Jennie Teass Allman '67
Jennie Teass Allman '67 earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Radford College, now Radford University, with the intention of a long and wonderful career as a teacher. Although she taught for only two years, Allman still identifies herself as a teacher and has continued to support her community in roles such as Chairman of the Bedford County School Board.
Allman used her teaching skills to obtain her first job in corporate America as an educational representative with IBM in Roanoke. That position led to a business analyst role as marketing support representative. Then she moved to Dallas, Texas to serve IBM in its marketing department.
Allman returned to Roanoke to marry Bill Allman in 1973. She was offered a position with Norfolk and Western as assistant manager of administrative planning. She describes her time with the railroad as "an exciting opportunity to work with some of the best business minds in our country." She was promoted to director of office automation soon after the merger of Norfolk and Western and Southern Railway. In 1987, she left Norfolk Southern to pursue some entrepreneurial projects but was quickly rehired by the company as a consultant.
Allman became interested in golf courses when she and two other partners purchased Seven Springs in Chesapeake, Va. That venture led to the purchase of Ivy Hill Golf Club in Forest, Va., the construction of the River Course in Pulaski,Va., the renovation of the golf course at Oakwood Country Club in Lynchburg, Va., and then to a management contract at Poplar Forest Golf Course.
Allman and two other partners purchased Oakwood Country Club in 2010, and she became the operating partner. "Operating companies are moving targets and require attention to detail by every employee. But they are fun because you are creating something that exists only because investors are willing to take a chance in the economy, and then dedicated employees are willing to work hard to get the results," says Allman.
Her alma mater will always be special to her. She and a group of fellow graduates are making a difference for Radford students. She says, "the values reinforced at Radford College through such mentors as Bonnie Hurlburt have spun the fabric of my life. I am most proud of my membership in The Golf Society of Radford College. This group was first just friends getting together to laugh and have fun. After several years of just having fun, our Radford heritage kicked in and we wanted to do something good as a result of our time together. To combine those two objectives, we created a scholarship that grows each year as we renew our friendships on the golf course." Allman and her friends believe that a scholarship is a great way to make sure that Radford values live on.
Allman encourages young people to not miss the joys of life while working hard to make a difference in the world. She admits that as she prepares for her seventh decade, it is clear that the only thing she will leave behind is her influence on others.