MURRAY, Ky. — The Murray State University Alumni Association will celebrate the class of 1968 on Oct. 26 during the Golden Anniversary Dinner and Banquet with alumnus Ron Beshear serving as the evening’s highlighted speaker.
Beshear, who currently lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, graduated from Murray State in 1968 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and history. He later earned his master’s degree in communications from the University in 1970. While attending Murray State, Beshear said he knew it was time to stretch and grow himself as both a person and a leader.
“I would attribute [my growth] to the teachers and the environment around me — and to having an opportunity to do leadership things,” Beshear said. “I realized that it was up to me. I could have an amazing experience but not if I didn’t put in the effort.”
As an undergraduate student, Beshear’s ambition led him to run for office in the Student Government Association (SGA) as an independent. He was ultimately elected by the student body as the vice president of SGA alongside Mac Anderson, a former SGA president and last year’s Golden Reunion speaker. Through this leadership role, Beshear volunteered on many different committees and planned several events, including concerts by the Righteous Brothers as well as the Supremes with Diana Ross. To this day, Beshear said he considers sitting in the front row at the concerts in Lovett Auditorium as some of his fondest memories.
In addition to being student body vice president and an active member of the Baptist Student Union, Beshear played a part in the foundation of Sigma Nu, a fraternity that used to be active on Murray State’s campus, as the organization’s first president. Through petitioning to become a national fraternity, Beshear was part of the strategic recruitment process that created the chapter on campus. This leadership role stretched him in new ways, he said, teaching him the ins and outs of planning events and the importance of recruitment.
While at Murray State, Beshear also met his wife Dr. Mary (Balch) Beshear during his campaign for vice president. When he first saw her, he said she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. After he won the election, he called her and asked to take her out for a Coke at Jerry’s Restaurant. They ultimately married in April 1969 after Beshear graduated and while Mary was a junior. The couple will celebrate 50 years of marriage this upcoming year.
“The big introductions in life are those that introduce you to your faith, your mate and your calling,” Beshear said. “I think what Murray State did for me was help me find my purpose.”
After graduating from Murray State, Beshear received his insurance license and became the owner and manager of Embassy Apartments in Murray. He continued to pursue his passion for finance with Northwestern Mutual, spending a total of seven years in Murray, seven years in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and 36 years in Cincinnati, Ohio. Quickly moving up in leadership, Beshear spent 22 years running the company’s Cincinnati location. His son Ben and daughter Robin now also work with the company. Beshear currently serves as a mentor to current financial advisors.
Additionally, Beshear and Mary founded Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy, which enrolls approximately 1,500 students each year from preschool to grade 12. They have also both written books, including memoirs that aim to inspire others to look past their circumstances and to hope for the future. Beshear’s speech at the Golden Reunion will follow a similar thematic trajectory as it explores how to make this decade of life the best decade and how to look toward the future without living in the past.
The Golden Anniversary Dinner and Banquet takes place Friday, Oct. 26, at 5:30 p.m. in the Murray Room of the CFSB Center. Register today at murraystate.edu/alumni/
For more information about Homecoming 2018: Field of Dreams, visit murraystate.edu/homecoming or call 270-809-3437.