By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief
On Tuesday, June 28th, Oklahomans will travel to the polls for the statewide primary elections. Both the Democratic and Libertarian Parties have opened their primaries to Independent voters this year, but only registered Republicans can vote in the Republican primary.
More than 400 candidates have filed for office in Oklahoma this filing period, more than in any presidential year in recent history, according to Oklahoma State Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax. The following is a brief summary of each candidates' qualifications. For their policy views, click on their names to be redirected to their campaign web sites.
Incumbent United States Senator James Lankford has the Republican nomination secured with no challengers, as does Democratic nominee Mike Workman. Libertarian voters will choose between Robert T Murphy and Dax Ewbank for their candidate. There are also two independent candidates: Sean Braddy and Mark Beard.
- Murphy has ran for election to US House of Representatives five times and has never garnered more than 25% of the vote.
- Ewbank previously ran in the gubernatorial Republican primary in 2014 and came in third with 9% of the vote.
Current Congressional District 1 Representative Jim Bridenstine is up for reelection and is challenged by Tom Atkinson and Evelyn L. Rogers for the Republican nomination. No Democrats filed for the race. The winner of the Republican nomination will square off against Independent David Matthew Hullum.
- Bridenstine acquired a BS at Rice University before serving nine years as a US Navy Pilot. He worked as a Defense consultant at Wyle Laboratories while attending Cornell University and working towards an MBA. He was the Director of the Tulsa Air and Space Museum from 2008 to 2010 and was first elected to Congress in 2012. He ran unopposed in both the primary and general elections of 2014.
- Atkinson has never ran for public office prior to this election. He served in the US Air Force, was a federal prosecutor in the Department of Justice, and later a bankruptcy judge for the Northern District of Oklahoma. He founded Okie Crude Company in 1985 and holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Southern Methodist University and a law degree from Oklahoma City University.
- This marks Rogers's eleventh campaign for various State and Federal offices, she has yet to secure more than 16% of the vote. She holds a BS in healthcare management from the University of LaVerne, and an MA in practical theology from Oral Roberts University.
Sand Springs City Councilman Brian Jackson is challenging incumbent State Senator Dan Newberry for the District 37 Republican nomination, as is Paula L. Patterson.
- Newberry was first elected in 2008 and won reelection in 2012 with 67% of the vote. He holds a diploma of Charismatic Ministry from ORU as well as a Liberal Arts BS with focus on Leadership and Organizational Management. He works as the Vice President of Real Estate Operations at TTCU: The Credit Union.
- Jackson was the youngest ever representative elected to Sand Springs City Council and is currently serving his third term. He is the Development Manager for Junior Achievement of Oklahoma and has previously served as the Sand Springs Vice-Mayor. He is a Marketing graduate from Oklahoma State University.
- This is Patterson’s first election campaign. She is an OSU graduate with an International Business Degree with Finance and Marketing Minors.
There are also three contenders for the District 37 Democratic nomination in outgoing Sand Springs Superintendent Lloyd Snow, Andrew Nutter, and Cory Gage.
- Snow has served as a Superintendent for 36 years, including 16 at Sand Springs. He is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, a recipient of the Oklahoma Foundation Medal of Excellence in School Administration. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Educators Hall of Fame in 2013, was the Oklahoma Superintendent of the Year in 1995 and has twice served as the President of the Oklahoma Association of School Administrators. This is his first time running for political office.
- Nutter and Gage are also first time political candidates and neither maintains a website and have limited information available on Facebook or other platforms.
District 66 State Representative Jadine Nollan has one challenger in Emily G. DeLozier for the Republican nomination. Dianna Phillips, wife of former City Councilman Michael Phillips, has the democratic nomination locked up.
- Nollan was first elected in 2010 and won reelection in 2012 with 66% of the vote. She was unopposed in 2014. She holds a BS from OSU, is married to Sand Springs City Councilman Phil Nollan, and previously spent eleven years on the Sand Springs School Board. She was the Executive Director for Sand Springs Community Services from 2007-2010 and was the Pastor at C3 Ministries for Word of Life Fellowship from 2006-2010.
- Delozier holds a BS in International Business from the University of Tulsa.
Donald Newberry, Ron Phillips, and Mary Atkinson are running for County Court Clerk as Republicans.
- Newberry is a US Air Force veteran who served as an Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialist. He holds an Associates in Business Administration from TCC, a Bachelors in Psychology from Liberty University, and a Masters of Jurisprudence in Indian Law from TU. He is currently the Title Research Manager in the Tulsa County Assessor’s office.
- Phillips is the Special Projects Director for the Tulsa County Clerks Office and holds a degree in Business Administration.
- Atkinson holds a BA from Drake University and is on the Board of Directors of Tulsa Camerata.
Rex Berry and Arthur Jackson are vying for the Democratic nomination for County Sheriff.
- Berry served in the Tulsa Police Department from 1973 till 1999 and retired as a Corporal. He served as a Security Management instructor in Afghanistan, was a civilian police office in Kosovo, and an Inspector of Training Facilities in Iraq. He is a US Air Force veteran and also served in the US Army Active Reserves with the Criminal Investigations Division. He holds an Associates in Police Science.
- Jackson is a US Army veteran who has served in a supervisory position at the David L Moss Criminal Justice Center since 2001.
Vic Regalado, the incumbent from Sand Springs, is being challenged by Russell Crow and Luke Sherman for the Republican nomination for County Sheriff.
- Regalado was just elected to the position of Tulsa County Sheriff in a special election earlier this year. He previously was the lead homicide detective for the Tulsa Police in 81 cases. He supervised a Special Investigations Gang Unit and served on the Tulsa Police SWAT team for nearly a decade. He received the Medal of Valor in 2004. It’s worth mentioning that he is currently being sued by Tulsa newspaper The Frontier for failure to comply with the Oklahoma Open Records Act in regards to not releasing County jail footage. He maintains the footage does not fall under Open Records requirements.
- Sherman is a 23 year veteran of the TPD and has served as a tactical operator and assistant team commander on the Tulsa SWAT team. He is currently a sergeant leading the department’s Fugitive Warrant’s Unit and is on the U.S. Marshal’s Violent Crimes Task Force.
- Crow is an eighteen year veteran of the Tulsa Sheriff’s Office and Tulsa Police Department. He also owns a private investigation firm in Tulsa.
Michael Willis and Nancy Rothman are running for the County Clerk nomination from the Republican party.
- Willis holds a BA in Public Affairs and Administration from OU and is working towards a Masters of Public Administration. He currently serves as the Chief Deputy County Commissioner and Public Information Office and is a member of the TPD Reserve.
- Rothman serves as the Chief Deputy in the County Clerk’s Office, the President of the Board of Directors for “Neighbor for Neighbor” in Tulsa, and is a Board Member of the Tulsa County Juvenile Justice Trust Authority.
Deanna Vincent is challenging Karen Keith for the Democratic nomination for County Commissioner District No. 2.
- Keith has been the County Commissioner since 2008 and serves on various local boards and organizations. She was the President of the Rotary Club of Tulsa and serves on the Oklahoma Historical Society board of directors. She is a graduate of OSU, served as a KJRH anchor and executive producer of Oklahoma Living.
- Vincent does not appear to maintain a website, facebook page, or presence on any web forum that we could find.
Jonathan Grable and Sand Springs’s Josh R. Turley are running for the Republican nomination.
- Grable is the CEO of a local real estate management company and previously worked for Arrow Trucking Company as the Truck Assignment Coordinator. He’s served in the Oklahoma State Senate for the past six years and is an Eagle Scout.
- Turley is a 24-year veteran of the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office and is the founder of the Risk Management program for the TCSO.
This article was originally published in the June 26, 2016 Sandite Pride News Weekly Digital Magainze. Sandite Pride News does not endorse political candidates and strives to provide non-partisan unbiased reporting of elections. Any perceived slant towards an individual is entirely unintentional.