Osteen, Mathews Earn Human Environmental Sciences Alumni Awards

Sissy Osteen, left, is a department head at Oklahoma State University, and Brandon Mathews is founder and owner of BLM Strategies LLC.
Tabitha Hudspeth

Sissy Osteen, left, is a department head at Oklahoma State University, and Brandon Mathews is founder and owner of BLM Strategies LLC.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Sissy Osteen, department head and associate professor at Oklahoma State University, and Brandon Mathews, founder and owner of BLM Strategies, have been named alumni award winners by the School of Human Environmental Sciences in U of A's Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences.

Osteen, head of OSU's Department of Human Development and Family Science, was named Outstanding Alumna, and Mathews, whose BLM Strategies assists small businesses and nonprofits with strategic planning and implementation, was named Outstanding Young Alumnus.

They were recognized at HESC's Second Annual Alumni and Friends Reception Oct. 3 at the Don Tyson Center for Agricultural Sciences.

Osteen earned bachelor's (home economics) and master's (clothing and textiles) degrees from the U of A. She also earned an educational specialists degree in counselor education from the University of South Carolina and a Ph.D. in human environmental sciences from Oklahoma State.

Her research focuses on how individuals and families make decisions that impact their resources and how education can influence their choices. Her major emphasis areas are homebuyer education, credit reporting and scoring, money management and financial literacy, but also with a background in clothing and textiles, food service management, counseling and family relations.

Mathews earned his bachelor's degree from the U of A in human development and family sciences in 2013. He also earned a master's degree from the U of A Clinton School of Public Service in 2015.

Before creating BLM Strategies in 2018, he held positions of community development coordinator, regional gifts coordinator and major gifts officer with Arkansas Foodbank, and as a development associate with the U of A for Medical Sciences.

He has also served as Little Rock's bicycle and pedestrian project manager and as coordinator for the Jane B. Gearhart Full Circle Food Pantry on campus. He is currently serving on the regional steering committee for CREATE Bridges, which is focused on economic development in Fulton, Izard and Sharp counties, and works with the Mammoth Spring Chamber of Commerce.

About the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences: Bumpers College provides life-changing opportunities to position and prepare graduates who will be leaders in the businesses associated with foods, family, the environment, agriculture, sustainability and human quality of life; and who will be first-choice candidates of employers looking for leaders, innovators, policy makers and entrepreneurs. The college is named for Dale Bumpers, former Arkansas governor and longtime U.S. senator who made the state prominent in national and international agriculture. For more information about Bumpers College, visit our website, and follow us on Twitter at @BumpersCollege and Instagram at BumpersCollege.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2.7 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.


Robby Edwards, director of communications
Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences
479-575-4625, robbye@uark.edu


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