Bill Lance – Chickasaw Nation

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Chickasaw Nation Leadership Portraits January 18 2017, Michael Scott Photographer, Ada Oklahoma

“Economic Development”

Bill G. Lance, Jr. is the Secretary of Commerce for the Chickasaw Nation and is responsible for the management of all commercial business enterprises of the Chickasaw Nation. The Chickasaw Nation Department of Commerce has more than 6,500 employees and is comprised of more than 60 gaming, hospitality, retail, media, manufacturing, and tourism related businesses.

In addition to his role as chief executive of the Commerce Department, Bill also serves on the board of directors for several other businesses owned by the Chickasaw Nation, including: Global Gaming Solutions, LLC; Sovereign Native Holdco, LLC and related subsidiaries; and Chickasaw Nation Industries. He also serves as a regent of the University of Arts and Sciences of Oklahoma (USAO) in Chickasha, and he is a member of the Board of Trustees for both the University of Oklahoma Foundation and the Chickasaw Foundation.

Prior to his current role, Bill served as Administrator of the Chickasaw Nation Health System, where he oversaw the historic construction of the 370,000 square foot Chickasaw Nation Medical Center, located in Ada, Oklahoma.

Bill received a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Oklahoma, College of Public Health, a Bachelor of Science degree from East Central University and recently became a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. He is also a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma class XXIV.

Bill makes his home in Sulphur, Oklahoma where he enjoys spending time with his wife Sherri and their three children.

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Chair of the Day 


John Kennedy founded Irish Realty in 1978. He began his career in commercial real estate by working for John Kilpatrick as Vice President of Kilpatrick Investment.

Kennedy received a bachelors degree from Oklahoma City University in History and Political Science and a masters degree from Harvard University in Public Administration. He received the 1992 Alumni Achievement award from Casady School. Kennedy was also honored with the “Spirit Award” from Harvard for helping establish a community service program. He received a Tulsa Community Service Council “Dreamcatcher Award” for his efforts in creating the Oklahoma Office of Volunteerism. Preservation Oklahoma recognized him for “Individual Contribution to Historic Preservation” for his work on the First National Center.

Kennedy was appointed Oklahoma Secretary of State on January 14, 1991 and served for three years. He is the youngest to have held the office. Kennedy also served for four months as Interim Secretary of Commerce at the beginning of his term. He was a charter member of the Quality Oklahoma Council. During his tenure, the Secretary of State’s office led the state in fiscal year 1993 with the lowest ratio of employees vs. budgeted employees. The office also led all agencies by returning 40 percent of its budget to the treasury at the end of the fiscal year. The office cut business filing time from four weeks to one day.

He was a member of the board and audit committee of MD Building Products. Kennedy served as a member of the five person State of Oklahoma Cash Management and Investment Oversight Commission. He was also a commissioner on the Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation and the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust. Kennedy served on the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government Dean’s Alumni Leadership Council. Active in the community, Kennedy serves on the boards of directors of the Oklahoma Creativity Project, and the O.U. Fred Jones, Jr. Art Museum. He is the current President of the board for Heritage Hall school and is a past-President of Westminster School. Kennedy coached little league baseball for over twenty years.

He is a native of Oklahoma City and has five sons.


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