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McKee, Rankin named recipients of Dean Ranson Scholarship at Northwestern

(ALVA, Okla. Oct. 27, 2016) – Fairview natives Colton McKee and Rylee Rankin are the 2016-2017 recipients of the Dean Ranson Scholarship at Northwestern Oklahoma State University.Rylee and Colton

McKee, a sophomore criminal justice major with hopes of working as a federal agent in the future, says he greatly appreciates the financial support scholarships provides him. He says as a student living off campus and commuting back and forth between Fairview and Alva, scholarships – in a way – make that travel expense lighter.

Rankin, a senior special education major and active participant in intramurals and chemistry club, views her scholarships as opportunities from donors to help her succeed in life.

“I think it’s great these donors are willing to help students like me with our education,” said Rankin. “Without support from scholarships, I’d have to take out loans and have the stress of paying those loans back for the next 20 years.”

The Dean Ranson Scholarship was established at Northwestern in 2003 in honor of Ranson, of Fairview, by his daughters and their families, Rita and Jeral Cain, of Fort Worth, Texas and Janis and Robert Johnson, of Montclair, Va. The scholarship provides financial assistance to full-time continuing Northwestern students with a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average. First preference is given to applicants from Major County.

Ranson grew up on a family farm southwest of Fairview and graduated from Longdale High School in 1938.  On Dec. 23, 1942, he married Ethel Martin, who preceded him in death in July 1989.  He graduated from Northwestern State College in 1943 with a degree in physics and mathematics. Following graduation, he served 34 months with the U.S. Army Signal Corps during World War II.  After receiving his military discharge, he taught high school for one year at Zenda, Kan. 

In 1947, he returned to Fairview to begin his 55-year career with the Farmers and Merchants National Bank. Ranson served the bank in various positions before being elected president in 1972. In 1985, he was elected chairman of the board and in 1988 became CEO. 

During his banking career, he provided leadership to many civic and community organizations.  He also served on the Board of Directors of the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation. In 1990, he married Mary Teske. In 2002, Ranson received the Fairview Chamber of Commerce Lifetime Achievement Award, and he retired from Farmers and Merchants National Bank that same year.  He passed away in 2007.

For more information about investing in students at Northwestern, contact Skeeter Bird, Northwestern Foundation CEO, at aebird@nwosu.edu or 580-327-8593.

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