Paying it back: A story of giving

High school science and engineering courses were never a challenge for Roger Haxby, but that wasn’t the case once he got to college.

“During physics class freshman year, the professor told us to read chapters 1 through 38 and have the odd number problems completed by the end of the week,” Haxby said. “It was quite an eye-opener.”

A native of St. Cloud, Minn., Haxby worked his way through the demanding course work and graduated from the Institute of Technology (now CSE) in 1958 with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. Armed with his new degree, he was hired by Ingersoll Rand where he held a variety of positions in engineering and sales.

“I credit much of my own success to the University. If it weren’t for the degree I received, I don’t know where I’d be.”

During the 1970s when oil was discovered in Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay, Haxby seized the opportunity to move to Anchorage and form a company, which became the Waukesha Alaska Corporation. Now led by his son, the company provides machinery and services, such as compressors, generators, and pumps, for industrial use.

In the past few years, Haxby and his wife, Mary, have sponsored scholarship funds for students coming from St. Cloud, Minn. through the Roger R. and Mary L. Haxby Scholarship. “I consider it payback time for the good fortune that we’ve enjoyed over the years,” he said.

“We have been fortunate to meet with the recipients of these scholarships. They are doing extremely well in a very tough competitive environment, and they will do well in the future. I credit much of my own success to the University. If it weren’t for the degree I received, I don’t know where I’d be,” Haxby said.