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Governor Stitt Appoints Robert J. Ross to the University of Oklahoma Board of Regents

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Governor Kevin Stitt announced today he has appointed Inasmuch Foundation Chairman and CEO Robert J. Ross to the University of Oklahoma Board of Regents.

“Bob Ross is the epitome of a great Oklahoman who has a long history of serving his community,” said Gov. Stitt. “He is passionate about making our state the best it can possibly be, loves the University of Oklahoma and will make sure our Oklahoma values are well represented in this new role.”

Prior to joining Inasmuch Foundation, Ross was an attorney at McAfee & Taft. He is a fourth generation Oklahoman and attended Bishop McGuinness Catholic High School in Oklahoma City before completing his undergraduate at Washington and Lee University. Ross then earned his juris doctor from the University of Oklahoma.

“Serving the University of Oklahoma as a regent is a high honor that comes with great responsibility. As a fourth generation Oklahoman, I have a deep commitment to our state and to the university,” said Ross. “I am incredibly thankful to Governor Stitt for his confidence in me and I am dedicated to ensuring the university continues to focus on producing the next generation of leaders in Oklahoma. I look forward to working with President Harroz and my fellow regents to position OU to excel amidst the changes in higher education and our economy.”

University and philanthropic leaders praised Ross’ appointment.

“Bob Ross is an exceptional choice by Governor Stitt to serve on the OU Board of Regents,” said OU President Joseph Harroz Jr. “He is one of our university’s strongest supporters, and I have had the immense honor of partnering with him, his family, and Inasmuch Foundation in support of our university’s sacred purpose. Bob’s leadership at Inasmuch is pivotal to our state’s welfare, and the impact the Foundation continues to have is thanks to the vision set by Bob. We’re certainly proud also that he is an OU alumnus, choosing to serve his alma mater in this way, and we know his time as a regent will greatly benefit and better our university.”

“I worked alongside Bob Ross for 20 years at Inasmuch Foundation and have known him even longer. His decades of various leadership and service to the state, university and community have prepared him for this moment and make him the best choice to serve OU in all the opportunities that lie ahead,” said Secretary of Public Safety Tricia Everest.

Ross is an engaged member of his community and has served on the board of directors for various groups, including Acorn Growth Companies Advisory Board, Colorado College, Freedom Center of Oklahoma City, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, Oklahoma Public School Resource Center, and the Oklahoma State Fair.

He has also received many awards for his community contributions, including the OU Regents’ Alumni Award in 2009, the Plaza District Association’s Urban Pioneer Award in 2011, the OKC Beautiful Mayor’s Award for Distinguished Service in 2012, the Oklahoma Center for Non-Profits’ Visionary Impact Award in 2013, the United Way of Central Oklahoma’s John Rex Community Builder Award in 2015, the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City Service to Youth Award in 2018 and OKC Friday’s OKCityan of the Year in 2019.

Bob and his wife Heather have a daughter, Lilly, and son, Frank.

If confirmed by the Oklahoma Senate, Ross will replace Michael Cawley and serve a seven-year term expiring March 21, 2029.

Cawley, who served as chair in his final year on the board, kindly requested that he not be reappointed to spend more time with his family.

“Serving on the OU Board of Regents has been a rich and rewarding experience,” said Cawley. “It has been a particular honor for me to have been appointed by a governor whom I hold in such high regard.”

“I understand and respect Mike’s decision,” said Gov. Stitt. “I greatly appreciate the contribution of Mike’s leadership and corporate governance expertise during such an important transitional period for OU.”

“Chair Cawley has demonstrated immense commitment to OU and our purpose,” said Harroz. “Mike wasted no time in his tenure as a Regent. He made an indelible impact, providing steady leadership and counsel these past few years, and we are incredibly grateful for his selfless service to our institution and our students.”

Last Modified on Mar 30, 2022
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