Governor Stitt Appoints Dustin Hilliary to the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education
Governor Kevin Stitt today announced the appointment of telecommunications industry executive Dustin Hilliary to the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.
Since 2005, Hilliary has served as managing partner for Lawton-based Hilliary Communications, which provides telephone and broadband service to more than 15,000 customers in Oklahoma, Texas and Iowa and has 125 full-time employees.
“I believe that our higher education system exists to train and prepare Oklahoma’s workforce,” said Gov. Stitt. “Dustin Hilliary’s extensive business experience, especially in rural communities, will help ensure our colleges and universities are producing graduates with the skills that Oklahoma companies need.”
Under Hilliary’s leadership, Hilliary Communications has negotiated the acquisition of 22 companies and has been awarded more than $110 million in federal broadband loans and grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Federal Communications Commission.
“I understand the critical role that the State Regents for Higher Education play in the success of our great state,” Hilliary said. “We must ensure all Oklahomans have a path to higher education that is affordable and results in those graduates meeting the needs of tomorrow’s workforce. I’d like to thank Governor Stitt for his confidence in my abilities and I can’t wait to get started.”
Hilliary is engaged in his community and involved in many civic and professional organizations including NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association, Oklahoma Farm Bureau, Oklahoma Cattleman’s Association, Oklahoma Telephone Association, Elgin Schools Education Foundation, Comanche County Memorial Hospital Foundation and the Oklahoma State Chamber.
His appointment was praised by Oklahoma business and higher education leaders.
“Dustin Hilliary is an accomplished leader with decades of experience in the constantly evolving technology business,” said Oklahoma State Chamber President and CEO Chad Warmington. “Dustin is living the real world challenge of trying to grow Hilliary Communications despite the significant workforce challenges we are facing in Oklahoma. His insight will be critically important as we push for greater alignment in the higher education system to better deliver the workers and skills needed by Oklahoma job creators.”
“Dustin Hilliary and the rest of his corporate family have been great partners for Cameron University and higher education,” said Cameron University President Dr. John McArthur. “I look forward to working with him in this exciting new role.”
Hilliary’s appointment is for a 9-year term expiring May 16, 2031 and will become effective May 17 or upon confirmation by the Oklahoma State Senate, whichever is later.