OPS Hall of Fame Inductees
1981 OHS Graduate
Stuart graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1985 with a BS in Electrical Engineering. He graduated from Oxford University in England in 1988. Stuart was with Nuclear Missions Operations in the US Navy from 1988 until 1999. He was Executive Officer of a nuclear submarine and served as Deputy Executive Assistant to the Commander in Chief of the US Pacific Command. Stuart is a Rhodes Scholar, White House Fellow, and permanent member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Phil HansenInducted 2006
1986 OHS Graduate
1991 NDSU Graduate
While at NDSU, Phil was named small college defensive lineman of the year. He was picked first team All-American his junior and senior year. Phil was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the second round of the 1991 NFL draft and completed 11 seasons with them. While with the Bills, he played in 156 regular season games and 14 post season games including Super Bowls XXVI, XXVII, and XXVIII. His 61.5 career sacks rans second in Bill history.
Edythe SkarpInducted 2006
Edythe was a teacher at Oakes Elementary School from 1975 until 1995. She was known as the tooth lady, often pulling a loose tooth of a student. Edythe loved teaching, golf, and her family. She was a much loved and respected educator.
Michael PodolakInducted 2006
1972 OHS Graduate
North Dakota's #1 amateur golfer, Michael was a 6 time ND match play champion, 8 time ND Stroke play champion, 3 time ND best ball champion, 10 time low amateur ND open champion. 1984 United States Mid-Amateur champion, 1985 US Walker Cup team member, 1999 Trans Mississippi amateur champion, and 1986 US Masters Tournament invitee.
George RempferInducted 2007
Teacher, Coach, Athletic Director at Oakes High School 1959-1976
George was a standout athlete at Zeeland High School and at the State Normal College in Ellendale. He taught and coached at Oakes High School from 1959-1976 winning seven Conference Football Championships, and two State Golf Titles. He was the first coach for the wrestling program in 1961. His 1965 and 1973 gootball teams were undefeated. He was named Coach of the Year by the ND Coaches Association in 1973, and was admitted to the Football Fifty Club in 1968 for coaching varsity football teams to 50 victories and to the Wrestling Seventy-five Club in 1970 for coaching varsity wrestling teams to 75 dual meet victories. George was inducted into the ND High School Coaches Hall of Fame in 1989.
Donald L. PeitzInducted 2008
Teacher at Oakes High School 1960-1997
Don, a 1957 graduate of VCSU, served as Director of Bands at Oakes High School from 1960-1997. Don was credited for penning the arrangement of the school anthem "Raise the Banner." Under Don's direction, the marching band was named "Oustanding Band" in 1969 at the WDAY Band Festival and chosen to represent North Dakota at the Minnesota State Fair. Don was awarded the "Golden Apple Award" in 1986 from the Oakes School Board.
Gerald RingdahlInducted 2009
Teacher at Oakes High School 1964-1987
Gerald Ringdahl was born and raised on a farm near Milnor, ND. He attended Valley City State College. He taught for 30 years, 23 of which were with the Oakes Public School. Gerald taught at many different levels, but most people remember him as a Junior High Science Teacher. He brought hands-on learning into the classroom long before it became fashionable. He will be remembered for the famous cigar box from which he pulled student names to answer questions posed by him. Gerald was a respected and much admired educator. His help, understanding, and interest in students' welfare built a lasting impression.
Stan HokanaInducted 2010
1967 OHS Graduate
While a student at OHS, Stan was a standout athlete in football, basketball and most notably track & field. He won seventeen championship conference, regional and state medals during his high school career and is a current OHS record holder. In 1966 Stan and fellow teammate, Tim Nichols, brought home to OHS its first State Title in track. This was also the first State Title on record for OHS in any sport. At the state meet Stan placed 1s in the low hurdles and 3rd in the 100 yard dash. Stan raised his family in Oakes and over the years has been a big supporter of OHS athletics. He was the track starter for many years and was very instrumental in building the OHS Centennial Track.
Tim NicholsInducted 2010
1968 OHS Graduate
While a student at OHS, Tim was a standout athlete in football, basketball, and most notably track and field. He is a three time state 1st place finisher in the high hurdles an dholds the retired state record of 14.9 in the high hurdles. In 1966 Tim and fellow teammate Stan Hokana brought home to OHS its first State Title in track. This was also the first State Title on record for OHS in any sport. At the state meet Tim placed 1st in the high hurdles and 2nd in the low hurdles.
Mable "Ma" BaileyInducted 2010
Teacher at OHS 1928 - 1949
Ma's ability as a teacher cannot be questioned. She has been a confessor to the heavy laden, a found of knowledge to those who seek enlightement and a just disciplinarian to some few in ignorace of the meaning of rules and regulations. her years of unstinted service, unfailing promptness and her motherliness have increased the obligation of teach far beyond repay.
N.W. "Nate" CummingsInducted 2011
Teacher, Coach, Superintendent 1929 - 1970
Born in Madison, WI, Nate graduated from Valley City State College and from UND with a MS in school administration. Nate gave 41 years of devoted service to Oakes Schools and community as well as at state and national levels. Nate was highly respected and widely recognized for his contributions. From 1951 to 1959, he served as Athletic Officer for North Dakota American Legion Baseball, supervising national tournaments. Oakes won the North Daktoa Sate Championship in 1951. He was a board member of the NDHSAA from 1963 - 1968 and served as their representative with the National Federation of High Schools. Nate was inducted into the North Dakota Legion Baseball Hall of Fame in 1977. The "Nate Cummings Award" and "Cummings Field" are named in his honor.
"To do the wrong thing is sometimes the easiest, to do the right thing is sometimes hardest."
Teacher at Oakes Elementary School 1960-1970
Librarian at Oakes High School 1970-1980
Doris graduated from Oakes High School in 1943, receiving a 2 year degree from Jamestown College, and a 4 year degree in secondary English and Library Science from UND. She started teaching at Oakes Elementary School in 1960 and continued teaching until 1970 at which time she became the Head Librarian at Oakes High School until retiring in 1980. Doris spent countless hours assisting with the organization and cataloging of the former Oakes Elementary Library in the early 1990's. Doris continued as a substitute teacher, substitute librarian, and student tutor until 2005. Shw was a member of the Drum and Bugle Core and the Oakes Band Mothers.
Teacher at Oakes High School 1965 - 1995
At Oakes High School, Dick taught Social Studies for 31 years, coached for 24 years, and was Athletic Director for 12. He was named the Class B Athletic Director of the Year in 1987. He was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame at DSU in 2001. He was inducted into the ND Coach's Hall of Fame in 2004. Dick had a total of 448 wins in 3 schools during his 28 years as a head basketball coach. As head basketball coach, OHS achieved 12 Southeast Conference championships, 10 District championships, and 3 Regional Championships.
Teacher at Oakes High School 1971 - 1995
Of Sharon's 31 years in education, she taught 6 years in Guelph and 23 years in Oakes, retiring in 1995. High School Mathematics was Sharon's first priority and passion. She coached girls' track, dance team, and was an advisor for cheerleading and National Honor Society. "Maintaining contact with my former students and seeing them achieve their goals has been very rewarding."
Teacher at Oakes High School 1969 - 2001
Garry Opp was an elementary teacher who taught 5thg grade for the Oakes School from 1969 - 2001. During his 32 years, he taught 15 years in Guelph and 17 years in Oakes. He also coached wrestling, track, and junior high football. Garry spent 19 years as the head coach of the Tornado wrestling program. Through those years, the team was able to bring home 7 individual champions and the 1993 State championship. As a coach, Garry was named the 1992 North Dakota High School Wrestling Coach of the Year and in 2004 he was inducted into the North Dakota Wrestling Hall of Fame. Garry did what he loved and was thankful to be able to touch the lives of all of his students and athletes throughout the years.
Donald A. "Carp" Charpentier
1942 OHS Graduate
Prior to graduation, Carp enlisted in the US Marine Corp to joing the WWII effort. Carp served in four campaigns during WWII; New Britton, Gudalcanal, Pelelui and Okinawa. While on Pelelui he was shot through the jaw earning him a Purple Heart. On Okinawa he earned the Navy Cross, our nations's second highest decoartion for valor, for extraordinary heroism protecting his fellow comrades. Carp sent most of his life in Oakes, was a 60+ year member of the Oakes American Legion, a lifetime member of the Oakes Volunteer Fire Department and was highly supportive of OHS athletics.
Vicki Bassingwaite Coleman
1975 OHS Graduate
Pioneer in Girls' and Women's Athletics
Vicki was an outstanding athlete in the early days of competitive girls' sports. She was an individual state champion in the 440-yard dash and a member of many successful relays. In the second year of the OHS girls' basketball program, she led the team to a 13-2 record. Vicki was a four sport athlete at VCSU, lettering in volleyball, basketball, track, and golf. She started the volleyball program at Hazen High School in 1979 and coached them to a state championship in 1993. She was a long-time basketball referree in North Dakota and continued a successful career as educator and coach at Devils Lake High School; Lake Region Junior College; and Beatrice and Lincoln, Nebraska.
1973 OHS Graduate
James graduated OHS in 1973, VCSU in 1979 and received his master's degree from SDSU. He played 5 sports at Oakes to a thrid place finish at the State B's in 1972. Jim received the Nate Cummings Award in 1973. He went on to play college basketball at NDSSS and VCSU, holding the highest free throw percentage record at both schools.
Jim was head basketball coace for 33 years and ranks 9th all-time in South Dakota history with a total number of varsity wins of 577. His teams won 4 state titles and competed in 18 state tournaments. He was the 1990 Basketball Coach of the Year and a finalist for Nation Coach of the Year in 2004. He will be inducted into the Sioux Falls Washington High School Hall of Fame in October 2017. He received the Distinguished Merit Service Award from VCSU in 2016. Jim and his wife, Jennifer, have three children who graduated from Washington High School.
Born near Eureka, South Dakota, Edna completed her nursing training at Missoula, Montana in 1947 and moved to Oakes her four sons in 1959 upon the death of her husband Kay Zieman. Edna or "Eddie" served as the school nurse for Oakes High School for nineteen years beginning in 1960. Edna also served Oakes Schools as a cook for nine years.
In recognition of her outstanding leadership and remarkable efforts for the youth and community of Oakes, Edna was selected as Woman of the Year by the Oakes Active Art, Honorary FHA member, Woman of the Year and Distinguished Service award by the Oakes Chamber of Commerce.
With her twenty eight years serving the students of Oakes schools Edna gathered the respect and gratitute of Oakes folks for her contributions to others and exemplified the many mothers, women, educators and community members who have dedicated themselves to the spirit that permeates in Oakes - Commitment and Service to Others.
1965 OHS Graduate
Class B Wrestling Coach
Rod Garland is a graduate of Oakes High School (1965) and Valley City State University (1969). He began coacing in 1981 as an assistant for Garry Opp at Oakes High School. Over the next 35 years, Rod was part of 525 dual wins, three Dual State Championships, five Individual State Championship Teams, 13 Regional Team Championshiops, 37 Indivdual State Champions and 169 State place winners. He was most proud of the athletes he coached and the countless hours of time and practice just to be a part of the team. Rod was named Class B Junior High Wrestling Coach of the Year in 2012, and was indcuted into the Class B Wrestling Coaching Hall of Fame in 2017. He has retired from coaching but still enjoys attending practices, duals and tournaments. Rod is married (Deb) with one son (Eric) and three stepsons (Jeff, Ryan and John).
1978 OHS Graduate
Randy became a member of the Oakes Fire Department in 1985. He was an active firefighter for 33 years, 17 of which he served as fire chief. While in the fire service, he was a certified extrictication insturctor and taught Auto Extrications for local and state firemen. He was the recipient of the North Dakota Community Leadership Award in 1999, the Extrication Society's Award in 2000, and the American Red Cross American Hero Award in 2003. After retiring from the department in 2018 he was inducted into the North Dakota Firefighters Hall of Fame.
William C. Ptacek
1976 OHS Graduate
Bill graduated from Oakes High School in 1976 where he was an active member of the high school band and also went on to two national and one International Science Fair. While still in high school he began playing with the James River Band, a band he would play with locally for many years. Bill graduated from NDSSS in Tool and Die-Making in 1978 and a few months later opened his own business, Kustom Machine, Inc. at the age of 20. Bill was a private pilot, a hot air balloon pilot, and enjoyed traveling immensely. His love of mechanical music and his skills as a machinist soon came together allowing him to become of the top reproductionists of Edison’s tinfoil phonographs. Bill’s reproduction was used to play the oldest known recorded human voice at Stanford University after its discovery.
2000 OHS Graduate
Tom graduated from Oakes High School in 2000 where he was a multi-sport athlete, National Honor Society member, and class president. He received the Wendy’s High School Heisman award and was a finalist for the Class B Mr. Wrestler award his senior season. Tom was a 3x state wrestling finalist, winning the state championship in 1999.
Tom obtained his BA in Criminal Justice from the University of Jamestown. While in Jamestown, he became a two-time academic and athletic All-American wrestler. He was inducted into the University of Jamestown Hall of Fame in 2019.
Tom began his career in public service with the ND Highway Patrol in 2004. He currently serves the agency as the Chief of Operations.
Tom is a 2012 graduate of Leadership in Police Organizations and a 2016 graduate of the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command. He also received a master’s degree in management from the University of Mary.
Tom continues to stay active with sports as a volunteer youth wrestling coach.
Art ConklinInducted 2022
OHS Principal 1983 - 1990
OPS Superintendent 1990 - 2013
During his years as an administrator, Art advanced the use of technology in education, not only at OPS, but also regionally. He worked to bring the Internet, computer labs, and ITV system to OPS.
Art was named the SEND Technology Superintendent of the Year and the 2005 National Tech Savvy Superintendent. For several years, he was chairman of the ND Educational Technology Council.
Other leadership roles were president of the NDASA, Southwest Region Superintendent of the year in 1996, 2000, 2003, and chairman of the Sheyenne Valley Special Education Unit. In 2012, he was awarded the Friend of Counseling award by the ND Counseling Association.
After retirement, Art continued to serve the Oakes community as OEI board member/president and on the City Council. He earned a BS in math and MS/Specialist degrees in educational administration from NDSU.
Inducted 20221974 OHS Graduate
Brigadier General Dave Anderson (USA Retired) graduated from North Dakota State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Science and Math and commissioned as an Army Engineer Officer in 1980. During his career, Dave has had many military assignments, including serving as the Commander of the 142nd Engineer Combat Battalion during its deployment to Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom from April 2003 to April 2004. He graduated from the U.S. Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania in 2007. In 2011 Dave was inducted into the NDSU Military Science Hall of Valor. Dave retired from the North Dakota National Guard after 34 years of service, having served in multiple assignments of increasing responsibilities culminating in his appointment as the Army Commander, North Dakota National Guard. In 2019, Dave was appointed by Governor Doug Burgum as one of the first five members of the North Dakota Ethics Commission where he continues his service to the state of North Dakota.