OMA Perseverance Award Recipient
Bill Harris, '54
Perseverance Award Recipient
Bill B. Harris was born and raised in McAlester, Oklahoma. He attended the Oklahoma Military Academy for three years, graduating in 1954. While at OMA, Bill was active on the OMA Rifle Team and the team won the William Hearst trophy in 1954. As an OMA cadet, he was selected as the “Best Drilled Cadet” and was the Drill Team Commander for the 1953-54 school year. As Company Commander his A Company was selected as the best company at the 1954 warboard inspection. Bill was also a distinguished military student in 1954.
After graduating from OMA, Bill went on to Oklahoma A&M College, known today as Oklahoma State University. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Geology in 1956. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in Artillery and took his Basic Course at Ft. Sill in 1957. While serving as Battery Commander at Ft. Chaffee, Arkansas, he was a member of the big bore rifle team and participated in the 4th Army level competition.
In his professional career, Bill was associated with such well- known oil companies as Cities Service and Schlumberger. He began as a Geological Trainee, was promoted to Field Engineer, and then Sales Engineer. His 40-year career was all in Oklahoma, and he retired from Schlumberger in 1998. Bill served as President of the Society of Professional Well Log Analysts in 1988, is a member of the Oklahoma Geological Society, and the Society of Petroleum Engineers.
Bill’s retirement years have been filled with several activities, including holding the Vice President’s office of the Sooner Model “A” Club and being Director of the Edinburgh Homeowner’s Association. Bill also served several terms as President of the OMA Alumni Association and as a board member for many years. Bill has three children: Stephanie, Brent, and John. He also has four grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, and one step great-grandchild.
Bill’s favorite memories at OMA all include the friends he made as a cadet and as an alumnus, “Friends made through OMA are lasting friends.” Of receiving this award, he said, “I am humbled, honored, and extremely grateful for this award.”
Allen Lewis, '61
Perseverance Award Recipient
Allen Lewis graduated from OMA Junior College in 1961, received a BS in Physics from Indiana University in 1963, and an MBA in Economics from The University of Chicago Graduate School of Business in 1972. He then completed the Program for Senior Executives in National and International Security from Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government in 1993. While at OMA, he achieved the rank of Cadet Second Lieutenant and received the Outstanding Cadet Identification Disk, Academic Achievement Wreath, Merit Ribbon, Military Proficiency Ribbon, Top Military Science Award, Top Science Award, DA Superior Military School Cadet Medal, and the Association of the US Army Medal. Allen was on the Dean’s and President’s Honor Roll, and the New Cadet Detail. He was a member of the Chevron and Saber Society and the Sports Editor of the ’61 “Vedette.” He was first in his OMA Junior College Class. In 2016, he was recognized as a Distinguished Alumni.
Allen was commissioned a Lieutenant of Artillery and entered active duty at Fort Sill, Oklahoma in September 1963, and served on Active Army for 28 years and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1991. Assignments included Germany (1964-67), South Vietnam (1967-68), South Korea (1972-73), and at several Army installation and other locations in the U.S. He was assigned to the Army Staff at the Pentagon (1982-83), where he was the Army’s focal point for Space Activities.
He graduated from several Army schools, including the Field Artillery Officers Advanced Course, the Armed Forces Staff College, and the Army War College. His last assignment was as Chief of the Army Element, National Reconnaissance Office and the Senior Army Advisor to the Director, National Reconnaissance Office. Decorations received include the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters and was awarded the Army Staff Identification Badge and the Air Force Master Space Badge. After retiring from the Army, Allen joined Lockheed Missiles and Space Company, in their Washington Operations Office in Washington, D.C. He retired in 2003, as Director, Advanced Space Programs, Space and Strategic Missiles Sector, Lockheed Martin Corporation Washington Operations.
Allen married Colleen Goeppner of Jasper, Indiana, on November 30, 1963. They have two sons: Allen II, born at Stuttgart, Germany in 1967, and Michael, born at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in 1969, and four grandchildren.
2022 Perseverance Award Recipient
- Willis Hardwick '56
- Hugh Miller '53
2021 Perseverance Award Recipient