henry-p-ibaMr. Iba, as his players and other coaches alike knew him, was perhaps the most highly respected basketball coach of all time. Mr. Iba was the only person to coach three different U.S. Olympic basketball teams (1964, 1968 and 1972.) In 1984 he served as an honorary coach on Bob Knight’s Olympic coaching staff.

While Mr. Iba’s success on the court could be measured in wins and losses, he was tremendously successful off the floor, teaching not only the game of basketball, but also the game of life. Many former players went on to become highly successful head coaches at the collegiate level. Coaches like Jack Hartman, Don Haskins and Eddie Sutton have taken the principles they learned from Mr. Iba and applied them to their professional careers. Former player, U.S. Senator, Bill Bradley, said, “More inspiring and more important to me than the basketball instructions were the hints on how to live a more worthwhile life which were sprinkled throughout his practice sessions, team meetings and casual remarks. Now I understand why men are always proud when they say, ‘Mr. Iba was my coach.’ So am I.”

Other coaches who did not play for Mr. Iba also sought his advice: Bob Knight at Indiana, Mike Kryzewski at Duke and countless others. He always gave of himself to others. He became the first coach to lead his school to back-to-back NCAA Championships as he took Oklahoma State University to national titles in 1945 and 1946. He was named National Coach of the Year both those years. His 767 career victories ranked second best all-time when he retired and now twelfth in the history of the game. At the time of his death in 1993, his 1,105 games coached were more than any other individual. Mr. Iba is the only coach with six or more NCAA Tournament appearances, to make it to the regional finals of that event every year. He coached in four different Final Fours and his teams appeared in the NCAA Tournament in three different decades.

He was known as a master at coaching defense. His OSU Cowboys led the nation in scoring defense seven times during his tenure and were ranked in the top three in that category 18 times.

But it was his teaching for which he was noted and respected. The caliber of the players he turned out is legendary. And he was the consummate gentleman, coach and administrator.

Athletics need more Mr. Iba’s, and perhaps these awards, which bear his name, will inspire others to follow in his footsteps.

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Monday morning, be sure to tune in at 9:00 am to see President Mike Homan and Rotarian Stephanie Vickers Cameron on Good Day Tulsa on channel 8 as they discuss the value of membership and what the future holds for the Rotary Club of Tulsa. ... See MoreSee Less

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Have you met Robert Babcock?

Robert Babcock has a passion for inclusion. “Everyone has a place at life’s table” and he works hard to make sure each person’s contribution is valued, respected and purposeful.

“In this diverse world of ours, it is important to recognize and value our differences and maintain balance. Then we can create a world of synergy which fuels our greatest potential through inclusion,” he said.

Robert is Director of Community Relations for ONE Gas, a natural gas distribution company headquartered in Tulsa. ONE Gas is the parent company of Oklahoma’s largest natural gas utility, Oklahoma Natural Gas, which has been in operation since 1906 serving families and businesses in our great state.

Before he assumed this role, Robert was in the Human Resources Department at ONE Gas, and was responsible for leading Inclusion and Diversity initiatives. Prior to that he created and implemented the “Live Smart” health and wellness initiative at ONEOK.

A graduate of the University of Arkansas with a BA in Geography, he spends time training for marathons and is actively involved in the renaissance of Tulsa and Oklahoma City.
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Next year, Oklahoma's archaic liquor laws will change with the sale of wine in grocery stores; strong, cold beer in liquor stores and on-premises sales of Oklahoma-brewed craft beer. This Wednesday at Downtown Rotary, a panel of distinguished industry leaders will talk about how the new laws are impacting their part of the business and how the average Oklahoman will see changes in the way they purchase alcohol. Come hear Mike Thornbrugh with QuikTrip, Tina Parkhill with Parkhill's Warehouse Liquors and Wines, and Eric Marshall with Marshall Brewing Company share their perspectives. ... See MoreSee Less

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Tulsa’s downtown rebirth was already underway, but when developer Stuart Price and Price Family Properties acquired 13 properties from San Francisco philanthropist Maurice Kanbar earlier this year, that renaissance received a solid shot in the arm. At Wednesday's Club Meeting, Stuart will share his vision for downtown Tulsa and how attracting young professionals will match the growth and vitality of his expanded real estate portfolio. ... See MoreSee Less

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