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Wes Watkins Technology Center recently celebrated the retirement of Superintendent Wade Walling recognizing his 45-year career in education. Beginning in 1977 at Ninnekah Public Schools as a construction trades instructor for at-risk students, Walling discovered how rewarding it could be to help people find purpose and passion in their careers. He later served at Caddo-Kiowa Technology Center coordinating on-the-job training, work-based learning experiences, and CareerTech student organization activities. Later, he became the Director of Business and Industry Services, then Assistant Superintendent. In 2012, he came to WWTC as the Superintendent. Walling was awarded the Oklahoma Vocational Association Outstanding Administrator Award in 1987, the National Career & Technical Education Equity Council Leadership Award in 2009, and named the OASA District 20 Superintendent of the Year in 2020.


Walling states that he has learned so much from each superintendent he has worked with and is appreciative of the mentoring they have provided throughout his career. One of the biggest lessons he has learned is, “If you teach, teach with passion. If you don’t teach, help those who do teach with passion.” Attributing his success to “teachers teaching and students learning,” Walling’s proudest moments have been seeing students grow professionally and personally, and the pride they have when graduating.


In attendance at the retirement reception was Senator Roger Thompson who presented Mr. Walling with a citation, Congressman Wes Watkins, Wes Watkins Technology Center’s namesake, and his wife, Lou.


Mr. Walling would like to thank the dedicated faculty, staff, Board of Education, and administration at Wes Watkins Technology Center for the tremendous efforts to make WWTC a 27-time recipient of the Gold Star School of Excellence Award as recognized by the Oklahoma Association of Technology Centers. He plans to enjoy his retirement by spending time with his family and enjoying his four grandchildren.

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