A scholarship endowment has been established at the Rogers State University Foundation in the memory of David Johansson, who served as director of the Pryor Public Library and passed away last year.
The endowment was established by Dr. Jane Johansson, who is Mr. Johansson’s wife and associate professor of history at RSU in Pryor.
“It is important for me and my family to help future generations of students to attain the dream of a college education in David’s memory,” said Dr. Johansson.
Dr. Johansson specializes in the history of the American Civil War and worked for several years as co-editor of the Papers of Will Rogers Project. She received a master’s degree in library science and doctoral degree in American history from the University of North Texas.
The David H. Johansson Memorial Endowed Scholarship will provide scholarships for future generations of students at RSU in Pryor, said Dr. Danette Boyle, RSU vice president for development.
To qualify for the scholarships, students must have achieved a 3.0 or above grade point average during high school. They must enroll in at least six credit hours per semester at the RSU campus in Pryor, maintaining at least a 3.0 grade point average, and complete a community service component.
David Johansson was born on October 20, 1964, in Athens, Georgia, to Dr. Gordon Johnson and Mrs. Nancy Johnson. The Johnson Family moved to Houston, where David graduated from Clear Lake High School in 1983. He earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in library science from the University of North Texas.
David married M. Jane Harris on June 3, 1989, and the couple lived for several years in Denton, Texas. During this time, the couple changed their last name to “Johansson,” the original spelling of the family surname.
In 1994, the City of Pryor hired Johansson as director of the public library, and he served in that position until 2005. While serving as library director, Internet access was provided to the public for the first time, a number of computers were obtained for patron use, the literacy program was restarted, the Spanish language book collection and the children’s book collection was expanded and a library building expansion was planned.
After he left the library in 2005, he started a computer business and enjoyed repairing computers, solving software problem and tutoring.
Johansson believed strongly in the value of community service. As a Red Cross volunteer, he helped Hurricane Katrina refugees at Camp Gruber and assisted at a Pryor community shelter during the ice storm in January 2007. He participated in many community service projects. He was a member of the Pryor Rotary Club and the First Methodist Church of Pryor. He also started the Dictionary Project in Pryor, as a service project of the Pryor Rotary Club.
Over the years, he enjoyed bicycling, cooking, solving puzzles, traveling and weaving. On June 19, 2007, David died in Tulsa at the age of 42.
To contribute to the scholarship endowment, or to receive more information on the RSU endowed scholarship program, contact the RSU Foundation at (918) 343-7773.