Southeastern News

Michael Burrage to be inducted into Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2016

Michael Burrage

Michael Burrage

DURANT, Okla. – Michael Burrage and six other prominent individuals will be inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2016. The 89th annual banquet and induction ceremony will be held November 17 at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City.

Joining Burrage as inductees this year are Troy Aikman, Rita Bly Aragon, Dan Dillingham, Rebecca Dixon, Kelli O’Hara and Russell Westbrook.

Being inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame is the highest honor an Oklahoman can receive from the state. Since the Oklahoma Hall of Fame’s inception in 1927, 677 accomplished individuals have received this commendation.

Burrage, a Distinguished Alumnus of Southeastern Oklahoma State University, is the father of Southeastern president Sean Burrage.

Michael Burrage, a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, was born in Durant, Oklahoma.  He received a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Southeastern in 1971, and earned a juris doctor degree with honors from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1974.

Burrage was in private practice in Antlers from 1974 to 1994. He was named Outstanding Young Lawyer in Oklahoma in 1977, and served as president of the Oklahoma Bar Association in 1990.

In 1994, President Bill Clinton nominated Burrage to be a United States District Judge and he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 8, 1994.  He served as a federal judge for all three of the U.S. District Courts in Oklahoma and was the first Native American Federal Judge.  He also sat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit by designation.

Burrage was inducted into the American College of Trial Lawyers in 1993 and served as State Chairman in 2008 – 2009.

In 1996, he became the chief judge at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, where he served until 2001. He is now senior managing partner at Whitten Burrage law firm in Oklahoma City.

Burrage was inducted into the University of Oklahoma College of Law, Order of the Owl Hall of Fame on Oct. 30, 2013.

He is married to Aletha and has two sons, Sean and David.

Presidential Golf Classic scheduled for June 10 at Chickasaw Pointe

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University’s annual Presidential Golf Classic is scheduled for Friday, June 10, at Chickasaw Pointe Golf Club on Lake Texoma.

The Presidential Golf Classic is an annual fundraising event to support the Southeastern Foundation and the University.

Entry fee is $150 per player and includes a registration gift, greens fee, cart, food and drinks.

Golfers may enter as a team or individually. Prizes will be awarded to first-, second-and third-place teams. Winning team names will be added to the President’s Cup trophy.

There will be contests for Closest-to-the-Pin and Longest Drive.

Registration and the practice range will be open at 7:30 a.m. with a continental breakfast at 8 a.m. and the shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. A post-tournament buffet will be served at approximately 2-3 p.m.

Golfers may obtain registration information online at Registration forms and payment may be mailed to Presidential Golf Classic, Southeastern Foundation, 1405 N. 4th Avenue, PMB 4187, Durant, Okla., 74701-0609.

Several levels of sponsorship are available, from $100 to $3,500 for a Platinum sponsorship, which includes two teams of six players and Platinum amenities.

Gold sponsorship ($2,500), Silver ($2,000) and Bronze ($1,500) include one team of six players and accompanying amenities.

Team sponsorship ($1,000) includes one team of six players. Tournament sponsor ($500) includes one regular registration. The Hole sponsorship ($100) includes signage at a hole.

To discuss sponsorship opportunities, contact Mark Webb at 580-745-2361 or visit

Southeastern begins four-day work week May 30

DURANT, Okla. – As has been the case in recent years, Southeastern Oklahoma State University will be on a four-day work week during the summer, beginning Monday, May 30 (Memorial Day holiday), and concluding on Friday, July 29.

Offices will be open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Thursday. Offices will be closed on Friday.

All full-time staff members are required to work 40 hours per week or use the necessary amount of leave to meet the 40-hour per week requirement.

Remote area medical clinic serves 780 people

Dental exams were among the services provided Saturday and Sunday.

Dental exams were among the services provided Saturday and Sunday.

DURANT, Okla. – Some 780 people registered to receive dental cleanings, dental fillings, dental extractions, eye exams, eyeglass prescriptions, eyeglass production, women’s health exams and medical exams last weekend at a free medical clinic held at Southeastern Oklahoma State University.

The initiative was part of the Remote Area Medical® (RAM) Oklahoma program, in conjunction with the Rural Health Network (RHN) of Oklahoma. The two organizations have a common goal of increasing access to quality health care for underserved Oklahomans.

Stacie Pace, RHN’s executive director, worked collaboratively with the RAM organization to being the clinic to this area.

Two facilities – the University’s Bloomer Sullivan Arena and Bloomer Sullivan Gymnasium — were utilized for the medical clinic on Saturday and Sunday.. A number of the volunteers were also provided lodging in Shearer Residence Hall.

Joining the out-of-town volunteers were Southeastern students, faculty, staff, and administrators.

“This was a first-class operation that Southeastern was proud to be involved with,’’ said University president Sean Burrage.  “It’s incredible to see the dedication of the volunteers who come from across the country to make this happen.  We are already talking about having a similar event here in a couple of years.’’

RAM director Ron Brewer and Southeastern president Sean Burrage visit at the event.

RAM director Ron Brewer and Southeastern president Sean Burrage visit at the event.

Remote Area Medical® (RAM) to Hold Free Medical Clinic at Southeastern Oklahoma State University May 14-15, 2016

DURANT, Okla. – More than 1,000 people are expected to receive dental cleanings, dental fillings, dental extractions, eye exams, eyeglass prescriptions, eyeglass production, women’s health exams and medical exams. All services are delivered on a first-come, first-served basis. The clinic will be open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 14, and from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, May 15 at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. Entry numbers will be distributed at 3 a.m., three hours before the clinic begins. Patients can begin lining up for entry numbers at midnight, although many patients will form a line before midnight to ensure they receive a number.

The initiative is a part of the Remote Area Medical® (RAM) Oklahoma program, in conjunction with the Rural Health Network (RHN) of Oklahoma. The two organizations have a common goal of increasing access to quality health care for many underserved Oklahomans. Stacie Pace, RHN’s executive director worked collaboratively with the RAM organization to bring this program back to Oklahoma with help from local providers.

Two facilities – the University’s Bloomer Sullivan Arena and Bloomer Sullivan Gymnasium located on 1st Avenue – will serve as sites for the medical clinic. In 2014, a similar clinic was held in Oklahoma City that provided services to 1,000 individuals.

Medical professionalsvolunteers, public donors, partners, and sponsors are combining forces for the Durant clinic. All providers are certified medical professionals, including, but not limited to, dentists, dental hygienists, optometrists, opticians, nurse practitioners, physicians and physician assistants. Medical professionals are encouraged to join the event at or sign up at the volunteer entrance door before 6 a.m. on May 14-15.

RAM, founded in 1985 by British cowboy Stan Brock, RAM initially served third world countries. By 1995, RAM held 60 percent of its operations in the United States. Today, 90 percent of RAM’s operations are held in the U.S.

RHN was established in 2008 with help from a grant written by Little Dixie Community Action Agency, headquartered in Hugo, Oklahoma.

For more information, call 405-259-4824 or visit

Heather Burrage recognized as “Achiever Under 40’’ at OKC awards luncheon

hburrage[1]DURANT, Okla. – Local attorney and Southeastern Oklahoma State University graduate Heather Burrage was honored Thursday at The Journal Record’s “Achievers Under 40’’ awards luncheon. The event, which recognized the professional and community achievements of 39 of Oklahoma’s young leaders, was held at the Skirvin Hilton in Oklahoma City.

Keynote speaker for the 13th annual event was Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb.

“Please don’t leave – ever,” Lt. Gov. Lamb told the group.  “There is a renaissance that is pending in Oklahoma,” said Lamb, who acknowledged there are challenges in the state, just as others experience. “The pending renaissance will only occur when bright, successful men and women are participating in that renaissance. For us to realize that and have a state our citizens deserve, you must remain.”

Heather Hillburn Burrage graduated from Southeastern Oklahoma State University in 1999 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Social Studies Education and went on to graduate, with honors, from the University of Oklahoma College of Law with a Juris Doctorate, in 2002.

She began her practice of law with the Burrage Law Firm in Durant in 2002 with her father-in-law, Michael Burrage, and her husband, David Burrage.

She is a member of the Bryan County Bar Association and the Oklahoma Bar Association.  Burrage was named as a top 100 Super Lawyer in the State of Oklahoma in 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014. She is a member of the Durant Education and Service Sorority and PEO Chapter GV and serves on the Board of Directors for the Southeastern Alumni Association, the Miss Southeast Oklahoma Scholarship Pageant, the Crisis Control Center and Imagine Durant.

Burrage is the former Chair of the Oklahoma Judicial Nominating Commission and is also a Fellow in the Litigation Counsel of America. She specializes in general litigation and trial practice with an emphasis on banking and commercial litigation.

She and her husband David have two children, Jack and Blair.

Love Travel Stops was the presenting sponsor of Thursday’s event.

Jenny Love Meyer, with Love’s, stressed the importance of core values to the group.

“Integrity, innovation, perseverance, strong work ethic, and most importantly a focus on the customer,” Meyer said. “These core values are a foundation for leadership and can be found and nurtured at any level. … You are setting an excellent example in leadership. Look around you and find these values shining in others and encourage them.”

Other sponsors included AT&T, BKD CPAs, the Chickasaw Nation and the Cherokee Nation.

“The Achievers class of 2016 is a very special group, 39 chosen from 117 completed nominations. Their stories detail not only their business talent and acumen, but their concern for and commitment to their families, communities and the world,” said Joni Brooks, president and publisher of The Journal Record. “They are shining examples for younger generations as well as demonstrated results of the mentoring they’ve received along the way. Oklahoma can be proud to have leaders like these, and The Journal Record and our sponsors are excited to present this talented group of award winners to the state.”



Southeastern recognizes honor graduates

Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb was the commencement speaker Saturday.

Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb was the commencement speaker Saturday.

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University recognized 42 honor graduates Saturday during commencement exercises at Bloomer Sullivan Arena.

Two ceremonies were held, with Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb serving as commencement speaker. Also offering remarks were Southeastern president Sean Burrage, Regent Ann Holloway of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, Regent Terry Matlock of the Regional University System of Oklahoma, and Kerrey Matlock and Heather Burrage from the Southeastern Alumni Association.

Following is the list of honor grads, listed by permanent hometown (Oklahoma, unless otherwise noted)

Cum Laude (with honors)

Southeastern president Sean Burrage congratulates a graduate.

Southeastern president Sean Burrage congratulates a graduate.

Brianna Akins, Bokchito; Kaylie Dene Baxter, Durant; Railey Beth Burrage, Antlers; Weston Don DePriest, Rush Springs; Sarrysa Anne Eaves, Durant; Mandy Lynn Gorham, Wilburton; Geneva Hall, Sherman, Texas; Karlee Dalton Hall, Ravenna, Texas; Roni Lee Nichole Hamilton, Atoka; Jessica Micheal Hayes, Whitewright, Texas; Angela M. Heath, Ardmore; Robin S. Hevka, Dickson.

Also, Maverick Levi McClendon, Marietta; Lauren Miller McMurl, Broken Bow; LaiKen Noel McMurl, Broken Bow; Madison Paige Ogletree, Lone Grove; George Allen Pate, Fort Towson; Regina Jonell Phillips, Bokchito; Stephenie Carlene Shields, Garland, Texas; Ezra J. Tacosa, Denison, Texas; Tascee Wahoske, Wapanucka; Nathan D. Wright, Durant.

Magna Cum Laude (with high honors)

Cassaundra Nichole Braaten, Bullard, Texas; Birch F. Bryant, Hugo; Ashley Dawn Carranza, Springer; Jessica Graham, Sherman, Texas; Lisa Diane Hill, Denison, Texas; Hayden Trent Hokit, Stuart; Parker Tate Liddell, Thackerville; Christopher David Lovett, Moore; Amber Renee McLain, Ardmore; Timothy Allen Misner, Enid; Cullen Whisenhunt, Caddo; Jose Benito Bocanegra Yanez, Fletcher.

Summa Cum Laude (with highest honors)

Madison Barr, Owasso; Jessie Elizabeth Batson, Haworth; Cacy Allan Cribbs, Wapanucka; Michaela Miranda Metts, Durant; Wendy Michelle Miller, Sherman, Texas; Christian Tollett, Calvin; Josee Gail Vaughn, Broken Bow; Don Wayne Wheeler II, Cloudy.

Bloomer Sullivan Arena was packed Saturday during the two commencement ceremonies.

Bloomer Sullivan Arena was packed Saturday during the two commencement ceremonies.

The graduates were all smiles Saturday.

The graduates were all smiles Saturday.

Area high school students honored at Tri-County banquet

Former Southeastern All-America quarterback Drew Beard was the keynote speaker at the Tri-County event.

Former Southeastern All-America quarterback Drew Beard was the keynote speaker at the Tri-County event.

DURANT, Okla. – Some 90 students from 17 schools were honored Tuesday night at the Tri-County Honors Program, held in the Visual and Performing Arts Center at Southeastern Oklahoma State University.

First United Bank serves as corporate sponsor of the annual event, while Southeastern is the education sponsor.

Tuesday’s keynote speaker was former Southeastern All-America quarterback Drew Beard, who is South Central area director of the Oklahoma Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Beard was inducted into the Southeastern Athletics Hall of Fame in 2014.

Greg Massey, CEO of First United, served as emcee, with Southeastern president Sean Burrage offering welcoming remarks.

Awards were presented by Massey, Burrage, Beard, the First United Bank presidents, and Kyle Stafford, vice president of university advancement.

Following is the list of students honored, listed by school:

Achille High School

Kyle Dowd, DarianClark, Riggin Dellis, Anthony Shackleford, Kiersten Brown

Bennington High School

Mason Emert, Dillon Clark, Michael Rochelle, Taylor Dancer

Boswell High School

Jayce Massengale,McKenna Pierce, Jay Isaacs, Wyatt Sullivan, Camrie Rhone

Caddo High School

Hadley Clower, Rubi Gonzales, Patrick Joines, Jayci Braudrick

Calera High School

Madlynn Robinson,Bryce Thralls, Raylee Rogers, Hailey Bishop

Colbert High School

Joseph Schnitker,Logan Corbett, Rylee Mattingly, Haylie McGowan

Durant High School

Carley Schuessler, Logan Hibbs, Conner Austin, Alex Benito, Eli Breon, Reagan Brooks, Matthew Corley, Adam Davis, Lexi Diessner, Kelsey Glenn, Logan Hime, Nathan Hodson,Erika Hogue, Joshua Jackson, Jacob Lusk, Emily Marcum, Jacob Pardue, AlisonRoberts, Hannah Robinson, Hayley Sicking, Layton Tubbs, Addison Van Zandbergen, Sydney Youngblood

Fort Towson High School

Amy Burkhalter, Micaella Church, Lanie Hedrick, Beau Scaff

Hugo High School

Ronald Briggs, Breanna Carswell, Kaylee Clinton, Devin Holt, Haley White, Connor Wilson, Logan McGhee, Michal Ellis

Hugo Kiamichi Technology Center

Wendell “Colby” Watts, Richard Randell, Sheantuny Bray, Michell Adams

Durant Kiamichi Technology Center

Rubi Gonzales,  Hailey Bishop, Matthew Hernandez, Debra Jean Ann Graham

Kingston High School

Regan Stephenson,Alexis Spence

Madill High School

Austin  Williams, Dakota Looney, Raegin Eddings

Rock Creek High School

Josie Harbin, Macy Eiler, Damian Trahan, Jaclynn Carter

Silo High School

Meagan Renfro, Forrest Ludrick, Christian Giles, Skylar Logan

Soper High School

Taylor Holder, Lacee Allen, Jase Holder, Ferron Kelso

Victory Life Academy

Whittney Hall, Rylanne Martin, Dalton Farrell, Kerri Wallace

Lieutenant Governor Todd Lamb to address spring graduates on May 7

LtGov LambDURANT, Okla. – Oklahoma Lieutenant Governor Todd Lamb will be the speaker at Southeastern Oklahoma State University’s Spring Commencement, scheduled for Saturday, May 7, in Bloomer Sullivan Arena.

“We are honored to have Lt. Gov. Lamb as our commencement speaker,’’ said Southeastern president Sean Burrage. “His background in public service is impressive and we look forward to hearing his comments on such an important day in thelives of our students and their families. On a personal note, Lt. Gov. Lamb and I developed a strong friendship during our time in the Senate together, and I have the utmost respect for him.’’

Two commencement ceremonies will be held as follows:

10:00 – 11:00 a.m. 

  • School of Education & Behavioral Sciences
  • John Massey School of Business
  • Master of Business Administration
  • Master of Science (Aerospace Administration and Logistics)
  • Master of Arts (Clinical Mental Health Counseling)
  • Master of Education
  • Master of Arts (Teaching)
  • Master of Science (Sports Studies and Athletic Administration)
  • Master of Science (Native American Leadership)

2:00 – 3:00 p.m.     

  • School of Arts and Sciences
  • Master of Technology
  • Master of Science (Safety)
  • Master of Music Education

Oklahomans  elected Todd Lamb as Lt. Governor on November 2, 2010, and he won re-election in 2014, winning all of the state’s 77 counties.

An Enid native, Lamb played football at Louisiana Tech University, then returned to Oklahoma to earn his bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University and his law degree from Oklahoma City University School of Law.

At the beginning of his career, Lamb worked for then-gubernatorial candidate Frank Keating and later served in the Keating administration until 1998, when he became a Special Agent with the United States Secret Service.

During his U.S. Secret Service tenure, Lamb investigated and made numerous arrests in the areas of counterfeiting, bank fraud, threats against the President, andidentity theft. His duties included domestic and international protection assignments during the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations.

In early 2001, he was appointed to the national Joint Terrorism Task Force andafter the terrorists’ attacks, he was assigned to portions of the 9-11 investigation.

In 2004, Lamb was elected to serve in the Oklahoma State Senate.  He was re-elected in 2008; in 2009, he  became the first Republican Majority Floor Leader in state history. Lamb has worked in the private sector as a landman in Oklahoma’s energy industry, and was General Counsel for an energy and wireless company in Edmond, Oklahoma.

To further demonstrate his leadership, Lamb was elected chairman of the National Lt. Governors Association and the Republican Lt. Governors Association. For five years, Lamb has been Vice Chair of the Aerospace States Association.

Southeastern Dept. of Music presents “Carmina Burana’’ on May 1

DURANT, Okla. –The large ensembles of the Southeastern Oklahoma State Music Department are collaborating for a spectacular end-of-the-year concert, Carl Orff’s “Carmina Burana.’’

The concert is scheduled for May 1 at 2:30 p.m. in Montgomery Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public. This concert is supported by a grant from the Scholastic and Cultural Lectureship Fee Committee.

This 20th-century masterpiece is familiar to many from commercial and movie soundtracks.  The music is sometimes epic, sometimes sweet, and always compelling. The text is a collection of medieval poems discovered in a German monastery; the anonymous monks who wrote the texts dealt with a wide range of topics, including fate, love, springtime, and even drinking.

The work features the Southeastern Symphonic Choir and Southeastern Symphonic Winds, as well as the Children’s Chorus of the Southeastern Hub for Arts Education (SHARE).

The three vocal soloists are Southeastern alumni: soprano Megan Crews ’07, tenor Darius Thomas ’15, and baritone Aaron Williams ’14. The Southeastern music students are joined by community members, Southeastern graduate students, and most of the music faculty.

The conductors are Dr. Erin Colleen Cooper, director of bands, and Dr. Joshua Hawkins Nannestad, assistant professor of choral music education.