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Oklahoma State University
STATE

The official magazine of Oklahoma State University

The Cowboy Way

 

Behfar Jahanshahi, InterWorks founder and CEO, was destined to

be an Oklahoma State University Cowboy. Born and raised in Oklahoma,

he grew up in Student Housing on the OSU campus while both his parents

were students who eventually became professors.

 

“OSU has always been a big part of my life,” Jahanshahi says. “In fact,

I still go to the same barber shop in the Student Union I went to

30 years ago.”

 

Growing up, Jahanshahi was exposed to technology early on. He spent

countless hours in the OSU Classroom Building computer lab.

 

“At that time, they had three computers and two typewriters,” he says.

“I clocked a lot of time in front of those machines.”

 

He got his first computer in elementary school, a Commodore Vic20.

He soon learned to program games and transpose code from paper to his

computer, triggering his love for programming.

 

“The older I got, the more this interest in technology broadened, and it was

almost always related to gaming in some way,” Jahanshahi says.

“Oddly enough, it was through playing these games that I met friends

who would go on to become an integral part of InterWorks’ growth.”

 

 

PLAYING AT WORK

 

Jahanshahi says creating InterWorks never felt like work.

The idea behind the company is simple — deliver quality

information technology solutions while having fun.

 

“Something I’m particularly proud of at InterWorks is that

we employ people from a wide variety of disciplines,” he says.

 

In the IT department, employees may assist clients with data storage

needs, virtualization, or architecting a disaster recovery solution. On

the data side, employees are likely traveling across the country helping

well-known brands gain new insight from their data.

 

“We’re big believers in having fun at work,” Jahanshahi says. “It’s not

uncommon to see people manning the pingpong table, starting a

Nerf war or playing on our InterWorks arcade machine.”

 

COLLEGE SWEETHEART

 

InterWorks has evolved since Jahanshahi founded it in 1996.

Along the way, friends and even his college sweetheart and now

wife, Staci Bejcek, joined the team. While a student at OSU, Staci

helped manage the InterWorks’ finances along with her schoolwork

and part-time job. Today, she runs the accounting department and is

chief financial officer.

 

AT THE TOP

 

InterWorks has been recognized multiple times in the past decade

for its achievements. Jahanshahi was named CEO of the Year

by the Tulsa Regional Chamber of Commerce, and the Journal Record

in Oklahoma City recognized him as Most Admired CEO in 2016.

From 2008–2016, Inc. 5000 has listed InterWorks as one of the

Fastest Growing Private Companies.

 

 

OK FREEWHEEL

 

OK Freewheel is an annual event with over 1,000 riders biking

nearly 500 miles across Oklahoma in one week. A few years ago,

Jahanshahi was inspired to start biking after an employee achieved

dramatic weight loss results bycycling.

 

“It was an inspirational transformation and motivated many others

in our office to start riding,” he says.

 

The InterWorks team for Freewheel had over 20 riders in 2016.

 

“One of the things we like about Freewheel is that it’s

Oklahoma focused,” Jahanshahi says. “We’re a global company,

but we feel a strong commitment to Oklahoma. Plus, it’s just a

fantastic way to discover the beauty and diversity of our state.”

 

 

 

KICKIN’ AND FIDDLIN’

 

Intramural sports consumed much of Jahanshahi’s time in college.

He began playing soccer as a kid and continues to love the game.

 

“Once I arrived at OSU, I was on an intramural team every semester

and even played for the ‘club’ team for a couple years,” he says.

“I was also involved in OSU intramurals in the broader capacity

of refereeing. I enjoyed intramurals so much; it only seemed right

to help out on the offi ciating side. It was a great way to see another

side of the game.”

 

When he wasn’t on the soccer fields, Jahanshahi played violin in

the OSU orchestra.

 

 

 

Interview By Faith Kelley

 

 

More stories like this are available for members of the OSU Alumni Association. STATE magazine is a benefit of membership in the OSU Alumni Association. To join or update your membership go to orangeconnection.org/join or call 405-744-5368. 

 

 

B
ehfar Jahanshahi, InterWorks
founder and CEO, was destined to
be an Oklahoma State University Cowboy.
Born and raised in Oklahoma, he grew up
in Student Housing on the OSU campus
while both his parents were students who
eventually became professors.
“OSU has always been a big part of my
life,” Jahanshahi says. “In fact, I still go to
the same barber shop in the Student Union
I went to 30 years ago.”
Growing up, Jahanshahi was exposed
to technology early on. He spent count
-
less hours in the OSU Classroom
Building computer lab.
“At that time, they had three
computers and two typewriters,” he
says. “I clocked a lot of time in front
of those machines.”
He got his first computer in
elementary school, a Commodore
Vic20. He soon learned to program
games and transpose code from paper
to his computer, triggering his love for
programming.
“The older I got, the more this inter
-
est in technology broadened, and it was
almost always related to gaming in some
way,” Jahanshahi says. “Oddly enough, it
was through playing these games that I
met friends who would go on to become an
integral part of InterWorks’ growth.
B
ehfar Jahanshahi, InterWorks
founder and CEO, was destined to
be an Oklahoma State University Cowboy.
Born and raised in Oklahoma, he grew up
in Student Housing on the OSU campus
while both his parents were students who
eventually became professors.
“OSU has always been a big part of my
life,” Jahanshahi says. “In fact, I still go to
the same barber shop in the Student Union
I went to 30 years ago.”
Growing up, Jahanshahi was exposed
to technology early on. He spent count
-
less hours in the OSU Classroom
Building computer lab.
“At that time, they had three
computers and two typewriters,” he
says. “I clocked a lot of time in front
of those machines.”
He got his first computer in
elementary school, a Commodore
Vic20. He soon learned to program
games and transpose code from paper
to his computer, triggering his love for
programming.
“The older I got, the more this inter
-
est in technology broadened, and it was
almost always related to gaming in some
way,” Jahanshahi says. “Oddly enough, it
was through playing these games that I
met friends who would go on to become an
integral part of InterWorks’ growth.
B
ehfar Jahanshahi, InterWorks
founder and CEO, was destined to
be an Oklahoma State University Cowboy.
Born and raised in Oklahoma, he grew up
in Student Housing on the OSU campus
while both his parents were students who
eventually became professors.
“OSU has always been a big part of my
life,” Jahanshahi says. “In fact, I still go to
the same barber shop in the Student Union
I went to 30 years ago.”
Growing up, Jahanshahi was exposed
to technology early on. He spent count
-
less hours in the OSU Classroom
Building computer lab.
“At that time, they had three
computers and two typewriters,” he
says. “I clocked a lot of time in front
of those machines.”
He got his first computer in
elementary school, a Commodore
Vic20. He soon learned to program
games and transpose code from paper
to his computer, triggering his love for
programming.
“The older I got, the more this inter
-
est in technology broadened, and it was
almost always related to gaming in some
way,” Jahanshahi says. “Oddly enough, it
was through playing these games that I
met friends who would go on to become an
integral part of InterWorks’ growth.”
B
ehfar Jahanshahi, InterWorks
founder and CEO, was destined to
be an Oklahoma State University Cowboy.
Born and raised in Oklahoma, he grew up
in Student Housing on the OSU campus
while both his parents were students who
eventually became professors.
“OSU has always been a big part of my
life,” Jahanshahi says. “In fact, I still go to
the same barber shop in the Student Union
I went to 30 years ago.”
Growing up, Jahanshahi was exposed
to technology early on. He spent count
-
less hours in the OSU Classroom
Building computer lab.
“At that time, they had three
computers and two typewriters,” he
says. “I clocked a lot of time in front
of those machines.”
He got his first computer in
elementary school, a Commodore
Vic20. He soon learned to program
games and transpose code from paper
to his computer, triggering his love for
programming.
“The older I got, the more this inter
-
est in technology broadened, and it was
almost always related to gaming in some
way,” Jahanshahi says. “Oddly enough, it
was through playing these games that I
met friends who would go on to become an
integral part of InterWorks’ growth.”