GOVERNOR KEVIN STITT ANNOUNCES SECRETARY OF TRANSPORTATION, SECRETARY OF DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION & AD
Oklahoma City, Okla. (January 18, 2019) – Governor Kevin Stitt announced today the appointment of Tim Gatz as Secretary of Transportation and the appointment of David Ostrowe as Secretary of Digital Transformation and Administration, two cabinet positions that require Senate confirmation.
“This cabinet is about developing a team of Oklahomans who are ready to do things differently in state government and pursue bold ideas that can make Oklahoma a Top Ten state,” said Gov. Stitt. “I asked Tim Gatz to serve as Secretary of Transportation because he is the right leader for us to take a fresh approach to developing our state’s infrastructure, one that is fiscally responsible and continues to attract job creators to Oklahoma. David Ostrowe has a history of bringing new life to stagnant companies, and I welcome his thought leadership in bringing state government in to the 21st century with how we are delivering services effectively and efficiently.”
Tim Gatz has served as the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority (OTA) since June of 2016. He previously served as Deputy Director of the Oklahoma Department of Transportation (ODOT) from 2013 to 2016. He has more than two decades of service with ODOT, beginning his career with the agency as a Drafting Technician in 1990. Gatz was instrumental in the development of ODOT’s project management methodologies and Eight-year Construction Work Plan. Gatz earned a bachelor's degree in Landscape Architecture from Oklahoma State University in 1989 and is a registered professional landscape architect.
“I am humbled, honored and excited to serve Governor Stitt as he leads our great State towards real and measurable improvement," said Gatz. "Safe and efficient transportation infrastructure of all types supports our families, communities, and commerce and his vision will contribute directly to our near term success and to the prosperity of generations to come. I look forward to a collaborative and innovative role working with the excellent team he has assembled."
David Ostrowe will serve on the governor’s cabinet in an unpaid capacity, placing a strategic emphasis on digital transformation in the delivery of services across all agencies. Ostrowe will also provide oversight of state financial institutions, similarly executed by the cabinet title_t “Secretary of Finance” seen in previous administration.
Ostrowe will continue in his role as the President and CEO of O&M Restaurant Group. In 1999, Ostrowe launched his first business in Oklahoma City. That business grew from a one-man shop to what it is now, a $65 million, multi-unit and multi-state operation with 1,000 employees. Ostrowe currently serves as the Western Regional Chair Emeritus for Young Presidents Organization and was the Oklahoma City Chair Emeritus. He has also been a Board member of Allied Arts for 14 years. Previously, Ostrowe was a member of Burger King Corporation’s Restaurant Counsel for eight years and Chair Emeritus for “The Growth Group,” a Burger King franchisee association made up of large quick service restaurant developers throughout the United States. Ostrowe is also a past Professor of Business, teaching two to three classes per semester at OU’s Price Business School.
“As Secretary of Digital Transformation and Administration, I look forward to working alongside the Stitt administration in order to bring efficiency and effectiveness to government operations and give back to a State that has given me so much,” said Ostrowe.
Endorsements for Tim Gatz as Secretary of Transportation:
“I have known director Gatz for the better part of three decades. We have worked together rather closely over the last two decades. And I would not hesitate to say that his reputation is beyond reproach as far as his ethics and loyalty to the people of Oklahoma. He is the one who has helped so much in the innovation of moving transportation forward both at ODOT and at the turnpike authority. And he has done a great job recently at the TPA leading that agency to one of the biggest expansion programs in the state of Oklahoma. He will make a great addition to the governor’s cabinet and I know that he will make us all proud.”
-Gary Ridley, Former Oklahoma Secretary of Transportation
“I think Tim will make an outstanding Secretary of Transportation. I watched him rise through the ranks in the Department of Transportation because of his cool head and ability to execute plans well. I also observed him as he took over the turnpike authority and launched one of the largest construction programs in Oklahoma. He understands the transportation business and he will make an excellent secretary and advisor to the governor.”
-Neal McCaleb, Ambassador for the Chickasaw Nation and Former Oklahoma Secretary of Transportation
Endorsements for David Ostrowe as Secretary of Digital Transformation and Administration:
“Oklahoma will see swift benefits from the broad vision and deep business sensibilities David Ostrowe displays when tackling big issues and maximizing opportunities to advance. Beyond his impressive private sector track record as an entrepreneur and business builder, I’ve witnessed first-hand the innovation David brings to education in OU’s Price College of Business. For years, David has taught aspiring business students to leverage the power of markets and technology to become the dynamic leaders necessary for Oklahoma’s best future. David has the enviable combination of being both a thinker and a doer who brings hard work and fresh perspectives to everything in which he invests. Today, the citizens of Oklahoma are fortunate to have David investing his time and talent in such an important role for us all.”
– Daniel Pullin, dean, Michael F. Price College of Business, University of Oklahoma
“It’s been my great honor to get to know David Ostrowe very well over the past 10 years and my privilege to consider him a close personal friend and admired businessman. David operates his personal and professional matters with the highest degree of integrity and is a great visionary and leader. When he takes something on, he gives it 110% all in effort and I could not be more excited for Oklahoma and The Stitt Administration to have David serving in his new capacity as Secretary of Digital Transformation and Administration. It is just one more example of how Governor Stitt is surrounding himself with capable, experienced and very accomplished individuals to help him move Oklahoma towards becoming a top 10 State in all important, measurable aspects. David does not need another ‘job’, but his willingness to serve his State at this time and in this capacity makes me very hopeful that we can accomplish great progress for the benefit of all citizens of Oklahoma!”
– Chad Dillingham, CEO of Dillingham Insurance
"David Ostrowe will be a fantastic Secretary of Digital Transformation and Administration. His experience in turning around businesses is unmatched. Culture, systems, protocols, outcomes and accountability will be the cornerstones of his reforms. Oklahoma has no chance of becoming a top 10 state without serious attention being paid to all of these critical fundamentals."
– Rick Nagel, Managing Partner of Acorn Growth Companies
“It is exciting to me to think about what digital technologies have done for the private sector and how lessons learned can be applied to state government. Accountability, efficiency and communication are just a few of the areas impacted with successful digital deployments. However, a digital strategy requires exhaustive planning and implementation. Governor Stitt has wisely tapped Mr. David Ostrowe to lead this digital transformation in Oklahoma. Mr. Ostrowe’s experience as an entrepreneur is invaluable when considering how we can make government more efficient via technology. Digital technologies are reshaping the world. Oklahoma has an excellent opportunity under the new Stitt administration to create value and long term positive results. It starts now.”
– Mims Talton, CEO of Flogistix’s
“David gets things done. His creativity is matched only by his focus on details. His leadership results in major transformations of organizations of all kinds. David turns ‘we can’t’ into ‘we will’.”
– Renzi Stone, CEO of Saxum
David Ostrowe is an excellent choice for leading the digital transformation that our state needs. As an experienced and successful businessman, he will help drive the efficiency and effectiveness that is so needed in state government.”
– Chip Fudge, Chairman of Claims Management Resources