Michael Christian Leads 2010 TYPros
By DANIEL C. CAMERON
DANIEL C. CAMERON for GTR Newspapers
The 2010 Tulsa’s Young Professionals chair is Michael Christian. He is the assistant vice president of Alternative Investments, Bank of Oklahoma’s wealth management group.
Christian explains an alternative investment is “anything not traded on a public exchange, so you can’t go to your broker and buy it. These are private partnerships. The ones we mainly deal with are hedge funds, private equity and we do some private real estate.”
Originally from Seattle, Wash., he attended Oklahoma State University on a wrestling scholarship and lettered as a part-time starter in an era of resurging dominance for Cowboy wrestling. The team earned three Big 12 and national championships while he was at .
Christian graduated in 2005 as an economics major with a minor in finance and went right to work with , relocating to Tulsa. He began in commercial lending and soon moved into alternative investments, a part of the business he is attracted to and finds exciting. “I really enjoyed commercial lending, but alternative investments sort of had a special significance and it was kind of a new and developing field,” he says.
Not long after he graduated and relocated to Tulsa, Christian became involved in ros. He did not settle into a work crew right away. Remembering he says, “When I first joined the organization, I bounced around a little bit. I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do.”
He attended a couple of entrepreneurship crew meetings, a crew that no longer exists, as well as Colleges and Universities, Next Generation Leadership and Ambassador crew meetings, eventually settling into the Ambassador and Next Gen. crews.
Christian was the crew leader for the Ambassador Crew when he was nominated to apply for chair. His time with the Ambassador Crew was very productive and moving into the ros chair position seemed like a natural step. Christian shares, “I just felt it was the right time, I was in a good position to step up and thought I had some good ideas that could really take this organization to the next level.”
Becoming chair of ros is an honor. Potential chairs are nominated by their peers on the ros Leadership Team. The LT acts like a board of directors; they meet regularly to deal with ros business such as sharing updates on crew projects and voting on official matters.
The LT consists of ros Executive Director Chris Oden, the acting chair, chair elect, immediate past chair and work crew leaders and co-crew leaders. Former chairs are often in attendance of LT meetings on an advisory scale.
Each year the LT nominates a few members to the selection process for chair elect. Only LT members are eligible to become chair. Nominees then decide if they want to apply for the chair-ship.
This is not an easy decision for most of the nominees. These people are usually very busy with work and personal lives and the chair-ship is a three-year commitment; chair elect, chair and immediate past chair. The year as chair is the most intensive.
A special committee that consists of a past chair, advisory council members, several LT members and a couple members at large run the selection process. The advisory council is a group of Tulsa Metro Chamber board members, who volunteer their time as advisors to the LT. The selection committee scrutinizes application materials, performs interviews and presents one recommendation to the LT for an official vote.
Cassie Reese is the 2010 chair elect behind Christian and Karisha Arnett is the immediate past chair.
Editor’s Note: Tulsa-area leadership has been working hard over the past few years to keep young professional talent in the region. One organization that has been very effective with these efforts is Tulsa Young Professionals, known by its acronym “TYPros.” This is one of an ongoing Newspapers series spotlighting young Tulsa leadership. Greater Tulsa is fortunate to have young talent contributing to its betterment.
The Tulsa Young Professionals, or “TYPros,” is a group of diverse young professionals, whose typical ages range from 21-40, working together to showcase Tulsa as an excellent place to live, work and play. The mission of ros is to retain and attract young talent, while focusing on fostering Tulsa’s next generation of leadership. Membership is free. ros provides its members with opportunities to get in front of and build relationships with local community and business leaders. For more information or to become a member, visit www.typros.org.