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.

  • Norman veterans home caretakers lose jobs in abuse inquiry

    By Randy Ellis,, Staff Writers | Updated: Mon, Dec 22, 2014

    Three caretakers at the Norman state veterans center have been fired after being accused of abusing an 85-year-old resident with dementia and attempting to cover up what happened. Termination proceedings are pending against a fourth caretaker.

  • Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin shuffles veterans affairs leadership

    BY RANDY ELLIS, Staff Writer | Published: Fri, Dec 19, 2014

    Gov. Mary Fallin announced new appointees and leadership changes Friday that she said are designed to broaden representation of veterans groups and improve veterans services.

  • Oklahoma board authorizes tax cut for most

    BY RANDY ELLIS, Staff Writer | Updated: Thu, Dec 18, 2014

    It’s official: Most Oklahomans will receive a state income tax cut in 2016.

  • Tax cut gets green light for 2016

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Wed, Dec 17, 2014

    Revenue projections are sufficient to trigger a cut in Oklahoma’s top state income tax bracket beginning in 2016, state Secretary of Finance Preston Doerflinger announced Wednesday.

  • Oklahoma Supreme Court upholds Gov. Fallin's executive privilege claim

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Tue, Dec 16, 2014

    Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has the power to withhold the release of certain documents because of executive privilege, but that power is not absolute, the Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday.

  • Oklahoma Supreme Court approves Capitol bond issue

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Mon, Dec 15, 2014

    The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Monday unanimously upheld the constitutionality of legislation calling for the issuance of $120 million in bonds to pay for repairs to the crumbling state Capitol building.

  • Oklahoma Department of Human Services sole source contract raises questions

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Mon, Dec 15, 2014

    The Oklahoma Department of Human Services awarded Tennessee-based Youth Villages a contract in August that is potentially worth millions — choosing not to solicit bids from Oklahoma organizations, which say they could do the same work for a lot less money.

  • No pot sales for Oklahoma tribes, official says

    BY RANDY ELLIS, Staff Writer | Published: Thu, Dec 11, 2014

    Oklahoma City U.S. Attorney Sanford C. Coats said Thursday that the U.S. Justice Department is not opening the door for the sale and cultivation of marijuana on Oklahoma Indian lands.

  • Oklahoma attorney general denies 'secretive alliance'

    BY RANDY ELLIS, Staff Writer | Updated: Mon, Dec 8, 2014

    Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt on Monday took strong exception to a weekend New York Times article that characterized him as participating in a “secretive alliance” with energy companies to push back against the Obama administration’s regulatory agenda.

  • The Oklahoman launches new radio app with customizable features

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Published: Sun, Dec 7, 2014

    Ever wish someone would read you the newspaper on your drive to work? Or at the gym? As of today, subscribers to The Oklahoman can have their news read to them when they are on the go.

  • Oklahoma Supreme Court upholds income tax cut measure

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Published: Tue, Dec 2, 2014

    A state income tax cut bill passed by the Oklahoma Legislature this year was upheld Tuesday by the Oklahoma Supreme Court.

  • Norman Veterans Center cited on standards violations after death of resident

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Mon, Nov 17, 2014

    The October death of a Korean War veteran following an altercation between two residents in the dementia unit of the Norman Veterans Center has resulted in the center being cited by the state Health Department for multiple violations of health care standards.

  • Horse racing in Oklahoma battles stiff competition for gaming dollars

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Tue, Nov 11, 2014

    Legal gaming revenues in Oklahoma have soared more than 600 percent in a decade — going from about $539 million in 2002 to more than $3.9 billion in 2012.

  • List of schools asked to pay cooperative's debts

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Sun, Nov 2, 2014

    Following is a list of former members of the Oklahoma Schools Property/Casualty Cooperative and the amount each is being assessed to pay the financial obligations of the failed self-insurance group:

  • Failed Oklahoma Schools Property/Casualty Cooperative seeks to assess former members

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Updated: Sun, Nov 2, 2014

    The financially failed Oklahoma Schools Property/Casualty Cooperative has sent assessment notices out to its former member schools in an effort to collect more than $700,000 to pay existing and future claims. School attorneys have warned their clients to use caution while they seek to determine whether the assessments are legal.

  • The Oklahoman warns of unauthorized subscription offers

    Published: Sun, Nov 2, 2014

    The Oklahoman would like to warn its home delivery customers about deceptive and unauthorized subscription offers and renewal notices being mailed to Oklahoma residents by an out-of-state company.

  • Duncan officials refuse to release some documents about murder defendant Alan Hruby

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writers | Updated: Fri, Oct 24, 2014

    A Duncan assistant city attorney released some documents but withheld others Friday concerning prior police contacts with 19-year-old Alan J. Hruby, who is charged with three counts of first-degree murder in the Oct. 9 shooting deaths of his parents and younger sister.

  • Oklahoma candidates spar over Fallin-approved raises

    BY RANDY ELLIS - Staff Writer | Updated: Thu, Oct 23, 2014

    Pay hikes for most agency directors are set by boards and commissions, but Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin personally has given substantial raises to many state agency directors.

  • Pushmataha County sheriff, commissioner under investigation

    BY RANDY ELLIS, Staff Writer | Updated: Wed, Oct 22, 2014

    Pushmataha County Commissioner Jerry Duncan and his brother, Sheriff Terry Duncan, are under investigation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation for possible purchasing irregularities uncovered by a state audit.

  • Oklahoma county government self-insurer can't be sued for bad faith

    By Randy Ellis, Staff Writer | Published: Wed, Oct 22, 2014

    A self-insurance group for Oklahoma county governments can’t be sued for bad faith because it is entitled to sovereign immunity, the Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. Delaware County had sued the insurer trying to get it to pay for a $13.5 million settlement with 15 female former county jail inmates who said the were sexually abused.