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Chickasaw Nation Gov. Bill Anoatubby, a 1972 graduate of East Central University, will be inducted into ECU's Hall of Governors Friday [OCT. 26] during a dedication ceremony at 2 p.m. in the University Center. The ceremony is open to the public.

Anoatubby's portrait and bronze bust will be unveiled and later moved to the atrium of Danley Hall for permanent display. The Hall of Governors includes the portraits and busts of ECU's three other governors, Robert S. Kerr, Ernest McFarland and George Nigh. All are ECU graduates.

Ada Mayor Frank Stout will proclaim Friday as Bill Anoatubby Day, and citations will be presented to Anoatubby on behalf of U.S. Congressman Tom Cole, State Sen. Susan Paddack and State Rep. Todd Thomsen.

The University Chorale, under the direction of Dr. Steven Walker, will perform "Behold! I Set My Rainbow in the Clouds" by Victoria Davison and Rudy Lupinski, adapted from Chapter 9 of Genesis.

A reception will follow the ceremony in the University Center.

Anoatubby has been governor of the Chickasaw Nation since 1987, focusing on providing health care, education, quality housing and academic development. He also has been lieutenant governor, director of tribal health services, director of finance, special assistant to the governor and controller. 

Under his leadership, the Chickasaw Nation has grown from 250 employees and an $11 million budget in 1987 to more than 10,000 employees today and capital outlays of more than $350 million.

Anoatubby and his wife, Janice, have two sons, Brian and Chris, and five grandchildren.

He was named an ECU Distinguished Alumnus in 1995 and was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2004.

He is the 2007 Red Earth Ambassador and the U.S. Small Business Administration's 2007 Minority Advocate of the Year. This year he also has received the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy Outstanding Service to Oklahoma's Children Award and the Oklahoma Heritage Association’s Centennial Leadership Award for Preservation of State and Local History.

Among his numerous civic and community positions are chairman of the Advisory Council to the Special Trustee for American Indians, U.S. Department of the Interior; a member and past co-chairman of the Department of Housing and Urban Development Negotiated Rulemaking Committee; and chair of the Governor's Transformation Advisory Board and the Native American Cultural and Educational Authority.

He is a member of Gov. Brad Henry's Task Force on Mental Health, Substance Abuse and Domestic Violence. Other board memberships include the Oklahoma Academy of State Goals, Inter-Tribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes Executive Committee, Jasmine Moran Children's Museum, Oklahoma Centennial Commission, Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Oklahoma Heritage Association, Oklahoma State Fair and Tri-County Indian Nations Development Corporation.

He is a member of the Arkansas Riverbed Authority, the Inter-Tribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes, National Congress of American Indians, Oklahoma Academy of State Goals and the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence.

ECU's Hall of Governors also includes:

Robert S. Kerr, a 1915 ECU graduate and co-founder of Kerr-McGee Oil Industries Inc., was governor of Oklahoma from 1943 to 1947 and a U.S. senator, "the Uncrowned King of the Senate," from 1949 until his death in 1963.

Ernest McFarland, a 1915 graduate, was a U.S. senator from Arizona from 1941 to 1953, governor of Arizona from 1955 to 1959 and a member of the Arizona Supreme Court from 1964 to 1970, becoming chief justice in 1968.

Nigh, a 1950 graduate, served four terms in the Oklahoma Legislature, four terms as lieutenant governor and four terms as governor, although two were unexpired terms lasting only a few days. He was instrumental in having Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Oklahoma!" adopted as the state song. He later was president of the University of Central Oklahoma.


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