Phillips and Oas Honored at Legends and Legacy Banquet

Dakota State University will present the Philanthropists of the Year Award and Faculty Legend Award at the annual Legends and Legacy Banquet, Friday, May 1 at the Dakota Prairie Playhouse.

Gene and Margie Phillips are being honored as Philanthropists of the Year and Dr. Robert Oas will be receiving the Faculty Legend Award. In announcing the award recipients, Judith Payne, Vice President for Advancement at Dakota State, expressed appreciation for the service both the Phillips' and Dr. Oas have given to the University. "The Philanthropists of the Year Award allows us to honor Gene and Margie, who not only take opportunities to give, they actually create them by being aware of the needs of the University, and taking steps to help." Payne reflected on Dr. Oas' career in education in announcing his selection for the Faculty Legend Award. "Dr. Oas came to Dakota State prior to the mission change, and was one of the faculty who made the transition. He was director of student teaching during that critical time as we built new curriculum on the strong foundations of our existing programs."

Gene and Margie Phillips became members of the Madison community in 1976. Their family home in Madison was recently purchased by the DSU Foundation and is now the DSU President's residence. The Phillips facilitated the home sale along with a generous donation to Dakota State. Gene was affiliated with the trucking industry his entire career and in 2002, he became owner of B&G Transportation. Over the years, Gene's activities included positions with the Madison Chamber of Commerce, the LAIC, Forward Madison's $2 million fund raising effort, past president and long-time member of the SD Truckers Association, as well as other community and state organizations.

Margie was executive director of the Karl E. Mundt Foundation and served on the board for 25 years. She was then employed by the Madison Career Learning Center. She was appointed by Governor George Mickelson to the SD Board of Regents in 1989 - 1992, the first appointee from Lake County. She was appointed by Governor Bill Janklow to serve on the SD Development Corporate board, a post she held for 10 years. Margie was affiliated with many DSU activities and community organizations over the years.

Gene and Margie each received the Madison Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Service Award in 1992. In 2006, she was given the Outstanding Friend of Education award for her work in helping to raise funds for the Madison High School computer effort.

Dr. Robert Oas, Professor Emeritus of Education, retired in 1994 after 25 years at Dakota State. He began his career in education as a teacher in Humboldt. He moved on to Alexandria, serving first as principal and later superintendent of schools. Dr. Oas came to Dakota State in 1969 as the director of student teaching. He was also a professor in the education department, and served for a time as Chairperson of the Division of Education, Physical Education, and Behavioral Science.

Dr. Oas received his undergraduate degree from Northern State University, masters from South Dakota State University, and his Ed.D. from the University of South Dakota. During his professional career, he served on many committees, accreditation, and educational review teams. He has been active in the community through Trinity Lutheran Church and membership in the Kiwanis.

Tickets for the Legends and Legacy Banquet are available through the DSU Foundation at 256-5693.

Last Updated: 8/12/11