ADA — Howard Barnett, Tulsa, is seeking office of Oklahoma state treasurer. Barnett, who once served as chief of staff for the former Governor Frank Keating, is a Tulsa businessman who said his success in the private sector and previous government work has prepared him for the position.

"During my career, I have led companies that have shown tremendous growth, have attracted and deployed capital from out of state and have employed many Oklahomans," Barnett said. "I have overseen the development of a reorganization plan of a state agency when I was Secretary of Commerce and Director of the Oklahoma Department of Commerce. I have helped develop state budgets and worked with the legislature and most state agencies while I served as Chief of Staff for governor Frank Keating."

Barnett, father of two daughters and the trustee of a multi-million dollar foundation with his wife, Billie, also has been active in community endeavors, serving as President of Leadership Oklahoma, working in senior leadership positions with the Oklahoma Academy for State Goals and as a still active board member and a past chairman of the Tulsa Chamber of Commerce.

"In my time at the Chamber, the Department of Commerce and the Governor's office, I have been involved in economic development in all of its aspects. I truly believe that I am uniquely qualified to serve as the next Treasurer of Oklahoma," he said.

Barnett also said as the state's chief investiment officer, the Treasurer has a duty to make sure the state's monies are invested well and safely.

"The treasurer should also be an advocate for sound fiscal and investment policies for all state and state-related funds," he said. "Let me give you a concrete example. The state is facing a looming crisis with several of its retirement plans, in particular the Teachers Retirement System. The treasurer is a member of the Oklahoma State Pension Commission, which advises the legislature and the plan administrators. I believe that I can bring unique insight and be an impartial advisor on how to deal with these concerns."

Barnett said Oklahoma's next treasurer must be prepared to help guide the state into its prosperous next century, a role that he said he is prepared to fill with experience and trust.

"The office of State Treasurer is too important — and can play too pivotal a role in the future of our state — to simply be used as a holding position. The public can have confidence that I will never succumb to pressure to use the office for political gain. I only want to serve the state and be a small part of the prosperous century I am certain will come."

For more information regarding Barnett, visit www.barnettfortreasurer.com.

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