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TU Names Former Tulsa Mayor Taylor As Interim Business Dean


Former Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor has been named interim dean of the University of Tulsa’s business school.

Taylor’s appointment is effective July 1, and TU will carry on with a national search for a permanent dean of the Collins College of Business.

"Kathy has a consistent record of transformational change, and she has proven leadership in both the public and private sectors,” TU President-elect Brad Carson said in a statement. "Throughout her career in business, law and public service, she has been a tireless advocate for education and entrepreneurship as well as diversity, equity and inclusion, all of which position her well to serve as our interim dean. I am certain our students will be the greatest beneficiaries of Kathy’s wealth of knowledge and extensive connections in business and industry."

Taylor holds a law degree from OU. She was the second woman elected mayor of Tulsa in April 2006 and oversaw completion of Vision 2025 sales tax projects like the BOK Center. Taylor also pushed for a street bond issue and construction of ONEOK Field.

"With my unwavering commitment to Tulsa, the people and the business community, I am truly honored to lead the Collins College of Business," Taylor said in a statement. "During this period of transition, I am committed to partnering with the faculty, staff and students as we continue to grow in new ways."

Before running for mayor, Taylor was Oklahoma Secretary of Commerce and Tourism under Gov. Brad Henry. She currently serves on boards for business accelerators 36 Degrees North and StitchCrew, and for the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation, which she and her husband Bill Lobeck started.

Taylor was a resident fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School Institute of Politics and holds honorary doctoral degrees from TU and Old Dominion University.

Senior Associate Dean Ralph Jackson has been serving as interim dean of TU's business school since the departure of former dean Linda Nichols, who left Tulsa in 2020 to serve as dean of the College of Business Administration at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. 

Note: KWGS is licensed to the University of Tulsa.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.
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