Airport. The Alva Industrial Foundation formed to finance and build that hangar. This was the third structure on the airport and the beginning of Kinzie Industries (FAA-approved Repair Station). Kinzie's first employees were his college classmates. College students were an integral part of Kinzie Industries. Approximately 450 students were employed in the business over the next 50 years.
Throughout the 1950s and 1960s Kinzie Industries specialized in single engine all metal airplanes (Cessna and Beech) consisting of major rebuilds, overhauls, repairs, and maintenance. The planes that went out the door were better than new, and Wayne earned a national reputation. He also developed equipment and techniques for retrieving downed aircraft in remote areas. Insurance companies, corporations, Cessna, and Beech, all hired him to retrieve aircraft.
In 1962 Wayne acquired his first damaged Hughes helicopter. From 1963-68 Wayne and his company continued rebuilding and repairing airplanes while expanding dramatically into helicopters. In 1968 he decided to specialize in Hughes Helicopters full time. The business grew successfully with Wayne managing the shop and Beverly supervising the office. All four children participated in the business. Kinzie Industries was noticed internationally for its impeccable workmanship. The business grew to include new manufactured replacement helicopter parts, agriculture aerial spraying, and gift and apparel products. Additionally, Kinzie designed and manufactured unique helicopter accessories. Many of Wayne’s aviation business philosophies, techniques, resourceful ideas, and methods were revolutionary in the industry and influenced generations. By the time the helicopter business sold in the early 2000’s, there were regular customers in all 50 states and 23 foreign countries. His FAA approved repair station had returned over 300 airplanes and 350 helicopters back to active flying status. In 50 years, no aircraft part failed, or an aircraft went down, due to workmanship or quality from Wayne and Kinzie Industries.
Kinzie's interests and hobbies encompassed travel, aircraft, antique trucks/cars, blacksmithing, trains, waterworks, unicycles, and anything mechanical. Most prominent were trains. This hobby involved Lionel electric trains, one ½ inch scale live steam trains, ore/mining cars, and narrow-gauge railroad cars from the D&RGW. Nothing gave Wayne joy like giving his grandkids and the neighborhood kids rides on his little steam train around his house and yard. Kinzie even acquired the Capron Santa Fe depot and restored it to operational condition with living quarters
Kinzie was an avid supporter of the community, airport, Alva, NWOSU, and Northwest Oklahoma. He never missed an opportunity to promote any aspect of this through his business or travels. He served on the Alva Airport Commission, Alva City Council, Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission, Northwestern Homecoming committee, and in various capacities at the First United Methodist Church. Kinzie's honors include Alva Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year in 2007 and 2016, a major contributor to Reunion 2000, Super Band Booster Award in 1982-83, NWOSU Alumni 1989 as Ranger Super Supporter, and Ranger Homecoming parade marshal in 2005.
Wayne and Beverly Kinzie were founding members of the Alva Mural Society. Kinzie spent his entire life taking care of family and friends. He put others first and was a source of strength, calm, and dependability. Until his last breath his thoughts were about taking care of others.
Warren 'Bud' Nichols—Teacher
Moving to Alva in 1953, Warren “Bud” and Maxine Nichols were well known educators in the Alva Public Schools and at Northwestern Oklahoma State University.
Bud graduated from high school in Watonga, received his bachelor's degree in math, science and coaching from the University of Central Oklahoma and a master's degree from Oklahoma State University. He was awarded a doctorate from North Texas State University in Denton, Texas. He and Maxine were married after a tour of duty in the United States Air Force.
Maxine received her bachelor's degree in elementary education and English from Northwestern Oklahoma State University, as well as a master's from NWOSU in 1966.
Bud was a teacher and then assistant superintendent in the Alva School District before becoming an instructor at Northwestern. Maxine taught in the Alva Public Schools for 30 years.
Beverly Little—Honorary Goldbug
My Goldbug career began when I was student teaching second graders at Lincoln Elementary School. Then I was privileged to teach awesome fifth and sixth grade Goldbugs at Lincoln Elementary School for 20 years. Twenty-two more years were spent with outstanding second and third graders as principal at Longfellow Elementary School and as a central office administrator.
Goldbugs allowed me to be honored as an Outstanding Student Teacher, Lincoln Teacher of the Year, Alva Teacher of the Year, Woods County Teacher of the Year, and District Teacher of the Year. Thank you, Goldbugs!
My Goldbug family includes two Goldbug sons, a Goldbug daughter-in-law, three Goldbug granddaughters and a future Goldbug great granddaughter. My non-Goldbug family includes a daughter-in-law, a granddaughter, a grandson and a great granddaughter.
I've been married for 11 years to an amazing Alva Goldbug, Warren Little. To our marriage he brought three more Goldbug daughters, two sons-in-law, nine grandchildren and five great grandchildren, with two more on the way!
After 42 years as an Alva educator, I truly feel like a Goldbug! Thank you for naming me an Honorary Goldbug.