SHAWNEE, Okla. – Gordon Cooper Technology Center mourns the passing of Superintendent Bob Perry who passed away Saturday.
Bob Perry, a long-time member of the Gordon Cooper Technology Center family, was selected by the Gordon Cooper Board of Education to be Superintendent in the fall of 2018 and officially took over the position in July of 2019.
As Superintendent, Perry helped oversee several projects including the construction and completion of the Marty Lewis Public Safety Center, the new Cosmetology facility on Gordon Cooper’s Shawnee campus, a new precision machining program on Gordon Cooper’s Seminole campus as well as Gordon Cooper Technology Center’s 50th Anniversary.
Perry, a Shawnee native, began his tenure in Career and Technology Education when he came to Gordon Cooper in 1995. Over his 26-year career, he served the school and the surrounding communities in several capacities including Assistant Superintendent of Business and Industry Services, Director of Adult Education and Business Development Coordinator.
During his tenure at GCTC, Perry also taught more than 150 classes at Gordon Cooper and across the state. Topics of those classes included career building, creative writing, customer service, diversity, history, leadership, management, marketing, problem solving, publishing, strategic planning and team building.
He worked tirelessly to advance Career and Technology Education in Oklahoma. As a problem solver, Perry formed relationships with the area businesses that created advocates for the career tech system as a whole. He was instrumental in developing a career tech relationship with former Speaker of the House Kris Steele and continued discussions on skill center training as recently as January of 2021.
In addition to his work at GCTC, Perry also formerly served as a board member and/or officer for Chandler Chamber of Commerce, Gateway to Prevention and Recovery, Habitat for Humanity, OKPACE/CBITS, Pioneer Library System, Pottawatomie County Historical Society, Pottawatomie County United Way, Shawnee Credit Bureau and Shawnee Kiwanis Club. Perry gave numerous presentations on diversity, dynamic thinking, leadership and marketing to many area, state and national career-tech associations. He also served as an adjunct marketing professor at Oklahoma Baptist University.
Prior to his time at GCTC, Perry worked in the private sector at his family’s local business, Perry & McGee Furniture Company, as Sales & Advertising Manager and General Manager. The Shawnee High School graduate received his undergraduate degree from Oklahoma Christian University and a master’s degree from East Central University.
Away from Gordon Cooper, Perry spent time with his family including his wife, two children and three grandchildren. He also penned several historical fiction novels and plays including The Broken Statue, Mimosa Lane, Brothers of the Cross Timber, Guilt’s Echo, Return from Wrath, The Nephilim Code, Lydie’s Ghost, For the Greater Good, Abigail’s Story, Redemption, The Beast of Chatsworth and Stories from the Heartland. His plays include The Broken Statue, Working Girls and A Cross Timber Adventure. Perry also wrote three non-fiction books including Leadership Dynamics, Spiritual Renewal: Transforming the Mind and The Great Railroad Strike of 1922: A City in Crisis.