The Oklahoma State Council on Aging elected Dr. Tom M. Lucas from Woodward as its incoming Chair on Sept. 5.

Dr. Lucas is a lifetime farmer and rancher. Now retired from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, he served as the coordinator of the High Plains Resource Conservation and Development Council in Buffalo and as the public affairs officer in Stillwater. He is a nationally known public speaker and has been called “Oklahoma’s second Will Rogers.” Dr. Lucas has received an Emmy Award, the Governor’s Award for Community Service, and was twice named Honorary Lt. Governor of Oklahoma by two different Lt. Governors.

The Oklahoma State Council on Aging is a unique blend of rural and urban people from all walks of life. It was established to champion the needs and issues confronting older Oklahomans and provides advice and information to the Oklahoma Department of Human Services. In their roles, members of the Oklahoma State Council have spoken to legislators at committee meetings, advocated at Stand up For Seniors and co-sponsored Senior Day at the Capitol.

“With more than 100 people in Oklahoma turning 65 every day, the need for effective aging services is critical,” said Dr. Lucas. “With the outstanding staff that Aging Services director Karen Poteet has assembled and their creative ideas, I believe Oklahoma is already a ‘top 10’ program and will soon lead the nation as the ‘number one’ aging services program. I look forward to serving as the Council Chair for the coming year.”

The Council is made up of 30 members. Three are appointed by the Governor, Senate Pro Tempore and the Speaker of the House. Others are nominated by state agencies or Area Agency on Aging Advisory Councils. Ten more members are designated as at-large. Eighteen of the 30 members must be over the age of 60.

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