Eugene Laurrel Swearingen was involved with Oklahoma higher education for more than fifty years, serving as professor and administrator at three institutions and as board member of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education. He first joined Oklahoma State University's faculty in 1948 as Professor of Economics, then served OSU as a dean and as vice president. He was president of the University of Tulsa in 1967-1968, and resigned to become president of the Bank of Oklahoma. In 1982, he became Chair of Entrepreneurship at Oral Roberts University, and held that chair until his death in 2002. Swearingen was a member of the Oklahoma Hall of Fame and was inducted into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame in 2003.