Hall of Fame Member Biographies

Joe M. Kinzer, Jr.

Oklahomans have indeed been fortunate in the leadership of the private and public institutions of higher education in the state, and there is no better example of the proof of that statement than the presidency of Joe M. Kinzer, Jr., at Northern Oklahoma College. Dr. Kinzer earned his doctorate in Higher Education in 1972. He began his collegiate career at Cameron University, later moved to the University of Central Oklahoma where he became Dean of the College of Business Administration. In 1990, he succeeded Dr. Ed Vineyard as President of Northern Oklahoma College.  As President of NOC, he blazed a trail of campus program enhancements, expansion, and technological innovation. He pioneered in creating technology partnerships with private companies, adding interactive television courses, and then adapted class instruction via the internet. He expanded Northern’s presence in the Enid area by purchasing Phillips University, and later established a campus in Stillwater in conjunction with Oklahoma State University. On the main campus of NOC at Tonkawa, campus facilities and programs were developed, renovated, and constructed including the Performing Arts Center, the Wellness Center, and the Renfro Center which houses the Nursing Division. Dr. Kinzer shared his time with numerous professional and community organizations. He was involved in the establishment of the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs, serving as President of the Association as well as Chairman of the Board of Directors. He also served as Chair of the Oklahoma Council of Two-Year College Presidents. Part of his career was devoted to enhancing international relations and directed the nation’s first China-American Friendship Program in 1985-86, and was active in exchange programs and other projects in the People’s Republic of China, Germany, Italy, South America, and the United Arab Emirates. Dr. Kinzer retired from the presidency of NOC in 2008, and the OHEHS salutes his outstanding career and welcomes him into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame.