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January 17, 2007 :: Johnson Sworn In as Eighth Chancellor of the State System of Higher Education

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Dr. Glen D. Johnson was sworn in today as the eighth chancellor of the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education. Johnson succeeds Dr. Phil Moss, vice chancellor for academic affairs, who has been serving as interim chancellor since July 2006.

Thanking the State Regents for the appointment, Johnson assured them that he is ready to tackle the challenges ahead.

“We are determined to work together as a state system to produce more graduates who have the skills they need to compete in the changing global economy. To do this, we must be willing to embrace significant change,” said Johnson.

According to Johnson, Oklahoma is fortunate to have a governor and legislature that value higher education and are willing to invest in it.

“Higher education is the economic engine that drives the state and gives individual students career opportunities,” said Johnson. “One of my roles is to be certain that our state’s leadership and citizens understand that their investment in higher education is a wise one. We must be more accountable, more transparent and better explain how we are contributing to the economic goals of the state.”

State Regents Chairman John Massey said he thinks Johnson will be an invaluable asset to the State Regents organization.

“Glen Johnson is the right person at the right time,” said Massey. "He will be a great communicator of our message to the Legislature and people of Oklahoma. His experience in Oklahoma higher education will allow him to effectively address the mission of the State Regents.”

Grateful for the investment in higher education made by the governor and state Legislature last year, Johnson said he looks forward to working with lawmakers this year as higher education seeks a $1.19 billion budget.

“Last year’s appropriation has already resulted in improvements that our students experience every day,” said Johnson. “However, there is still much to do. In the next few months, I will be a tireless spokesman for the system of higher education and advocate our needs to lawmakers.”

Johnson has been a force in higher education since he was appointed president of Southeastern Oklahoma State University in 1997. He spearheaded major initiatives including individual attention to students; active learning and partnership; total development of students; effective use of technology; and promotion of economic development, scholarship and culture.

Before his appointment as SOSU’s 16th president, he served as director of public policy and adjunct professor of law at the University of Oklahoma College of Law. He also served in the Oklahoma House of Representatives from 1982 to 1996 and was speaker of the house from 1990 to 1996.

A native of Okemah, Johnson was an honors graduate from OU, with a bachelor’s degree in political science, and received a Juris Doctor degree from OU’s College of Law. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa at OU. Johnson has been established as a leading spokesman for higher education both in southeastern Oklahoma and northern Texas, as well as throughout the state of Oklahoma.

Photo of Chancellor Johnson taking the oath of office (JPEG, 1M)

Photo of Chancellor Johnson giving his speech (JPEG, 1.1M)