Mike Turpen to address SSC grads.

Mike Turpen, Oklahoma State Regent for Higher Education and a partner in the law firm of Riggs, Abney, Neal, Turpen, Orbison and Lewis, will be the featured speaker at the 81st Commencement Exercises for Seminole State College to be held Friday, May 9, at 10:30 a.m. in the Raymond Harber Field House.


Turpen is a native of Tulsa and attended the University of Tulsa, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in history. He received his Juris Doctorate Degree from the University of Tulsa College of Law.


Turpen was elected Attorney General of Oklahoma in 1982 and served until 1987. While no longer serving in public office, he remains politically active – appearing weekly on the Oklahoma City NBC affiliate KFOR’s public affairs television show, “Flashpoint.”

In 2009, Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry appointed Turpen to serve a nine-year term as a member of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.

Regent Turpen has received numerous awards, honors and appointments – including being inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2010. He was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the President’s Advisory Council on the Arts at the Kennedy Center in 1992, and was honored by the National Organization for Victim Assistance in 1986 as one of Ten Outstanding National Leaders in the Field of Victim Rights over the past decade. The previous year, Regent Turpen was listed in Esquire Magazine’s Register of ‘Men and Women Under Forty Who are Changing the Nation.


Following Turpen’s address at the Seminole State commencement, Dr. Melanie Croy, Vice President for Academic Affairs, will present degree candidates, and SSC President Dr. Jim Utterback will confer degrees.


Friday’s Commencement exercises will include a musical presentation by members of the SSC’s “Permanent Issue” band, Anna Smith of Maud, Damera Krenzer of Derby, Kansas and Seth Dean of Okemah.


An invocation will be delivered by Bill Wantland, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Seminole Nation. Processional and recessional music will be provided by Susan Gates.


Graduates of the SSC Nursing Program will end their day of graduation activities with a special “Pinning Ceremony” at the Enoch Kelly Haney Center. The nursing ceremony is scheduled for noon.


Campus offices will be closed to the public on Friday morning, May 10, to allow staff to prepare for the commencement exercises. Offices will open at 1:30 p.m.


For additional information concerning graduation activities, contact the Office of Admissions at 405-382-9230.