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2022 WTC Distinguished Alumni Award

Dave Appleton WTC '82
Jody Nix WTC '73

The Western Texas College Foundation named Dave Appleton and Jody Nix as the 2022 recipients of the Western Texas College Distinguished Alumni Award. The prestigious award recognizes outstanding alumni that demonstrate leadership in their chosen profession and distinguish themselves through service to their community.

“We’re very pleased to honor these two alumni who represent the best of Western Texas College,” said Dr. Barb Beebe, Western Texas College President.

Appleton attended WTC from 1980 to 1982 before he started rodeoing professionally. He qualified for the PRCA National Finals Rodeo eleven times. In 1988, Appleton became the first Australian to win a world rodeo championship when he won rodeo’s ultimate title: 1988 World Champion All-Around Cowboy. In 2016, he received rodeo’s highest honor when the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association inducted him into their Hall of Fame. Today, Appleton works in the service side of the Oil and Gas Industry as the Manager of Business Development and Corporate Sales for Grady Rentals/ProCoil Tubing & ProFlow LLC.

Nix attended WTC from 1970 to 1973 before he went on to record music with Bob Wills at age 21. In 1975, the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City gave him a Western Heritage Wrangler Award for his outstanding contribution to western music on the album Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys for the Last Time. In 2008, Nix and the Texas Cowboys represented the state of Texas at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington DC and played at the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts. He continues to play for crowds of fans around the great state of Texas today.

“Dave and Jody join the ranks of WTC’s distinguished alumni that continue to inspire our students,” Beebe added.

Beebe presented the awards at the Red Dirt Soiree on Thursday, April 14, 2022. The Distinguished Alumni Award is the highest honor granted to an alumnus of WTC.

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