SWOSU Administration Building Renamed in Honor of Former President John Hays

Dr. John Hays

The Administration Building at Southwestern Oklahoma State University in Weatherford has a new name.

The building’s renaming to John Hays Administration Building was approved July 25 by the regents of the Regional University System of Oklahoma in honor of Hays who served as the 16th president of SWOSU from 2001-2010.

Hays, a 1969 accounting graduate of SWOSU, spent most of his 30 years of service to SWOSU in the Administration Building where he served as assistant business manager, comptroller, assistant to the president, vice president for administration, and executive vice president for administration before being named president of SWOSU. 

“This is a well-deserved tribute to a person who has made a great and lasting impact on higher education in Oklahoma,” said SWOSU President Randy Beutler. “There is no better way to credit John Hays’ commitment and dedication to this institution than in the naming of this building in his honor.”

While president of SWOSU, he was active in community and economic development activities in western Oklahoma.  Dr. Hays was on the ground floor of many projects such as the Center for Economic and Business Development at SWOSU and other economic development activities in the Weatherford area.

The 1994 Leadership Oklahoma graduate was very involved in civic activities, including Leadership Weatherford, YMCA, Vision 20/20, Weatherford Arts Council, Weatherford’s assisted senior citizen living center and many other projects through the Weatherford Area Chamber of Commerce, an organization he served as president in 1993.  He also served on the Weatherford School Board from 1985-90.

Hays, who grew up in Willow (OK), won numerous awards and received the Sam Walton Business Leader Award in 1999 from Wal-Mart and, in 1996, won the Outstanding Service Award from the Weatherford Area Chamber of Commerce. He is also a member of the Weatherford Area Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame.