Gordon Bonnyman Jr., executive director of the Tennessee Justice Center, described Lake as a “great guy” and “very able administrator” during a May interview with The Oklahoman.
Bonnyman said Lake distinguished himself when Tennessee experienced massive flooding two years ago.
“He just moved heaven and earth to get emergency food stamp … benefits out to people who had no previous experience with that whole set of benefits. He got out there in a way that respected their dignity and made it very accessible in circumstances in which much of the infrastructure was in shreds.”
Commissioners have been searching for a successor to Howard Hendrick, who resigned as Oklahoma's DHS director this year after spending 13 years as head of Oklahoma's largest state agency.