Southwestern Oklahoma State University

Distinguished Alumni

James Powers

James Stanley "Stan" Powers - 1988

James Stanley “Stan” Powers was born in Custer City, Oklahoma, in 1935.  He moved to the farm west of Putnam at the age of 4.  James grew up on the farm with parents Loyd and Docia Powers.  Docia received her degree from SWOSU and was employed by the State Health and Welfare Department in Dewey County until her retirement.  Both parents are deceased. 

Stan attended elementary and high school at Putnam.  He attended SWOSU from 1953-57 and received a bachelor’s degree in physics and math.  While attending SWOSU, he worked as a physics laboratory assistant under Mr. Pratt and Mr. Jones. 

In February 1957, he was employed by Southwestern Bell Telephone Company as a Staff Assistant in Oklahoma City.  From 1957 through 1987, he started climbing the success ladder, moving up from Staff Assistant to Wire Chief, Installation Foreman, Chief Switchman, Wire Chief, District Engineer, District Plant Superintendent, Plant Supervisor, and Division Manager of Network Maintenance, Division Manager of Network Distribution, and finally Division Manager of NCOO Area Code 918.  The promotions over the years kept him moving to various cities such as Henryetta, Bartlesville, Ponca City, Muskogee, and Tulsa. 

On February 1, 1987, he became Division Manager of Network Operations.  This position is responsible for directing and coordinating the operation of the network operations division.  This division encompasses the state of Oklahoma serving some 1,250,000 access lines.  The division provides direct line supervision to five districts that are responsible for installation, maintenance, operation and administration of switching systems, network trunking, toll terminal equipment, special services installation and maintenance, and staff support to operations and personnel.  These operations utilize state of the art communications equipment including, microwave, digital multiples carriers, fiber optic cable, analog electronic and digital switching systems.  The personnel consist of five district managers and a total of approximately 1100 employees.

Stan has served as President, Vice-President, and a member of the Executive Board of Oklahoma Pioneer chapter 41, a 6900 member telephone association.  He is Chairman of the Board of the Communications Federal Credit Union, serving 27,000 members.  He is also chairman of the Communications Credit Union that serves 120 members. 

Particular jobs that Stan is especially proud of include establishing a new district in Tulsa (Tulsa South as District Plant Superintendent in 1973); establishing a new Network Maintenance Division as Division Manager 1977; establishing the new Network Distribution Division as Division Manager in 1979, and consolidating the Network Central Office Division-918 to the Network Operation Division for the State as Division Manager in 1987. 

Honors or awards which Stan has received include The Raider Award in 1985.  This award is a Southwestern Bell Company award which you must demonstrate an unusual degree of creativity, must have taken steps outside what is expected on the job and must have conducted the service on behalf of the company. 

Stan married Patricia Woldridge in 1954.  Pat is a native of Thomas.  They have two sons, James Jr., and Mark.  Stan has one sister, Jo Ann Wyatt, who lives in Lubbock, Texas.  She received her degree from SWOSU in 1960.