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April 10, 2013

Graham Masonic Lodge gifts $15,000 for Blinn scholarship

Scholarship endowed in memory of Oliver and Virginia Wagner

Graham Masonic Lodge #20

The Blinn College Foundation recently accepted a $15,000 gift from Graham Masonic Lodge #20 of Brenham to establish an endowed scholarship in memory of Master Mason Oliver Wagner and his wife Virginia.

The scholarship, established in honor of the Wagners’ commitment to aiding those in need, is open to Washington County residents without regard to major. Preference in awarding the scholarship will be given to students with a Masonic connection.

“This scholarship is a fitting tribute to two individuals who dedicated themselves to civic involvement and understood the importance of education to our community’s future,” said Blinn Foundation Director Joe Al Picone.

Wagner graduated from Texas A&M College in 1942 with a degree in electrical engineering. Because of a medical deferment, he went to work for Westinghouse Corp. in Pittsburgh in support of the war effort. After World War II, he accepted a position with Petrolite Corp. and worked in various locations around the country. While working in Port Arthur, he met his wife-to-be, Virginia Kleinfelder, and they were married in 1953. Subsequent moves with Petrolite included assignments in Rome, London and Frankfurt, where Wagner built the company's international business. He retired and moved to Brenham in 1993.

Wagner was a 50-year member of the Masons and served as chaplain of Graham Lodge #20. He was also a member of the Round Top Rifle Association, served on the board of the Winedale Foundation and was a 10-year board member of the Northeast Washington County Water Supply Corp. He was also a member of numerous professional organizations.

The Foundation supports programs and activities that enhance the quality of education for Blinn College students and expand the educational opportunities for the entire community. While raising funds is an important function, the Foundation also seeks to heighten community awareness of the mission and accomplishments of the College and to promote excellence in education.

For more information on the Foundation and its mission, contact Picone at jpicone@blinn.edu or 979-830-4159. A complete list of endowed scholarships available to Blinn students can be found at: www.blinn.edu/CatalogPDF/Scholarships.pdf.

PHOTO – Blinn Foundation Director Joe Al Picone (left) presents Charlie Droddy of Graham Masonic Lodge #20 a plaque commemorating the lodge’s establishment of a new endowed scholarship at Blinn College. Droddy is joined by (back row, from left) Tres Masser, J.W. Burchfield, Greg Phillips and Clifford Brisbin.