Oklahoma Military Academy
First presented in 1983, the Oklahoma Military Academy Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes those alumni who have distinguished themselves in their professional or military careers and in service to their community by participation in the OMA Alumni Association or in the activities of Rogers State University.
Mr. Ken Colley, '69
Ken Colley has led by example, giving back to the community and organizations to make a difference in the lives of others. A native of Fort Smith, Arkansas, Colley came to OMA for high school in 1966, graduated the following year and attended junior college at OMA, graduating in 1969. He served as class president and vice-president of his OMA junior college class and was an officer in the Saber Society. He was the 1968 recipient of the U.S. Meyers Award for the "cadet with high morals and leadership.
"From his first moments at OMA, he showed determination and excellence, as seen by his early recognition as a Rabbit in 1966 with Golf Company and in his service as a member of the best drill squad and best drill platoon, both in 1966. Active on campus, Colley earned an athletic ribbon in baseball, an academic achievement wreath and was a member of the Guidon staff, drill team and rifle team. He earned the rank of cadet lieutenant colonel and served as a battalion executive officer at OMA. He also attended Fort Benning Summer camp in 1967 and the Fort Sill summer camp in 1968.
A second-generation military man, Colley followed the path of his father Ralph, who retired as a major from the U.S. Army in 1964 after a 24-year military career serving in WWII, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. His older brother Chad also had a military career and was a commissioned first lieutenant serving in Vietnam.
After graduating from OMA, he earned a business degree from John Brown University. Colley continued serving his country as a member of the 188th Air National Guard in Fort Smith from 1971 through 1976. Colley counts among his fondest OMA memories presenting Bob Hope with a saber during an appearance in Tulsa. When the comedian saw Colley and Cadet Col. Brack Jackson approaching with the sword, he joked, "I've been drafted," much to the crowd's amusement.
Colley owns and operates a successful real estate appraisal company in Fort Smith. He also is an active volunteer with the Rotary Club, where in 2013 he will begin serving a one-year term as the district governor for parts of Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. Colley has been actively involved with the Rotary's youth exchange program, hosting young people from Germany, Brazil, Columbia, Hungary, Taiwan and South Africa. He also led a group study exchange team for a one-month event in Brazil in 2008.
Colley has been married to his wife, Lynn, for 41 years and they have two children, KC Colley and Courtney Fulton, and one grandchild, Archer Colley. Colley also has been selected as the adjutant for the 2013 OMA Alumni Association reunion.
Mr. Carlos Galvez, '60
Born in Guatemala and raised in northeast Oklahoma, Carlos Galvez asserts his military service and education helped him make the most important decision in his life – to become a U.S. citizen.
"Changing one's nationality is not an easy decision," he says. "However in my case, it became evident that this is my home and this is where I wanted to raise my family."
Galvez was sent to Oklahoma when he was seven. He attended St. Joseph Preparatory School in Muskogee, which had a school culture that made him feel very much at home when he transferred to a military academy. He attended high school at OMA for his senior year, graduating in 1958. He then went on to graduate from OMA junior college in 1960.
At OMA, he achieved the cadet rank of captain and served as a group adjutant during his time at OMA. He was a member of the Chevron Society and the Saber Society, and was recognized as best drilled cadet for 1958-59. Active on campus, he also was a member of the drill team, cadet capers, judge's bench, Vedette staff, honor court and new cadet detail. He played basketball and was a member of the bowling team. He fondly recalls his memories of trips taken with the drill team and representing OMA in the public.
Following graduation, he served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1962-1968. He went on to work in the hotel and construction industry while going to night school at the University of Tulsa, where he earned a bachelor's degree in business administration in 1969.
He parlayed that experience into a nearly five decade career in the pipeline construction industry, where he worked internationally in the Middle East, South America, the Far East and Africa. He has been involved with major pipeline projects, including the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, Trans-Ecuadorian Pipeline, IGAT Pipeline in Iran, and the Alto Magdalena in Colombia just to name a few.
Following his retirement, he has provided consulting services working in the pipeline industry to assist companies in maximizing their assets.
"The education received while attending OMA prepare many of us to pursue careers in various fields. Though our enrollment was never very large, I am still quite impressed by the number of successful individuals generated by this institution," he says.
Mr. Curtis E. McMenamy, '64
Curtis E. McMenamy's fondest and worst memory at OMA was leaving the Hill at graduation. Although he knew he was leaving to make his mark in the world, leaving the school after five years felt like moving away from family.
McMenamy graduated high school at OMA in 1962 and junior college at OMA in 1964. McMenamy also attended Edison High School in Tulsa and Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma.
During his time at the Hill, McMenamy played football, was on the golf and swim teams, and was high school basketball team captain. He was awarded the Athletic Ribbon, the Military Proficiency Ribbon, the Sharp Shooter Badge, the Merit Ribbon, and was on the Dean's Honor Roll. He was awarded the Best Drill Company, Outstanding Company, the Best Drill Platoon, and was a Drill Team Commander. He was in Cadet Capers, the Chevron Society, DeMolay, the Drill Team, Elks Club, Judge's Bench, New Cadet Detail, Officers Advisory Committee, and the Saber Society. He was also DeMolay Master Councilor, Rifle Expert M-1, a Saber Society Officer, a Chevron Society Officer, Junior College Class Vice President, a Distinguished Military Student, part of the Honor Court and attended the Fort Sill Summer Camp.
McMenamy served in the U.S. Army from 1967-69 and was in the reserves until 1978 as a Captain. He was president of the National Welding Supply from 1969-85, president of Comutel Inc from 1985-1989, and general manager of Omni Tech from 1989-1992. He worked at Spray Tech/Sears Home Improvement from 1992-2003 where he was director of regional sales. McMenamy has worked at Home Depot since 2004.
McMenamy has been an active community volunteer, including with Shriners Hospitals for Children, as president of the National Welding Supply Association, sponsoring the Make-A-Wish-Foundation for six years and was a past chairman of the United Way. During a United Way fund drive while he was in active duty, McMenamy was number one in the Fourth Army in dollars collected and percentage of goal, for which he was awarded the Army Commendation Medal.
He and his wife Sandra have four children - two sons and two daughters. He also has five grandchildren and a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Ali -- but don't call her a dog ,it hurts her feelings.
McMenamy says it is a great honor just to be nominated as a Distinguished Alumni and Hall of Fame nominee. "Living 1,300 miles away from OMA, [I] wish I could have done more to support the Alumni," he said. "When I look over the names of those honorees who came before, I see many military heroes, men who have performed exceptional public service and those who have supported OMA for years after they left the Hill. Again, it's a great honor just to be thought of with these great individuals."