Randy Ellis
Local News Investigative Reporter

For the past 30 years, staff writer Randy Ellis has exposed public corruption and government mismanagement in news articles. Ellis has investigated problems in Oklahoma's higher education institutions and wrote stories that ultimately led to two college presidents being sentenced to prison and a former chancellor being forced to resign. He has written about abuses of Oklahoma's workers' compensation system, corruption in the state's municipal bond industry, bid-rigging by county officials, self-dealing by state housing officials, misconduct involving state legislators and a variety of other topics. Ellis has won more than 80 state, regional and national awards for journalistic excellence. Prior to joining The Oklahoman in 1982, Ellis worked at Arkansas newspapers. He is a 1977 graduate of Kansas State University.


  • Strategic Reserve: Just how much oil is that?

    Matt Patterson, Randy Ellis, Todd Pendleton | Updated: Thu, Jul 30, 2015

    The U.S. Senate on Thursday passed a six-year highway bill for building roads and bridges that would be paid for, in part, by selling oil from nation's strategic reserve. So just how big is that reserve?

  • Program offers parents chance to work out overdue child support obligations

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    Parents will be given an opportunity to work out payment schedules and have the warrants withdrawn under an Amnesty in August program announced Tuesday by the Child Support Services division of the Oklahoma Department of Human Services.

  • Oklahoma Transportation Department sets goals for next 25 years

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    The emphasis on improving bridges will continue, but by the end of this decade the department expects to have made enough progress that it can begin shifting resources to deal more with pavement issues, said John Bowman, director of capital programs for the Oklahoma Department of Transportation.

  • Oklahoma attorney general's office seeks injunction on EPA water rule

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt filed a request for an injunction delaying the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Water Rule on Friday.

  • OK governor's order gives attorney general new power

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Jul 22, 2015

    Gov. Mary Fallin has issued an executive order giving the Oklahoma attorney general’s office expanded authority over proposed actions of numerous state regulatory boards. Board members who reject the attorney general's advice will be subject to removal for misconduct.

  • Oklahoma judge refuses DHS request to dismiss lawsuit over Pauls Valley institution

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Thu, Jul 16, 2015

    Closure of a state-run facility for developmentally disabled adults in Oklahoma is at the heart of a lawsuit by a parent-guardian group against the Oklahoma DHS

  • From thrilled to chilled, residents react to Obama's visit

    RANDY ELLIS | Updated: Thu, Jul 16, 2015

    DURANT - President Barack Obama's visit to Durant Wednesday sparked emotional reactions out in the community. Maria Gallegos, a 20-year-old cocktail server at a local Indian casino, said she'd have gone to see him speak in a heartbeat if she had been able to wrangle an invitation. "I would go anytime, anywhere, as long as I got to meet him," Gallegos said. "I think it's an honor that he's here in Durant." Beverly Nelson, Wanda Johnson and Deborah Battiest-Tomasi said their only regret was that they were unable to get invitations to hear the president speak. Johnson said people are still talking about when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt visited Amarillo during the Dust Bowl and she thinks Obama's

  • In Durant, Obama touts Web access for poor

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Jul 15, 2015

    Oklahoma's Choctaw Nation will be among the first to participate in a federal program to expand to high-speed Internet access.

  • Choctaw Nation is abuzz with visit from Obama

    By Randy Ellis Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com  | Updated: Wed, Jul 15, 2015

    President Barack Obama is scheduled to speak Wednesday in Durant.

  • Oklahoma Department of Human Services closes Southern Oklahoma Resource Center in Pauls Valley

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Mon, Jul 13, 2015

    The Oklahoma Department of Human Services moved the last client out of Pauls Valley's Southern Oklahoma Resource Center and declared the facility closed Friday. The facility was opened in 1907.

  • Chickasaws, Choctaws agree to settle lawsuit against U.S. agencies

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Fri, Jul 10, 2015

    The tribes contended government officials failed to properly protect tribal interests when they sold off more than 1.3 million acres of tribal timber lands from 1908 to 1940.

  • Oklahoma attorney general sues EPA over added water authority

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Thu, Jul 9, 2015

    Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Wednesday in an effort to halt implementation of an agency rule that would expand the EPA's authority to regulate the nation's waters.

  • Lawsuit challenges Indian Child Welfare Act

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Jul 8, 2015

    A class-action lawsuit filed Monday in Phoenix claims the federal Indian Child Welfare Act fails to provide equal protection for American Indian children and should be declared unconstitutional.

  • State panels are vulnerable to antitrust lawsuits, AG says

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Tue, Jul 7, 2015

    "The Office of the Attorney General is concerned that many state boards and commissions present the risk or appearance of protecting private monetary interests rather than advancing sound public policy because they are controlled by active market participants, and this risk leaves the boards and commissions open to antitrust liability," Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt said in a July 6 letter to Gov. Mary Fallin.

  • Blasts may cause delay near I-35 rockslide in Oklahoma's Arbuckle Mountains

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Tue, Jul 7, 2015

    Oklahoma state Transportation Executive Director Mike Patterson said Monday at a state Transportation Commission meeting that blasting is planned along Interstate 35 to mitigate rockslides in the Arbuckle Mountains between Ardmore and Davis, Oklahoma.

  • Transportation commissioners vote for cable barrier on I-35 where crash killed 4 softball players

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Tue, Jul 7, 2015

    Oklahoma transportation commissioners approved a contract to install a 7-mile-long cable barrier to separate northbound and southbound lanes of Interstate 35 along a stretch of highway where four softball players died in September 2014 in a crossover accident.

  • Oklahoma man faces charges in cattle thefts

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Published: Fri, Jul 3, 2015

    Kiley Wayne Johnson has been charged in the thefts of 17 calves and 13 cows from five owners in Oklahoma's Okmulgee County. Johnson is from Henryetta.

  • Oklahoma Supreme Court says Ten Commandments monument must go from Capitol grounds

    BY RANDY ELLIS STAFF WRITER  | Updated: Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt said he believes the court "got it wrong" and filed a petition for rehearing — a move that will at least delay removal of the monument.

  • Ten Commandments Ruling: Attorney General Scott Pruitt says court 'got it wrong'

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer   | Updated: Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    An Oklahoma Supreme Court ruling that the Ten Commandments monument must be removed from the state Capitol grounds touched off a storm of protests Tuesday with several lawmakers calling for the impeachment of the seven justices who supported the decision. Attorney General Scott Pruitt said he believes the court "got it wrong" and he plans to ask for a rehearing. At the very least, that will delay removal of the monument. Some lawmakers were furious. “Our state Supreme Court is playing politics by issuing rulings contrary to the Constitution, and contrary to the will of the clear majority of Oklahoma voters,” said state Rep.

  • Norman executive claims defamation

    BY RANDY ELLIS Staff Writer rellis@oklahoman.com | Updated: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    Roy Orr, former chief executive officer of a Norman medical billing company that financially collapsed amid allegations of billing irregularities, claims a Norman doctor and others invaded his privacy. He is suing them and claiming defamation.





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