Ten People to Watch in 2017


Greater Tulsa Reporter featured G.T. Bynum as a Person to Watch in 2016 due to his efforts with Vision Tulsa and the Arkansas River Infrastructure Task Force.

Bynum has been a named a Person to Watch in 2017 as Tulsa’s 40th Mayor, who was sworn into office on Dec. 5.

Bynum is a fifth generation Tulsan with a record of civic service and a family history made up of former mayors.

Bynum ran on the platforms of returning Tulsa to its former status as a nationally-competitive world class city, improving education and the disparity between north and south Tulsa, and improving the city-county relationship.

Bynum convened the city’s leaders of early childhood, K-12 and higher education on his first full day in office to form the Mayor’s Education Cabinet with the focus on addressing the challenges faced by all education entities citywide.

Bynum’s staff includes Chief of Staff Jack Blair; former Mayor Kathy Taylor, chief of economic development; and Nick Doctor, community development and policy chief.


The Tulsa Garden Center announced the appointment of Laura Chalus as executive director in 2016.

Chalus specializes in successful fundraising and project management while bringing an entrepreneurial background to her knowledge, skills, and experience in community relations, non-profit administration, grants management, and database management. Chalus has an interesting challenge to bring the Tulsa Garden Center to its former excellent reputation. In 1957, Tulsa was designated as “America’s Most Beautiful City” in an article in Reader’s Digest Magazine. Among many attributes about Tulsa, the article cited the beauty of the Tulsa Rose Garden.
Unfortunately, the roses were devastated last summer by Rose Rosette’s Disease, and weeds filled the space.

Chalus will be working diligently to restore the reputation of the Tusla Garden Center. Judging by her past experience in motivating volunteers and organizations, Chalus should be an excellent choice to bring the Tulsa Rose garden to its past glory.


A Gathering Place for Tulsa has named Tony Moore park director. In his role, Moore will oversee park operations also for Guthrie Green.

Moore, a native of Jamaica, brings ample experience to Tulsa, previously serving as chief operating officer at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, Florida. Before holding that position, his roles have included corporate director for SeaWorld, director of operations for Discovery Cove and SeaWorld Orlando, director of environmental health and safety for all three SeaWorld Orlando parks, and director of culinary revenue for its water parks. Moore has also held leadership roles in operations at Universal Studios, Florida.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Central Florida.

A Gathering Place for Tulsa, a project of George Kaiser Family Foundation, is set to open phase 1 in late 2017 along Riverside Drive and the Arkansas River.

The $350-million park will include natural trails, a large green space, recreational water activities and educational programming.


Tulsa Bike Share has named native Tulsan Daniel Sperle executive director of Tulsa Bike Share, a not-for-profit corporation that is partnering with Tulsa Tough in order to bring bike sharing to Tulsa, starting with downtown.

The program, when its first phase launches in spring 2017, will begin to put Tulsa on the national trend of city bike-sharing services. Phase one will be the installation of 12 bike stations all located within the , with a total of 120 bicycles. Phase two will add an additional 12 stations near the University of Tulsa, Cherry Street and Brookside.

Sperle graduated from the University of Oklahoma with every intention of returning to Tulsa: “I wanted to move back after college to be a part of Tulsa’s revitalization. I believe this is a pivotal point in Tulsa’s development.”

Bike Share programs have been shown to increase mobility of local residents and visitors, to more greatly connect neighborhoods, improve health, and increase pedestrian traffic.


Captain Ken Chapman has shown strong leadership in his position with the Salvation Army since he relocated to Tulsa in June 2016. He is very positive about the generosity of the people of his new city, and he has already worked hard in innovative as well as traditional ways to raise funds for people in need.

Though Chapman was raised in a Salvation Army family, he has many years in the private sector. For 20 years, he was president and creative director for Creative Events International and won 22 industry awards as a producer. He was the music producer for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and executive producer for the Atlanta and Barcelona Paralympics Ceremonies. Chapman also produced the Easter Egg Roll for the Bush Administration at the White House in 2006 and produced Santa’s Traveling Workshop, a touring show that brought toys and hope to over 300,000 people affected by hurricane Katrina.

It will be interesting to watch Captain Chapman as he works to raise funds for the less fortunate.


Stephanie Cameron, 2017 chair of Tulsa’s Young Professionals, is state director for Dream It Do It Oklahoma and OK2Grow and community affairs director for APSCO Manufacturing.

Cameron was named as one of the ’s 2017 Women of the Year, the Journal Record’s 2016 50 Women Making a Difference, Tulsa World’s People to Watch in 2016 and a 2016 Journal Record Achiever Under 40.

As ros chair, Cameron’s focus will be on “people, purpose and play,” she says.

“TYPros is a volunteer-driven organization that is 9,000 members strong. In 2017, we’ll be celebrating, empowering and developing the individuals who make up our dynamic and diverse organization.”

The “purpose” of ros is to “provide a vehicle for young talent to have a voice, become civically engaged and actively participate in creating the Tulsa they want to call home.”

And regarding her focus on “play,” “Tulsa is a vibrant, active and family-friendly city. We see Tulsa as a hub for the arts, entertainment and state of the art parks.”


Dr. Gerard Clancy, previously a Person to Watch, continues in the Tulsa spotlight in his amazing career.

Dr. Clancy became president of the University of Tulsa after his role as vice president of health affairs and dean of the new Oxley College of Health Sciences.

Before arriving at TU on Jan. 1, 2015, Clancy served as president of the University of Oklahoma-Tulsa for eight years.

Through a $50 million donation from the George Kaiser Family Foundation, Clancy led the transformation of medical education at OU-Tulsa in 2008. In 2015 the College of Medicine’s Tulsa branch was renamed the OU – TU School of Community Medicine, a joint venture between the OU and TU to provide a four-year program of medical education in Tulsa.

At TU, Clancy launched the College of Health Sciences in 2015 and announced the new name of the Oxley College last fall.

Should Gerard Clancy experience the leadership success in his presidency at TU that he has had in his other positions in the past, look for greatness at TU.


Kimberly Johnson becomes the of the Tulsa City-County Library on Jan. 1, 2017, succeeding Gary Shaffer.

Johnson joined the library in 1998 as the first coordinator of the African-American Resource Center, where she established the library’s first countywide public tour to Oklahoma’s Historic All-Black Towns and Tulsa’s first countywide reading initiative.

Johnson went on to hold a number of positions within the library system, including as deputy director and chief innovation officer where she was instrumental in customizing library buildings and services to meet the demands of the 21st-century library customer. Most recently, she held the position of chief operating officer.

Johnson is a New York native who earned her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Tulsa and her Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Oklahoma.

In her new role, Johnson will develop and implement long-range plans for services and operations, execute the 2030 Facilities Master Plan and lead the public service side of the Central Library renovation project.


Phil B. Albert, president of Pelco Structural, , located in Claremore, will be the 2017 Tulsa Regional Chamber Board Chairman. This will be the first time in the history of the organization that the board chair’s business resides in a regional partner community outside of Tulsa.

Albert is an advocate of growth and currently serves many local and state-related boards, including being a board member of the Tulsa Regional Chamber and serving as the chairman of the Tulsa Regional Chamber’s 2015 Resource Campaign.

Albert started his career working for an accounting firm in Tulsa and moved to manufacturing in 1981. He spent 23 years at Engineering, the last 10 as president, and was responsible for all aspects of daily operations and strategic planning.

In 2005, Albert, along with partner, Phil Parduhn, opened Pelco Structural, , an infrastructure manufacturing company, located in Claremore. The company designs, engineers, and manufactures transmission, traffic and lighting, sports lighting, cellular transmission, signing, and substation structures.


Scott Stulen officially became Philbrook Museum of Art’s director on Aug. 22, 2016, succeeding Rand Suffolk.

Stulen looks forward to bringing a number of innovative exhibits and new ideas to Philbrook, in order to maintain the museum as one of the preeminent art museums in the central United States.

Before coming to Philbrook, Stulen worked as the Curator of Audience Experiences and Performance at the Indianapolis Museum of Art (), where he created and led the first curatorial department of its kind in the United States that is dedicated to audience experiences.

“Philbrook shares my philosophy that museum’s need to put the visitor first by creating experiences that inspire. This innovative thinking is at the forefront of our industry; I look forward to building on the current success to shape Philbrook’s future,” Stulen said.

Stulen holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and an in Painting and Drawing from the University of Minnesota.

Updated 12-28-2016

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