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Stillwater's First News with Bill Van Ness

Conversation opened. 1 read message. FROM THE CITY OF STILLWATER:FROM THE-------------------------FROM THE CITY OF STILLWATER:
-----------------------FROM THE CITY OF STILLWATER:
FROM OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY:FROM Oklahoma State University President Kayse Shrum and First Cowboy Darren Shrum have been named grand marshals of OSU’s 2022 Homecoming festivities by the OSU Alumni Association.FROM OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSFROMM


After an extensive search and vetting of exceptional candidates, the Perry Public Schools Board of Education has hired a new superintendent. Chad Wilson has been named superintendent for Perry Public Schools and will assume responsibilities on July 1.

Wilson has been the superintendent at Woodland Public Schools in Fairfax, Oklahoma for the past two years. Prior to that he was superintendent at Weatherford Public Schools for five years and assistant superintendent at Guthrie Public Schools for four years. Wilson began his 26-year career in education at Perry Public Schools in 1998 as a high school history teacher and boys basketball coach.

While at Weatherford, a class 4A school with a student enrollment of approximately 2,400 and 250 employees, the district passed a $54 million dollar bond issue with an 85% approval from the community to construct two new elementary schools.

“The school board reviewed a large selection of well qualified candidates, and we’re confident Mr. Wilson demonstrates the characteristics, expertise, and personality that the board, staff, and community are seeking,” said Perry Board of Education President, Jason Proctor. “He comes with enthusiastic recommendations from many former board members and administrators at his previous schools. We are looking forward to his leadership.”

Wilson has a bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University and a master’s degree from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. He is a 1990 high school graduate of Fort Cobb High School.

He and his family recently moved back to Perry and built a house. His wife, Maranda (Sheets) Wilson, is a Perry native, and they are excited to continue raising their children in Perry Schools. Their daughter, Payton will be a senior and son, Luke will be entering sixth grade at Perry Elementary.

Wilson shared, “My family and I chose Perry for several reasons. At the top of this list, we want to be in a community that values education, to be close to our family and friends, and most importantly, the traditional values this community holds."



Longtime City Manager Norman McNickle was honored throughout the day May 15th for his more than 46 years of service to the City of Stillwater. The day began with a police retirement walk-out ceremony

followed by a reception at City Hall and ended with multiple accolades during the City Council meeting – including a unanimous vote to name Stillwater’s City Hall as the Norman McNickle Municipal


“This is in honor of his life’s work that spans more than four decades of dedicated service protecting our residents and patrons, developing a solid foundation for economic success, and enhanced quality of

life,” Mayor Will Joyce said. “Norman is a trusted friend, longtime leader and innovator and his impact will last our lifetime – ensuring a more vibrant Stillwater of tomorrow.”

McNickle announced his retirement in February and agreed to stay through approval of the FY24 budget and to assist with leadership transition of his successor, as needed.

“It has been my honor to serve Stillwater and any accomplishments during my tenure are not mine alone. I’m fortunate to have served alongside truly phenomenal people – from those knee-deep in freezing

water to fix a water line to the finance department ensuring we are good stewards of taxpayer dollars, to everyone else,” shared McNickle. “I am grateful to the current and previous Mayor and Councilors

who have allowed me to serve. From here, I look forward to spending quality time with my wife Deb, our children and family, not to mention as much time outdoors as possible.”

During McNickle’s time of service, Stillwater has grown in population by approximately 20k residents. Most recently, he was instrumental in the passage of the first bond election in twenty years, to ensure a

new fire station will be constructed to serve the ever-growing population. The last bond was passed by Stillwater’s voters was in 1999 for the new police building, a project for which McNickle oversaw the

architectural design and construction.

“Since Norman became City Manager, he has maintained his reserve officer status in good standing. It is fitting that his last day of service is the first day of National Police Week,” Police Chief Jeff Watts said.

“We will miss having him here with us every day to provide that depth of knowledge and leadership, but we are extremely happy for him as he embraces this next chapter. We are all better because of his

lifelong contribution.”

City Manager McNickle began working for the City of Stillwater in October 1976 as a patrol officer with the Stillwater Police Department. He worked his way up the ranks in only 11 years, being promoted

to Investigator, Corporal, Sergeant, Lieutenant and Captain before being named Chief of Police in 1987.

He was appointed Public Safety Director then became interim City Manager in 2015, before being named City Manager in 2016. During his term as Police Chief, McNickle was crucial to the Stillwater Police

Department’s accreditation. Under his leadership in 2009, the City of Stillwater received the Oklahoma Municipal League’s Don Rider Award for transparency in municipal government.

“We are grateful to have worked alongside Norman and we wish him and his family the best. He will finally have the opportunity to put his phone on silent and not charged with the weight of the City’s

infrastructure and other emergencies. He has more than earned this time in his life,” Joyce said.

Councilors are working with an outside firm on the nationwide search to fill the position. Assistant City Manager Brady Moore will serve as interim until the new City Manager is named.



Stillwater Public Schools is proud to announce its District Teacher and Support Employee of the Year. Stillwater Middle School English Language Arts Teacher Chloe Andrews has been selected as the Teacher of the Year, and Skyline Paraprofessional Tim Rostad was named Support Employee of the Year.

District Teacher of the Year - Chloe Andrews
Chloe Andrews has been a teacher at Stillwater Middle School since 2018. A Cleveland High School and Oklahoma State University graduate, she first started working with SPS students during her sophomore year of college. While working on a writing initiative for a class, she interacted with students at Lincoln Academy and decided she wanted to be a part of SPS. She changed her career from Family and Consumer Science to English and began pursuit of her teaching certificate. Andrews served as a student teacher intern at Stillwater Junior High with Shaila West in the Fall of 2017, and, following graduation, Andrews was hired for her current position at Stillwater Middle School.

Andrews will go on to compete with teachers from across the state for the title of Oklahoma Teacher of the Year.

District Support Employee of the Year - Tim Rostad
Tim Rostad has been a paraprofessional at Skyline Elementary since August 2021.

A retired sheriff, he holds an associate degree in criminal justice and previously served as a D.A.R.E. officer. In addition to his last two years at Skyline, Rostad worked at Highland Park Elementary School from August 2019 to May 2021. In addition to being named Support Employee of the Year this year, Rostad was recognized as an upcoming retiree.



The Oklahoma Transportation Commission approved a $24 million contract to widen a portion of State Highway 33 in Logan County to four lanes.

The next phase in widening the SH-33 corridor to four lanes will be between Langston and Western Ave. just west of US-177 in Payne County.

SH-33 traffic is estimated at 6,900 vehicles on average per day.

Work is expected to begin in late summer 2023 with anticipated completion by fall 2025, weather permitting. OBC Inc. was awarded the bid.

This phase will add four bridges and the earthwork to build the roadbed for the additional two lanes. The bridges will be over the Cimarron River, Fitzgerald Creek, Wildhorse Creek, and the Wildhorse Creek overflow.

The two new lanes will be completed in a second project currently scheduled for FFY 2025 at an estimated nearly $29 million.

These two projects combined will complete the widening of the corridor between Perkins and Guthrie, which provides a second, four-lane alternate route to and from Stillwater. The projects also will improve safety, visibility, and site distance for traffic traveling SH-33.

Transportation officials said most of this work will occur parallel to the existing highway. Motorists should be watchful for heavy equipment entering and exiting the highway.


Mayor Will Joyce and fellow Councilors have agreed the best way to move forward with possible funding options for a new Animal Welfare facility and other much-needed public safety concerns should be determined by voters on November 14, 2023.

The Animal Welfare facility will be presented as a general obligation bond and the Public Safety District proposition (per SB 838) would be collected in the same manner as ad valorem taxes.

Mayor Joyce included, “the State Legislature has wisely allowed us to diversify our revenue sources, and our community has the opportunity to take action to lessen our reliability on sales tax for essential public safety functions.”

Deputy City Manager Melissa Reames shared that the Public Safety Protection District could be used to purchase police and fire vehicles and apparatus.

Reames said the Animal Welfare facility was inadequate in 1984 when it originally opened and the need for a new facility is just as much a people issue as an animal issue.

“Our Animal Welfare staff are more than adoptions and surrenders, they serve as code enforcement,” included Deputy City Manager Reames. “A new facility is required to meet the community’s current needs and to increase services for more education and health/safety efforts.”

Reames included that there will be multiple opportunities for community discussion and input and that the facility is part of, “T.I.M.E. – Together Investing in Municipal Excellence,” Stillwater’s initiative for collaboration between City and residents to identify needs and funding sources.

City Administration, Engineering, Police and Fire departments will move forward collecting information, scope of needs, estimated costs, and other details for City Council consideration. Resolutions will be presented to Council in July.

Additional information will be added online as it is available:

ABC News


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