In the depths of the Great Depression, a group of student leaders and university administrators saw a great need to improve campus spirit. Their solution was to create a unique organization of “Thinkers, Believers, and Doers in and about The Ohio State University.” This group has prospered throughout the last 75 years, making unparalleled contributions to the physical and cultural growth of The Ohio State University.
The founders, young, active men with a tremendous interest in all aspects of campus life, began meeting in 1933. They believed in leaving their community a better place than they found it and exemplified that belief by a lifelong commitment to the University. Their names were as follows: Edward S. “Beanie” Drake, Charles W. Ebersold, John B. Fullen, Howard L. Hamilton, James C.B. Handley, Fred J. Milligan, William F. North, Leo Gordon Staley, and Oscar L. Thomas. Today, membership is set at fifty men and women: thirty-six students and fourteen members of the faculty and staff of the university.
As early as the 1934-35 school year, the group’s projects began to involve significant financial commitments. Looking forward to even larger undertakings, the organization decided to file with the State of Ohio as a non-profit corporation. As far as it is known, Ohio Staters, Inc. is the only local student organization to be incorporated.
In 2002, the organization expanded with the formation of the Ohio Staters Alumni Society. The Ohio Staters Alumni Society is comprised of former students, faculty and staff members of Ohio Staters who wish to continue to serve the University, as well as reconnect former members who have long since gone their separate ways since attending Ohio State.