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Turpen To Address 2014 ECU Fall Graduates On Dec. 13

Mike Turpen, chair of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, will be the keynote speaker at East Central University’s 2014 fall commencement exercises at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 13, at the Kerr Activities Center.

Bachelor’s degrees will be awarded to 232 students while 95 others will obtain their master’s degrees during the ceremony.

Turpen, a champion for education in Oklahoma, is perhaps best known for his weekly appearances as a political analyst on “Flashpoint with Turpen and Humphreys,” which can be seen on KFOR, channel 4, in Oklahoma City.

Turpen was elected attorney general for Oklahoma in 1982 and has been a practicing partner in the law firm of Riggs, Abney, Neal, Turpen, Orbison and Lewis in Oklahoma City since 1987.

Other than being a political pundit and attorney, Turpen has a deep commitment toward education in Oklahoma. In recent months, he has toured the state raising funds for university scholarships. Earlier this year, Turpen was on the ECU campus and successfully helped raise more than $55,000 for scholarships, a majority of the funds going toward the Nikki Stonecipher Memorial Scholarship.

He is the author a new book, “Turpen Time – the Wit and Wisdom of Mike Turpen.” In the book, he talks about everything from nocturnal meetings in the White House with his friend and President Bill Clinton, to a first kiss somewhere between the swing set and dog house.

His book is designed to teach life lessons and features many of his one-liners, called Turpenisms. A popular Turpenism is “If you’re throwing mud, you’re losing ground.”

Turpen has served as the chairman of the Oklahoma Democratic Party. He made a bid for governor of Oklahoma in 1986, losing in the Democratic Primary to David Walters.

Turpen graduated from the University of Tulsa, where he received his bachelor of science degree in history in 1972. He earned his Juris Doctorate Degree from the University of Tulsa, College of Law in 1975.

After law school, Turpen joined the Muskogee County District Attorney’s Office as the chief prosecutor and then first assistant district attorney. In 1976, Turpen was elected as the district attorney for Muskogee County and served in that capacity until 1983.

He was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2010 to highlight a long list of awards and achievements. In 2008, he received the Oklahoma Arts Council Governor’s Award for Community Service; Treasurers for Tomorrow Award  from the Oklahoma Health Center Foundation; and the Urban Pioneer Award from the Plaza District Association.   

He was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the President’s Advisory Council on the Arts at the Kennedy Center in 1992. In 1986, he was the recipient of the National Foundation for the Improvement of Justice Award and was honored by the National Organization for Victim Assistance as one of 10 Outstanding National Leaders in the Field of Victim Rights over the past decade. These are just a few of the many honors and awards that Turpen has earned.

His wife is Susan and they reside in Oklahoma City. They have three children – Sean, Patrick and Sarah. Mike is a member of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma City, where he is currently active as a teacher for the confirmation class and on the WPC Foundation Board of Directors.


Candidates for BACHELOR’S DEGREES are listed by their hometown or current residence:

ADA: Nashea Abram, Zachary Adams, Michael Allen, Anali Almodovar, Nathan Austin, Aileen Barton, Stephanie Bayne, Joshua Benard, Srijana Bhandari Kharge, Nabin Bhatta, Amanda Bird, Teresa Buretta, Cailee Canada, Eric Carmichael, Tracy Chiles, Anthony James Cloutier, Mary Cox, Maura Culver, Melissa Diacon, Lam Dinh, Krystyan Dorsey, Francesca Dumas, Charlynn Estes, Angela Foster, Leslie Foster, Lillian Gantt, Adam Gibson, Newakis Girdley, Nishakar Gopali, Chad Gray, Shakila Green, Kayla Gurley, Rejina Gurung, Sheela Gurung, Acacia Hainsey, Julie Harrel, Steven Harris, Kaylee Heck, Dylan Hendricks, Chaylum Hogue, Keysha Hogue, Katelyn Holmes, Stephen Hover, Salvador Jasso, Ashley Johnny, Lance Keenan, Shane Kimbrell, Cameron King, Mary LaMack, Reece Lewis, Jessica Linn, Christopher Lutrell, Alika Maharjan, Kelsey Martin, William Martin, Guillermo Martinez Mendoza, Brenadah Mays, Taylor McDonald, Whitnee Meadows, Kaylie Mills, Tyler Mills, Jennifer Morris, Taylor Nasu, Aubrie Northcutt, Shelby Owens, Charles Palmer, Roshan Pancha, Kendra Parker, Payton Patton, Melissa Perez, Breann Pinley, Bianca Pogue, Benly Ramos, Amanda Roundtree, Daniel Rowe, Kristy Scott, Kshitiz Shrestha, Monica Shrestha, Alison Siweckyj, Amber Smallwood, Destiny Smith, Evan Stallings, Kayla Stevens, Michael Stevens, Tammi Stick, Kyle Straughn, Holly Suman, KaCee Thompson, Pushkar Timilsina, Jodi Turtle, Donald Wegley, Joshua White, Kortney Williamson, Teyler Williston, Jennifer Wingard, Alexander Winton, Brandon Wright, Stacey Zulu

ALLEN: Clifford Gilliam

ANTLERS: Consuelo Splawn

ARDMORE: Rhonda Allen, Krystal Antwine, Patricia Boles, Kaitlyn Garrison, Lee Hare, James Havens, Kristen Hetzel, Kayla Kester, Krystal Lewis, Alisha Lopez, Ramona Perez, Dillon Potter, Taylor Rudd, Douglas Stephens, Kelly Underwood

ASHER: Amy Eckart-Gregg

ATOKA: Chrystle Moore

BLANCHARD: Kristen Birdsill

BRAGGS: Garrett Kizzia


BYARS: Sara Haight

CARNEY: Jessica Tyler


CHOCTAW: Lauren Huff

COALGATE: Sahara Jump

COMANCHE: Elizabeth Clift

DAVIS: Toby Long, Jay Nunley, Easton Rogers, Molly Trimmer

DEL CITY: Adam Maxey

EDMOND: Subash Adhikari, Sujata Bohara, Siavash Khodadadian, Gina Mengwasser


EUFAULA: Lisa Edge, Jesse Jocoy


FRANCIS: Coty Dildine

HARTSHORNE: Krystal Collins

HENRYETTA: Tarra Christy, Heather Konsure, Janis Hart, Alice Rawls, Lia Runion

HUGO: Ashlyn Stafford

KONAWA: Phyllis Duck

LINDSAY: Amber McCleskey

MACOMB: Rebeka Stephenson

MADILL: Kayla Williams

McALESTER: Martin Barr, Kristen Carlin, Shaquille Kinchion, Sarah Lanham, Melissa Locke, Draysen Murdaugh, Erica Riley, Alexandria Tucker

McLOUD: Kelci Estep

MEEKER: Kelcie Badley

MIDWEST CITY: Allicyn Farris

NOBLE: Megan Hart

NORMAN: Heather Horner, Erin Phillips, Brittani Pollock, Billy Reinhart, Trey Tahsuda

OKLAHOMA CITY: Ken Berry, Erin Burton, Jorge Carrizales, Jane Karanja, Jameel Whitney

PAOLI: Stephanie Duncan

PAULS VALLEY: Kathryn Cozort, Casey Fowler, Lauren Huggans, Toni Livingston, Micaela McCurley, Jessica McNeill, Jessi Miller, Jasmine Quinonez

QUINTON: Maecy Paters

RATTAN: Christopher Brown

RINGLING: Shannon Hall

ROFF: Jessica Stewart

SEMINOLE: Charity Dillon, Landon Glass, Yu Han, Jennifer Mattson, Kelci Quisenberry

SHAWNEE: Elisabeth Collard, Denise Dean, Dean Ferdig, Jessie Randall, Debby Sharp, Steven Sturgis, Charleen Wade


STONEWALL: Samantha Cannon, Kelsie Romines, Lois Sweat, Susan Van Horn

STRATFORD: Robbie Hatton

STRINGTOWN: Stephanie Self

SULPHUR: Grant Bates, Theresa Braden, Trey Craig

TECUMSEH: Joshua Coats, Misty Stiles

TISHOMINGO: Vanessa Vecchio, Kayla Wood

TULSA: Samantha Dalton

TUPELO: Chesna Henry, Trevor Sutton

WAGONER: Jaylea Thompson

WILBURTON; Randi Brown, Melonie Jackson, Crystal Toland

WISTER: Lydia Speake

WYNNEWOOD: Jessica Parker, Miranda Willis

ANCHORAGE, Alaska: Kelli Reed

CALHAN, Colo.: Richard Dillard

HIALEAH, Fla.: Robert Buitrago

MIAMI, Fla.: Yasmani Mosquera

KANEOHE, Hawaii: Megan Waiki

ARLINGTON, Texas: Rasesh Pote-Shrestha

FAIRVIEW, Texas: Austin Crisler

FORT WORTH, Texas: Cady Murphy

HURST, Texas: Surendra Chapagain

LANCASTER, Texas: Deon Criss

ROUND ROCK, Texas: Ethan Gold

SAN ANTONIO, Texas: Pramila Napit

TYLER, Texas: Bethany Green


Candidates for MASTER’S DEGREES are listed by their hometowns or current residence:

            ADA: Michaela Barger, Ashley Cothren, Brianna Davis, Holly Flowers, Lisa Frederick, Lauren Hicks, Suzanne Ivory, Marcia Jack, James Jones, Benjamin Lewis, Aaron Manuel, Casondra McConnell, Wendy McKibben, Christina Mead, Nkefua Ngassa, Tamra Pacillo, Antonine Peek, Stacy Prewitt, Marissa Renes, Maryna Sweeney, Lauren Tancik, Tiffany Thompson, Chioma Umunna, Nikki Utt, Terry Vandergrift, Hong Zhang

            ARDMORE: Christopher Dvorak, Richard Hackney, Robert McGehee, Osie Neasbitt, Karen Tadych

            CALVIN: Roxanne Loyless

            CENTRAHOMA: Charity Eidson

            CLAYTON: Tara Hairrell

            COALGATE: Joy Burris, Sarah Robbins

            DAVIS: Florence Long, Nikki Patton

            DURANT: Aleisha Brewer, Cody Gilmore

            EDMOND: Nicholas Pettit

            EL RENO: Whitney Stevenson

            ELMORE CITY: Jennifer Earp

            ENID: Shane Murray

            FREDERICK: Kimberly Vanderburg

            HARTSHORNE: Christina Baker

            HUGO: Michele Shaffer

            KINGSTON: Amanda Brister

            MADILL: Courtney Leming

            MARIETTA: Gerald Mason

            McALESTER: Amy Burnam, Brenda Burnside, Jessica Gregg, Amy Lewis, Lloyd Robinson, Jayme Spruce-Clifton, Angela White

            MIDWEST CITY: Chris Collier, Brandon Hawkins

            NOBLE: Renee Haley

            NORMAN: Austin Ardrey, Glenn Overton

            OKEMAH: Ronnie Titsworth

            OKLAHOMA CITY: Russell Coats

            OWASSO: Andrea Vaughan

            PAULS VALLEY: Jennifer Brenholtz

            POTEAU: Nathan Billy, Amber Madume, Cheri Mathews, Paula Midgley, Belinda Westfall

            SEMINOLE: Sharon Bryant, Lincoln Dearing, Richard Morgan

            SHAWNEE: Jonathan Gibbs, Vanessa Jones, Annie Keehn, Karen Phillips, Nathan Smith

            STONEWALL: Steven Sweat

            STRATFORD: Deborah Estes

            STUART: Jonathan Booth, Felicia Wilson

            SULPHUR: Desa Smith, Benjamin Warren

            WAYNE: Penny Thompson-Massey

            YUKON: Anthony Douglas, James Woodard

            BELLFLOWER, Calif: Joey Zrinzo

            IOLA, Kan.: Ryan Mahoney

            LAS VEGAS, Nev.: Andrew Herrod

            DALLAS, Texas: Cassandra Nordie

            GALVESTON, Texas: Christopher Joblin

            GRAPEVINE, Texas: Chance Stevens

            IRVING, Texas: Caitlin Bradley



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