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Jason Koegler

Vice President of Institutional Advancement, 
West Liberty University 
Wheeling, 38

When other West Virginia children were running through neighborhoods, nearby woods or in city parks, Jason Koegler was running about Oglebay Park. 

"I had a pretty unique childhood," Koegler said. "My father worked for Oglebay Park, on the grounds." 

After a few years of running around Oglebay and even landing his first job there, Koegler graduated from Wheeling Park High School. He went to James Madison University where he would meet the woman who would later become his wife, Sarah. 

"We dated there and then she moved off to California," Koegler said. "In 2001, I moved out to meet her out there. She was a teacher in Oakland."

Koegler started working for the Boudin Bakery, the oldest company in San Francisico. The family-owned business made sourdough bread. 

While he was in California, Koegler finished his degree at Sonoma State University, right in the middle of wine country. Koegler and his wife, a Long Island native, lived there for nearly seven years, eventually having their first child.

When the second child was on the way, Koegler started to re-think California.

"When she became pregnant with our second son, it became pretty obvious that the cost of living and the distance from our family was too much for us," Koegler said. 

They made the journey when she was about eight months pregnant, Koegler said. She eventually got a job at Teach for America that allowed her to work at home. Koegler would get an opportunity at West Liberty University in Wheeling shortly after arriving back to his home state.

"It just worked out tremendously. I was very happy to get a job as a development officer for Liberty in the fall of 2007," Koegler said. "I bought a house and we had two boys. Over the last seven years, I worked my way up to vice president of advancement."

Koegler works with many of the branches of the university that deal with external communicating West Liberty's message. He said he is proud to be able to help work toward improving his hometown. 

Kogeler said he also enjoys golfing, skiing, traveling, camping and exploring West Virginia in his spare time. His sons are Campbell, 7, and William, 5.