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Henryetta Free-Lance 01/20/2016

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Page 6A Wednesday, January 20, 2016 Henryetta Free-Lance

AT&T Supports SSC Presidents Leadership Class Program

To help Seminole State

College prepare students for
leadership roles in their communities and the State, AT&T
has made a $10,000 contribution in support of their efforts.
Few things are more important
to the future of our state than
teaching the skills of leadership
to the next generation, said
Manager-External Affairs Jan
Moran. We believe very
strongly in our obligation to
give back and to invest in
organizations that are investing
in our future, so we are very
pleased to be able to make this
contribution to support the work
of the Presidents Leadership
Class program at Seminole
State College.
Foundation contribution will
Leadership Class program in
preparing members of this
group to develop their leadership skills and take on leadership roles on campus, in the
community and throughout
Oklahoma. The group is composed of diverse populations
representing under-represented
minorities, first-generation college students and students from
small, rural communities. The
Presidential Leadership Class
provides students with unique
opportunities to foster their
leadership skills while developing academic growth, said
President, Dr. James Utterback
who instituted the program in
2007. We are very appreciative of AT&Ts commitment to
our program and to the students
participating in it.
PLC is a two-year scholarship program created to help
students develop leadership
skills and provide personal and
professional growth opportunities. The scholarship program
was established to provide educational
extracurricular activities to
enhance leadership skills of students. Responsibilities of PLC
members include volunteering
for campus service programs
and campus events. School
officials throughout the colleges service area of Seminole,
Lincoln, Pottawatomie, Hughes

and Okfuskee counties are

invited by SSC President
Utterback to nominate high
school seniors as candidates for
the scholarship program each
year. Participants are selected
based on ACT scores, academic
performance in high school and
demonstrated leadership ability.
We work very hard in the
state legislature in support of
policies to ensure that our children receive the best education
possible, an education that prepares them for the challenges
and opportunities of the future,
said State Senator Jason
Smalley. This contribution by
AT&T is greatly appreciated by
all of us in this community,
because it will help Seminole
State continue its efforts to educate the leaders of tomorrow.
Added State Representative
Tom Newell, In addition to
making sure our kids learn
about the basics, it is imperative

that we work with them to instill

values like leadership. Thats
why the work of the Presidents
Leadership Class is so valuable,
and Id like to thank AT&T for
this contribution that will help
President Utterback and his colleagues continue their efforts.
AT&T is one of world's
largest communications companies connecting customers with
a broad range of wireless voice
and data services. In 2015,
AT&T again ranked among the
50 Most Admired Companies
by FORTUNE magazine.
The company is committed to
enriching and strengthening
communities across the country
through the AT&T Foundation.
AT&T supports programs that
address quality-of-life issues,
with an emphasis on improving
education and advancing community development. With a
desire to raise high school graduation rates, AT&T helps pre-

Pictured left to right are: Delila Loftis, Paden; McKayla Hendrix, Tula; State
Representative Tom Newell (R-Seminole); Xavier Freeman, Seminole; AT&T Oklahoma
Area Manager-External Affairs Jan Moran; Denver Rogers, Holdenville; State Senator
Jason Smalley (R-Stroud); Austin Vega, Seminole; SSC President Dr. Jim Utterback;
Paige Vanlandingham-Seminole; and Kinzey Bryan, Bowlegs.
(Photo Provided)

pare students for college and

careers through their signature

education initiative, AT&T

Aspire. To date, AT&T has

committed $350 million to the


16 counties to receive emergency funds for critical flood control dam repairs


rainiest year on record, 2015
left over 60 of Oklahomas
flood control dams severely
damaged. Following authorization by Governor Mary
Fallin to transfer $1.8 million
from the state emergency
fund to qualify Oklahoma for
USDA Natural Resources
(NRCS) emergency funds, 16
counties will receive critical
repairs to their flood control
Affected counties are:
Atoka, Caddo, Carter, Coal,
Custer, Garvin, Grady,
Hughes, Kiowa, Latimer,
Love, McClain, Pittsburg,
Pontotoc, Seminole and
Lives and property across
the state depend on the safe
function of these small flood
Executive Director Trey
Lam. Even during challenging budget years, we must
make provisions to keep our
citizens safe. We are grateful
for Governor Fallins wise
and prudent decision.

31 OCC and NRCS officials, including NRCS National Watershed Team Leader Kevin
Farmer, survey 12-20 feet deep erosion cuts formed by rushing water during storms in
2015 in the auxiliary spillway of Caddo Creek Dam 27.
(Photo Provided)

In 2015, Oklahomas flood

control dams collectively
prevented $280 million in
flood damages. By comparison, the average annual cost
of maintaining them is $2
million. Major infrastructure
such as Interstate-35 and

regional population centers

such as Seminole and
Wilburton enjoy the protection and economic security
they provide. Were the dams
around Seminole to go unrepaired, for example, portions
of US-270, OK-3E and OK-

56 could be washed away

during another major rainfall
These small flood control
dams act as a network, said
Conservationist for Water

January 25, 2016 3:37 pm /

Together, they can capture

fast moving flood water over
a wide area and slowly
release it downstream. If
dams begin to deteriorate, the
pressures on downstream
towns and infrastructure
In the case of Eufaula Lake
and its surrounding communities, 297 small flood control dams capture flood water
and sediment upstream
before reaching the large
Eufaula Dam. Many of these
flood control dams are
including in the upcoming
emergency repairs.
Its important that we not
lose sight of the larger operation, maintenance, and
upgrade issues surrounded
Oklahomas flood control
Division Director
Tammy Sawatzky. The
emergency funds are for
immediate repairs where
lives may be in direct jeopardy. They do not alleviate
the ongoing upkeep needs of
all 2,107 flood control dams
managed by conservation