Inspired by his father and uncle, both geologists, Headington formed an oil and gas company in Oklahoma City in 1978. Currently based in Dallas, Headington Resources is primarily involved in oil and gas exploration and is active in several of the major basins in the United States. The company also has significant investments in real state, hotel development and private equity.
Headington is the co-founder of the Headington Institute, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide psychological and physical care for caregivers worldwide and to promote the physical hardiness, emotional resilience and spiritual vitality of humanitarian relief and development personnel.
Headington continues to be an active supporter of his alma mater. He has been a major contributor to the Headington Tennis Center and Headington Hall at OU.
Vicki Miles-LaGrange, Oklahoma City
Chief U.S. District Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange was nominated by President Clinton, recommended by Senator David Boren, and confirmed by the U.S. Senate as U.S. Attorney and U.S. District Judge, respectively. A career public servant, she is the first black woman elected to the Oklahoma Senate; first woman U.S. Attorney in Oklahoma; and first black federal judge in the Tenth Circuit.
Miles-LaGrange graduated from Vassar College, cum laude, and Howard University Law School, serving as an editor of The Howard Law Journal, and received a certificate from Ghana University, West Africa.
She served as a federal judicial law clerk; federal and state prosecutor for the U.S. Justice Department, prosecuting Nazi war criminals and sex crimes for the Oklahoma County district attorney; and was a congressional intern for U.S. House Speaker Carl Albert. Chief Justice William Rehnquist appointed her to the U.S. Judicial Conference Committee on International Judicial Relations.
She continues to volunteer her talents and diplomacy in international judicial systems including Rwanda, China, Brazil and Sudan. The Oklahoma and federal bar associations and the Journal Record recognized her for her post genocide work in Rwanda.
She enjoys hosting judicial exchanges for the State Department and Library of Congress' Open World Program.
Russell M. Perry, Oklahoma City
A graduate of Oklahoma City's Douglass High School and Maryland State College, Russell Perry is president of Perry Publishing & Broadcasting, publisher and editor of The Black Chronicle, and the previous co-owner and editor of The Black Dispatch. After purchasing its first radio station in 1993, the company continued to make acquisitions and today owns 20 stations in Oklahoma, South Carolina and Georgia, and purchased a radio and television tower company. The company is the largest privately-owned communications company in the state and the largest black-owned independent broadcasting company in the nation.
Perry served as Oklahoma's Secretary of Commerce during the Keating administration, as well as a member of the Oklahoma Development Finance Authority, Oklahoma Industrial Finance Authority and Oklahoma City Urban Renewal Authority. Perry serves on the State Fair of Oklahoma board and the National Board of Radio & Television, is the majority principal of the First Security Bank & Trust Co. and has served on the Small Business Bank Advisory Council of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and on the Board of Trustees of Oklahoma City University.
His honors include induction into the Oklahoma Afro-American, the Oklahoma Journalism, the American Urban Radio Network Broadcasters and the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters halls of fame.
Reggie N. Whitten, Seminole
Reggie Whitten grew up in Seminole and was the first member of his family to earn a college degree, from OU in 1977, followed by a law degree in 1980. He practices law in Oklahoma City and is a partner in the Whitten Burrage Law Firm. He is a member of the American College of Trial Lawyers, which limits membership to the top 1 percent of state attorneys.
Whitten spends much of his time traveling to schools all over the state recounting the story of his eldest son's death in 2002 due to an addiction to prescription drugs. He is the co-founder of FATE, Fighting Addiction Through Education, and, along with his longtime friend Jim Priest, authored a book about his son's story called “What's Your Fate.”
Whitten is co-founder of Professionals for Africa, a nonprofit organization in which professionals of all occupations lend support to the less fortunate in Africa.
In partnership with the Sam Noble Museum of National History, Whitten co-founded Explorology and Native Explorers, education programs that make science exciting for young people. Thus far, nearly 50,000 Oklahoma youths have been through the program.
CONTRIBUTING: LINDA MILLER, FOR THE OKLAHOMAN