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Do You, Cleta, Agree to Change Your Last Name? I Do, If Dale Changes Party

Jim Young Published: March 9, 1984

"I could never understand my colleagues who come to the House and stay here for 20 years."

Deatherage said she does not think her marriage will change her political life. In fact, she said Mitchell is a people-oriented individual who has added a "new dimension" to her political knowledge.

The Norman lawmaker served as House Appropriations and Budget chairman during the Dan Draper era of leadership. She was the only woman serving as a legislative appropriations chairman in the nation during her tenure.

She left this position with the change in leadership to Jim Barker and has been serving as chairman of a special committee on economic development.

Deatherage seems to enjoy her new role outside the glare of legislative leadership.

"I feel a great sense of freedom and relief. It is a mistake by people making public policy to become so consumed by what goes on in this building.

"You can't ever live a normal life and then you have to come up here and make good decisions."

Deatherage said she has made no public choice among the candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination. She said she is staying out of the race until the general election because she thinks a national committeewoman should be in a position to serve the party as a whole.

Mitchell is well-known in Oklahoma financial circles, where he has had a meteoric rise. He was president of First National Bank of Oklahoma City at the age of 35.

Mitchell attended the University of Oklahoma, where he was a member of the varsity baseball team. A few years ago he contributed money to build a new baseball park at OU, named after L. Dale Mitchell, his father, who was a veteran major league baseball player for the Cleveland Indians and Brooklyn Dodgers. BIOG: NAME:

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