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Seven notables inducted into Oklahoma Hall of Fame

New members are retired Gen. Tommy Franks, Harold Hamm, Marques Haynes, Cathy Keating, Steve Malcolm, Roger Miller and Elizabeth Warren.
BY KEN RAYMOND kraymond@opubco.com Published: November 18, 2011

Cathy Keating, Tulsa

“I am humbled and honored,” Keating said of her inclusion in the Oklahoma Hall of Fame. “It really is, not the pinnacle of one's life, but certainly the highest honor in one's life. I'm elated. I'm thrilled.”

Keating, 61, is a fourth-generation Oklahoman, an author and the state's first lady from 1995 to 2003.

After the Oklahoma City bombing, Keating implemented an international prayer service. She wrote “In Their Name: The Oklahoma City Bombing.” The book made The New York Times best-seller list, and proceeds went to Project Recovery OKC.

She also wrote “Our Governor's Mansion” and “Ooh La La: Cuisine Presented in a Stately Manner.” The books benefited the Friends of the Oklahoma Governor's Mansion, a nonprofit she founded to restore and preserve the mansion.

She has been a board member or chairman of a variety of entities, including the Oklahoma City National Memorial, the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, the Oklahoma City Salvation Army capital campaign, the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Express Services Inc. and the American Red Cross capital campaign in Washington, D.C.

She and her husband, former Gov. Frank Keating, split their time between Oklahoma and Washington. They have three children and seven grandchildren.

She was introduced Thursday by Sam Donaldson, the longtime correspondent/anchor for ABC News. Donaldson is the Keatings' neighbor in Washington.

“We share kind of the same Western values,” she said recently. “Sam grew up in New Mexico. He still has a ranch in New Mexico. His love of the West and his roots are tied to the West, just like mine and Frank's.”

Keating said she never imagined she'd be inducted into the Hall.

“The Hall of Fame is not about one person,” she said. “It's really about the state of Oklahoma and the people who made our state great.”

Steve Malcolm, Tulsa

Malcolm, 63, is the fourth chief executive officer of Tulsa-based Williams Co. to make it into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame.

“I'm honored to be recognized,” he said in a phone interview. “It's a very impressive group. All of these people, many of whom I've idolized over the years, seem be part of this class, so it's a real honor.”

Malcolm, who retired in 2010, became the company's CEO in 2002, inheriting a financial crisis caused by the fall of the energy trading and telecommunications industries. He steered Williams into a period of growth and expansion.

“I was truly blessed to be able to work at Williams,” he said. “It's a great place to work. The values there make it a place where people are glad to work. ... Clearly, any accomplishments that I've been able to achieve are tied to my time at Williams and the support I had from Williams employees.”

Malcolm has a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla. He was a board member or chairman of many organizations, including the Tulsa Future Oversight Committee, the Tulsa Stadium Trust, the YMCA of Greater Tulsa, YMCA of the U.S.A., St. John Medical Center, the University of Tulsa trustees and the Tulsa Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, among others.

He also was a member or executive of several industry groups, including the American Exploration & Production Council, the American Natural Gas Alliance, the American Petroleum Institute, the Business Roundtable, the National Association of Corporate Directors and the National Petroleum Council.

He was introduced Thursday by Alison Anthony, director of Diversity and Community Relations at Williams and president of The Williams Foundation.

Roger Miller, Erick

Miller, who died of lung cancer at age 56 in 1992, was a prolific songwriter, singer and actor.

His widow said he would've been shocked to be included in the Oklahoma Hall of Fame.

“I like to say that Roger was a dreamer, but he never would have expected anything like this,” Mary Miller said in a phone interview from her Tennessee home. “He loved Oklahoma. Most of his songs are about people there. As much as he hated working in the oil fields and had a rough time as a boy in the cotton fields ... he would truly be honored by this.”

Her husband, she said, was in the vanguard of his generation of country singers. He'd begun writing songs during three-mile walks to school in Erick, and his dreams of success were fueled by his connection with Sheb Wooley, an entertainer who appeared in films and sang the novelty song, “Purple People Eater.”

After a stint in the Army, Roger Miller went to Nashville, Tenn., where he played fiddle in Minnie Pearl's band and collaborated with George Jones.

He married and moved to Amarillo, Texas, where Ray Price asked him to join the Cherokee Cowboys. He returned to Nashville, signed a songwriting contract and launched a solo career that included hits such as “You Don't Want My Love,” “Engine Engine #9” and “The Last Word in Lonesome Is Me.”

He partnered with Willie Nelson on “Old Friends,” his last top 20 hit. He won a Tony award for his work on “Big River,” a Broadway adaptation of “Huckleberry Finn.”

“He drew so much of what he wrote from the people he knew in Oklahoma,” Mary Miller said. “He never really expected people to like him. ... He was just a prolific writer. That's what he did. He never expected to get anything from it.”

Elizabeth Warren, Oklahoma City

Warren, 61, could not be reached before the ceremony, but Thursday night she acknowledged her inclusion into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame for her family, saying “family means everything to me.” Upon accepting her award, she said, “For me, Oklahoma is really a place in the heart.”

The Northwest Classen High School debate champion — and former assistant to President Barack Obama — is running for a U.S. Senate seat as a Democrat in Massachusetts.

In 2008, Warren was appointed to chair the Congressional Oversight Panel overseeing the bank bailouts. She was a special adviser to the secretary of the treasury on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and is the Leo Gottlieb professor of law at Harvard University.

She was chief adviser to the National Bankruptcy Review Commission and was appointed by Chief Justice William Rehnquist as the first academic member of the Federal Judicial Education Committee. She has been a member of the Commission on Economic Inclusion and vice president of the American Law Institute. She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Warren has written nine books and more than 100 scholarly articles about credit and economic stress. Her most recent two books, “The Two-Income Trap” and “All Your Worth,” were national best-sellers.

She has testified several times before House and Senate committees on financial issues. Time magazine has twice named her one of its 100 most influential people in the world. The Boston Globe named her Bostonian of the Year, and the National Law Journal called her one of the most influential lawyers of the decade.

She was introduced Thursday by T. Boone Pickens, a Holdenville native and Dallas-based energy magnate.

Contributing:

Helen Ford Wallace


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