The Edmond Sun

Local News

March 21, 2013

Fallin appoints members to Blue Ribbon panel

State has 7,000 on developmental disabilities waiting list

OKLA. CITY — Gov. Mary Fallin appointed the members of a Blue Ribbon Panel for Developmental Disabilities. Fallin created the panel by executive order Thursday, and announced its formation last month at the Governor’s Conference on Developmental Disabilities in Norman.

Two Edmond residents are among the 11 appointees.

There are almost 60,000 men, women and children with intellectual disabilities in Oklahoma. Currently, the state has a waiting list of more than 7,000 people requesting services from the state’s Developmental Disabilities Service Division.

The new panel will develop a comprehensive plan to support individuals with intellectual disabilities and their families, starting with recommendations to address the state’s growing waiting list for DDSD services. It also will research and analyze best practices for the comprehensive delivery of high quality services.

“Our goal as a state is to be a resource that allows men, women and children with intellectual disabilities the ability to realize their full potential, to live their own lives, and to do so as independently as possible,” Fallin said. “This new panel is composed of people with personal and professional experiences that can help us to pursue this goal and improve services.”

Panel members include:

• James Nicholson of Oklahoma City. Nicholson is retired from the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, where he served for more than four decades. He served most recently as the Director of DDSD. He will serve as chairman of the panel.

• Ann Trudgeon of Oklahoma City. Trudgeon is the executive director of the Oklahoma Developmental Disabilities Council (ODDC). She has been with the ODDC since 1989. She will serve as an ex officio member on the Blue Ribbon panel.   

• State Sen. Greg Treat of Oklahoma City. Treat was elected to the Oklahoma Senate in 2011 and represents District 47. He currently serves as the vice chairman on the health and human services appropriations subcommittee.

• State Rep. Jason Nelson of Oklahoma City. Nelson was elected to the Oklahoma House of Representative in 2009 and represents District 87. He currently serves as the chairman on the A&B Human Services committee. Nelson is also on the conference committee on human services and human services committee.

• Wanda Felty of Norman. Felty is the community leadership and advocacy coordinator for the Oklahoma LEND (Leadership Education for Health Care Professionals Caring for Children with Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities). She is also on the board of directors at the Oklahoma Developmental Disabilities Council to which she was appointed by Gov. Fallin in August 2012 and she has a daughter with an intellectual disability.

• Rene’ Daman of Edmond. Daman is the director of the Oklahoma Autism Network at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. She has been with the Department of Rehabilitation Science since 1999. She has provided training and technical assistance for providers who support children with autism and their families in early intervention, educational and community settings.

• Michael Upthegrove of Norman. Upthegrove is an adult with an intellectual disability. He previously served on the Oklahoma Developmental Disabilities Council from 2001-09.

• Deanna Banta of Shawnee. Banta is an adult with an intellectual disability and is president of Oklahoma People First, a nonprofit self advocacy group that promotes equality for people with developmental disabilities.

• Robin Arter of Duncan. Arter is the executive director of Duncan Group Homes, a nonprofit agency that provides assistance for people with intellectual disabilities. She is on the Governor’s Advisory Committee at the Oklahoma Office of Disability Concerns.

• Nancy Ward of Oklahoma City. Ward is co–chair of the Oklahoma Self Advocacy Network, which seeks to strengthen the self-advocacy movement in Oklahoma and to increase the inclusion and independence of people with disabilities. She is an adult with an intellectual disability.

• Deborah Decker of Norman. Decker is a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and a parent of a child with an intellectual disability. She is the current president of the Sulphur Springs Special Needs Retreat and a parent leader at, a support network for parents with children with special needs.

Text Only
Local News
  • Women aided in Afghanistan, Rwanda through AT&T

    AT&T renewed its support for the PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS program Wednesday by making a $125,000 contribution to the program at Lakeside Women’s Hospital in Oklahoma City.
    AT&T has been a major supporter of Peace through Business since its inception in 2007, said Steve Hahn, the new president of AT&T Oklahoma.

    July 23, 2014

  • Salvation Army pantry closes until September

    Due to an increase of need, The Salvation Army in Oklahoma County has distributed all of its food supply. July 23 was the last day of the food pantry operations. In preparation for the move to the Center of Hope at 1001 N. Pennsylvania, The Salvation Army Client Choice Pantry will not resume operations until September.

    July 23, 2014

  • Payne Co. crash sends Guthrie man to hospital

    A two-vehicle crash in Payne County sent a Guthrie man to a local hospital, a trooper stated.
    Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper James Ritze stated a 2005 Jeep SUV and a 2013 Ford pickup were about a mile east of Perkins headed west on State Highway 33. When the pickup slowed for a truck pulling out of a private drive, the SUV struck the rear of the pickup, Ritze stated.

    July 23, 2014

  • 7-11 Second Street to get new 7-Eleven

    The amended site plan for a new 7-Eleven Convenience Store was approved by the Edmond Planning Commission this week by a vote of 4-0.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Guard adds jobs, revenue to Oklahoma

    During a Wednesday morning press conference at Joint Force Headquarters, members of the Guard touted the findings of an in-depth study addressing impacts the organization has in areas including gross state product, employment and tax revenue.

    July 23, 2014

  • Large party turns into police house search

    A citizen’s tip about an excessive amount of foot traffic led to the discovery of 76 grams of marijuana, digital scales and firearms in an Edmond home, an incident report states.

    July 23, 2014

  • Gas State gas price plummets 18 cents in 25 days

    Abundant domestic refinery production is behind a steep 18-cent plunge in Oklahoma gasoline prices at the pump during the last 25 days, AAA reports.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • A Q&A on ‘Obamacare’ Court Rulings

    On Tuesday, two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings on the legality of tax subsidies being provided to people who bought “Obamacare” health insurance policies in Oklahoma and 35 other states.
    Here’s a look at the rulings’ potential impact in Oklahoma.

    Q: I’m confused. What did the courts rule today?
    A: A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals circuit in Washington, D.C., decided that the government can’t provide tax subsidies for Affordable Care Act plans purchased in 36 states where the federal government is operating the health insurance exchange. Oklahoma is one of the 36 states. A few hours later, the U.S. Court of Appeals circuit in Richmond, Va., issued a conflicting ruling that upheld the legality of the health-care law’s tax subsidies.

    July 22, 2014

  • June healthy month for Oklahoma jobs

    Nearly 10,000 new jobs in Oklahoma were created in June, according to the U.S. Labor Department.
    Gov. Mary Fallin said Tuesday the state experienced one of the largest increases in employment in the nation in June. More than 9,600 additional people joined the state’s workforce in June.
    The unemployment rate in June dropped to 4.5 percent, its lowest ratio in six years. June’s rate was down a percentage point from 4.6 percent in May and April, according to the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission.

    July 22, 2014

  • Former OSU line coach having impact on Texas staff

    It was quite possibly the biggest coaching coup of the offseason and Oklahoma State was at the wrong end of it — former Cowboy offensive line coach Joe Wickline joining the staff for Charlie Strong’s Texas Longhorns.
    “It’s always good when you go hire staff and you look at just getting the right people within your program. And, a lot of times, guys know a lot of Xs and Os, but it’s all just about developing a player,” said Strong, Tuesday during the Big 12 Conference Football Media Days. “Joe and I, we’ve coached together at two different places. But just with him being within his conference and knowing the conference, he’s been a great asset.”

    July 22, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Video
Facebook Is Officially A Mobile Company 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Swiftair Loses Contact With Air Algerie Aircraft Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid

If the Republican runoff for the 5th District congressional seat were today, which candidate would you vote for?

Patrice Douglas
Steve Russell
     View Results