Governor Kevin Stitt today announced he has appointed attorney, nonprofit founder and philanthropist Tricia Everest as Secretary of Public Safety. If confirmed by the Senate, Everest will oversee over 55 agencies including the Department of Public Safety, the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, the Pardon and Parole Board, and the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.
“Tricia is a proven leader who has done a tremendous job over the last few years building successful relationships with law enforcement and delivering meaningful criminal justice reform for Oklahoma,” said Gov. Stitt. “I am confident Tricia’s wealth of experience and heartfelt passion for serving the state will translate into success in this role.”
“It is an honor to be appointed to serve in Governor Stitt’s Cabinet as Secretary of Public Safety,” said Everest. “As a native Oklahoman, I am deeply committed to the success of our state, especially when it comes to protecting our citizens and our communities, and I am ready to get to work to carry out Governor Stitt’s vision for a safe and just Oklahoma.”
Everest is an Oklahoma City native and 4th generation Oklahoman. She received her Bachelor of Science from Vanderbilt University, her Juris Doctor from University of Oklahoma School of Law, and an Honorary Doctorate in Humanities from Oklahoma City University.
Her professional law career led her to the Attorney General’s office where she represented the State of Oklahoma as assistant attorney general from 2004 to 2010. Everest currently serves as Chair of the Oklahoma County Criminal Justice Authority, a Trustee of E.L. and Thelma Gaylord Foundation and Chair of Inasmuch Foundation’s Advisory Committee.
She also plays an integral role as the founding chair of Palomar, Oklahoma City’s Family Justice Center, which removes barriers for abuse victims to access the services they need. Additionally, Everest was the founding chair of ReMerge, which diverts mothers from prison and empowers the women to build healthy foundations for themselves and their children.
Other philanthropic endeavors include chair of Allied Arts, past-chair of YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City, where she was the first female chair in the organization’s 128-year history, and service on numerous nonprofit boards.
In 2019, Tricia was inducted into the OCU Meinders Hall of Honor for Business and Commerce and received the state’s Highest Honor in 2019 with her induction into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame.
QUOTES OF ENDORSEMENT:
“I have known Tricia for many years and have had the pleasure of witnessing her unique ability to find solutions to difficult problems by way of her intelligence and strategic thinking, as well as her compassion and thoughtfulness for others. This tempered approach makes her perfect for this position. Tricia is a friend who I hold in the highest regard and commend Governor Stitt for another excellent appointment.” – Former Oklahoma Supreme Court Chief Justice Steven Taylor
“Tricia and I have known each other our whole lives and it has been an honor to work alongside her tackling our community’s biggest challenges, from homelessness to education to health and more. Tricia is an amazing servant leader whose ability to bring people together, regardless of their backgrounds, and solve tough issues is both admirable and critical for the improvement of our state. Her track record of working with and supporting law enforcement will also serve her well in this role. Tricia is passionate about helping Oklahomans and will thrive as Secretary of Public Safety.” – Inasmuch Foundation Chairman and CEO Robert J. Ross
“Tricia is a committed citizen with a genuine passion for helping others and making sure our justice system works. Whether it’s giving her time or her personal resources, Tricia is fully committed to everything she does. I have seen Tricia completely devote herself to learning and understanding an issue, rolling up her sleeves and helping build consensus around a solution, and I know she will bring that same tireless work ethic to state government. I could not be more pleased that Governor Stitt has nominated Tricia for this important role.” – Oklahoma City Chamber Roy Williams