Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College (NEO) President Dr. Jeff Hale instituted a new event this summer to recognize and thank the physical plant for “Keeping NEO Beautiful,” which served as the theme for the event. Hale used the event to acknowledge the hard work put forth by the entire physical plant but specifically six members from the maintenance crew.
NEO’s Foundation and the President’s Partners program awarded the six individuals $250 each for their hard work in keeping NEO’s campus clean and safe.
The following individuals were recognized:
· Custodial Award – Jim Wiford
Wiford has worked at NEO for the past nine years of which the last three he has been a custodial supervisor. Wiford serves as the ‘go-to’ guy for the rest of the custodial staff. He is responsible for all the work in the Fine Arts Center and distributes all cleaning supplies, and he also refurbishes floors in various buildings during the summer.
According to his supervisor Steve Grimes, “Jim is always enthusiastic about making NEO look great. He is described as organized, gets along great with the staff and has brought the custodial crew to a higher level of professionalism.”
· Custodial Award – Delores Oswald
Oswald has worked at NEO for seven years and was moved to oversee the student union shortly after it was renovated in 2011.
“Oswald has done a great job in keeping the building looking brand new. With all the daily activity and special events, this is a demanding job, yet she is always friendly and helpful to students and visitors,” Grimes said.
· Building Maintenance Award – Jack Pryor
This award went to a master electrician who has been on staff for the past 12 years. Thanks to his dedication, a recent energy audit from Johnson Control Energy Team yielded very few areas of concern in regards to campus electrical and lighting systems.
“Pryor is very dedicated to his position,” Grimes said. “He does a great job in looking for ways to conserve energy and is very budget-conscious when purchasing materials.”
· Campus Grounds Award – Brad Morgan
Morgan began as temporary help following a damaging hailstorm and has since worked at NEO for the past 11 years. He is described by his supervisor as multi-talented and task oriented. He is now overseeing all fleet operations and landscaping.
“From the looks of NEO’s campus, he does a fantastic job managing the landscaping and has made the campus look beautiful on a limited budget,” Grimes said.
· Farm Facilities Award – John McMain
McMain has been overseeing the NEO Farm for the past three years.
“Thanks to his tireless efforts, the farm looks the best it has ever has looked in its history,” said Tyler Dewey, supervisor and department chair of agriculture. “He is a one-man shop.”
McMain’s job responsibilities include: custodial work for the college arena, assisting in the management and care of the college’s cattle herd, maintaining the upkeep of the farm, (mowing and fencing), feeding the livestock and more.
“He will be very instrumental in the future renovations of the farm and is an important asset to the agriculture department,” Dewey said.
· Athletic Facilities Award – Jamie Williams
Williams has been a long-time supporter of NEO Athletics and has been on staff since 2012. In just two years, he has created a new student-athlete lounge for NEO baseball players.
“He painted the baseball press box, dugouts and upgraded the press box and visitor areas to include air conditioning,” said Dale Patterson, athletic director. “Williams designed and developed an indoor pitching area for baseball and softball with heat and lighting, and he brought a corporate signage program to Homa Thomas Field. He is an asset to the college.”