Allison D. Garrett became chancellor of the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education in November 2021 following a national search. Before assuming the role of chancellor, Garrett served as the 17th president of Emporia State University, which set retention, graduation rate and fundraising records during her tenure. While serving as ESU’s President, Garrett served on the NCAA’s Board of Governors and led the Division II Presidents’ Council.
Prior to executive leadership positions in public and private higher education, she worked for more than a decade at the Walmart Stores, Inc. corporate offices, holding the positions of vice president and general counsel for the corporate division and vice president of benefits compliance and planning. In those roles, Garrett led the corporate-level legal services in a wide range of areas including securities, mergers and acquisitions, tax, intellectual property, information technology and international law. She also led benefits plan design, open enrollment and compliance, as well as communications with Walmart’s workforce.
Garrett holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Oklahoma Christian University, a juris doctorate from the University of Tulsa College of Law and a Master of Laws in securities regulation from Georgetown University.
Chair of the Day
Michael C. Turpen is a shareholder in Riggs Abney Neal Turpen Orbison & Lewis Oklahoma City Law Firm. He is a member of the Business & Commercial Law, Criminal Law and Government Law & Politics practice areas.
Mr. Turpen earned a Juris Doctor from The University of Tulsa, served as Muskogee County District Attorney from 1977 to 1982 and was elected Attorney General for the state of Oklahoma in 1982. He has been a partner at the firm since 1987.
He remains politically active and appears weekly on Oklahoma City’s award-winning public affairs show, “Flashpoint.” He is a national public speaker, having keynoted conferences of the National Association of Attorneys General, the Fourth Federal Judicial Circuit, and the National Family and Juvenile Judges’ Association.
Mr. Turpen argued before the United States Supreme Court in 1985. He served as President of the Oklahoma District Attorneys Association, Vice President of the National Organization of Victim Assistance (NOVA), and Vice Chairman of Oklahoma’s Crime Commission.
Mr. Turpen is a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association. He is a member of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma City, is happily married to Susan, has three adult children and is the proud grandfather of Wren.