Thousand Oaks Alumni Excellence Awards Bestowed

to Bane, Barrett, Beck and Fauver


      Lonnie Bane         Rolnad Barrett     Dena Beck         Joseph Fauver

                        Lonnie Bane                                                          Dr. Roland Barrett                                                              Dena Beck                                                           Dr. Joseph Fauver


Remarkable career achievements by four notable Peru State College graduates will be recognized in April at the annual Thousand Oaks Alumni Excellence ceremony, according to Peru State College President Dr. Michael Evans.

The guests of honor at the event on campus on Tuesday, April 18 will be Lonnie Bane of New Braunfels, Texas; Dr. Roland Barrett of Norman, Okla.; Dena Beck of Minden; and Dr. Joseph “Seph” Fauver of Omaha.

An award ceremony for the honorees will be held at 2 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center on the college campus with a reception to follow. The public is invited to attend.

Bane, a 1980 graduate, will represent School of Professional Studies. Barrett, a 1977 alumnus, is the selection for the School of Education. The Graduate Program representative will be Beck, who obtained her master’s degree in 2008. Fauver, a 2013 alumnus, is the School of Arts and Sciences choice.

“These honorees represent the kind of excellence Peru State College is known for,” said Peru State President Michael Evans. “They have reached impressive levels of success, and we are delighted to recognize them with this award.”

The Thousand Oaks Alumni Excellence program, established in 2018, is sponsored by the Peru State College Foundation. Recipients must have demonstrated exceptional service to the College or community and/or outstanding achievements in their career.

Candidates are nominated to, and their achievements compiled by, the Peru State College Foundation. Top selections are forwarded to the Deans of the respective academic areas for review, then reviewed by Foundation staff and a team of Peru State alumni. A list of finalists is forwarded to President Evans and members of his cabinet for final approval.


Lonnie Bane

School of Professional Studies

A native of Nebraska City, Lonnie Bane had on-the-job training in business while he attended Peru State in the mid-late 1970s. He 

and his wife Darla owner and operated a clothing shop in Nebraska City while he was a full-time student. He graduated in 1980 with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration.

Upon graduation Bane was hired by Frito Lay as an employment and human resources manager in Frankfort, Ind. His next stop was with Singer-American Meter in Nebraska City and Philadelphia, Pa., followed by a variety of senior HR positions for Mobil Oil Corp, working in Illinois, Virginia, Saudi Arabia, and Texas.

Bane’s HR career continued to advance with appointments at firms in Indiana and Texas until landing a post as Senior Vice President for HR with the former America West Airlines (now part of American Airlines) in Phoenix for four years. The next seven were spent at a $3 billion global offshore oil and gas drilling company, Houston-based Pride International, where Bane served as Chief Human Resources Officer and Chief Administrative Officer.

In 2011, when Pride International was acquired, Bane left to start his own Executive Coaching and HR Strategy Consulting firm, coaching "C" suite executives in the gas and oil industry.  He operated Bane Coaching & Consulting for five years.  During this time, he also serves as a principal consultant for HrQ Inc., with offices in Houston, Austin, and San Antonio, Texas.

Bane also spent three years serving as chairman and chief executive officer of The Sierra Institute, a global Executive HR Association with members from around the world.  He retired to his home outside of New Braunfels in 2016.  He now spends his time doing some commercial real estate development and raising cattle at his ranch in Shiner, Texas.

Dr. Roland Barrett

School of Education

It’s a safe bet that the song “Boomer Sooner” isn’t on many favorite playlists in Nebraska, but it’s been music to the ears of Oklahoma University’s Dr. Roland Barrett for 35 years. 

Roland is the son of the late Peru State vice president Dr. Clyde Barrett (’56) and Mrs. Betty (Neil ’57) Barrett of Friendswood, Texas. He grew up in Peru and graduated from Peru State in 1977, bound for a career in music education. Barrett has created a national reputation in his chosen field.

Barrett was the Henry Zarrow Presidential Professor and Professor of Music Theory at OU before retiring last July. He was director of the Oklahoma University School of Music for six years. He has more than 300 published original works and arrangements for symphonic band, chamber ensembles and marching bands to his credit.

Barrett’s compositions have been featured on National Public Radio and the USA cable television network and at several national competitions and conventions.

He joined OU in 1987 as assistant director of bands, a position he held for 17 years, and was promoted to professor of music theory and composition in 2001, a post he held for 16 years. His primary teaching responsibilities focused on 20th century topics and both undergraduate and graduate theory and composition. 

Barrett continues to serve as primary musical arranger for the Pride of Oklahoma marching band. He and his wife, Marie, live in Norman, Okla.

Dena Beck

Peru State College Graduate Studies

A commitment to improving the lives of rural Nebraskans is the hallmark of Dena Beck’s career and fits in perfectly with the role and mission of Peru State, Nebraska’s oldest college. Beck is the 2022 Thousand Oaks Alumni Award winner, representing the PSC Graduate Studies program.

Both a native and a current resident of Minden, Neb., Beck is an Affiliated Funds Development Coordinator with the Nebraska Community Foundation. NCF was established in 1994 by a group of visionaries determined to empower communities to grow and prosper. 

Beck works from her home office near Minden to provide technical assistance to NCF affiliated funds in south central and southeast Nebraska. Through philanthropy, NCF helps communities develop high quality of life, strong economies, and empower local leaders to bring about positive change.

Before joining NCF, Beck worked for another highly respected rural development group, the Center for Rural Affairs. She was senior project leader and business specialist with its Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP). Beck served Center for Rural Affairs for 12 years. It was during this time (2008) that she obtained her Master of Organization Management degree from Peru State, in entrepreneurial and economic development. 

For the previous five years, Beck managed the Minden Chamber of Commerce and Kearney County Economic Development Agency. She earned her undergraduate degree from Kansas State University. Beck, her husband David, and her family live near Minden.

Dr. Joseph Fauver

School of Arts and Sciences

 Dr. Joseph “Seph” Fauver (’13) has already made his mark in the science field, and the Assistant Professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s Department of Epidemiology is only getting warmed up.

Upon completing his doctorate in microbiology from Colorado State University, Fauver joined Washington University (St. Louis, Mo.) for two years as a postdoctoral research associate. He spent the next two years at the Yale School of Public Health as a postdoctoral fellow and an Associate Research Scientist from 2019-2021. 

While at Yale, Fauver dedicated considerable time and effort to the global effort to combat the COVID pandemic. He collaborated directly with officials from the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Football League (NFL) – and directly with Peru State College, providing guidance and counsel to PSC officials in its development of policies and procedures to address the outbreak.

As an epidemiologist, Fauver has a particular interest – as have others before him at Peru State – in mosquito-borne pathogens. Fauver’s research lab at UNMC studies the genomic epidemiology of mosquito-borne pathogens, COVID-19, and Neglected Tropical Diseases such as hookworm. 

Fauver resides in Omaha.