Monthly Archives: March 2009

Don Smitherman announces GOP Vice-Chair candidacy


CONTACT:       Cheryl Williams

405/818-8481 or

Former congressional field representative and Norman attorney L. Don Smitherman has announced that he will seek the Vice-Chairman slot for the Oklahoma Republican Party at the Republican State Convention on Saturday, April 18, 2009.

Party rules require the Chair and Vice Chair to be of different gender.  Smitherman will team with current State Vice-Chair Cheryl Williams in her campaign for Oklahoma GOP Chairmanship.

 “I am honored to join with Cheryl to lead the Oklahoma Republican Party into the very important 2010 election cycle.  I believe, as Cheryl does, that to be successful, the Republican Party must be unified, organized, well-funded and welcoming,” Smitherman said. “We simply must focus on our core purpose of electing Republicans to office while embracing the “big tent” party philosophy of our founder, Abraham Lincoln.”

 Smitherman received his Bachelor of Business Administration Degree in Finance from the University of Oklahoma in 1989 and his Juris Doctorate from the OU College of Law in 1992.  He served as field representative and staff counsel for Congressman J.C. Watts from 1995 to 1998.  He has been a practicing attorney since leaving Watts’ office in 1998.  Throughout his legal career, Don has also served as an Oklahoma Merit Protection Commissioner and as an adjunct professor at Rose State College.  Finally, he played both football and baseball for OU from 1985 – 1989. 

 “As a lifelong athlete, I know what it means to be a member of a team and know the importance of unity and focus to the success of that team,” Smitherman continued.  “I also know that members of a team don’t play the same positions, don’t look the same and often don’t agree with the play called in the huddle.  Yet, the truly successful teams put those differences to work for them and unify under a common goal.  I look forward to helping the Oklahoma Republican Party build the unity and focus that we must have to win in 2010,”

 “I am thrilled that Don has agreed to be a candidate for Vice Chairman.  He is a bright, young and energetic leader who brings much to the Oklahoma GOP table.  Don Smitherman truly epitomizes the future of the Republican Party and I am honored that he has joined our team,” Williams concluded. 


Thank you to the Team!

It is amazing what can be accomplished when nobody cares about who gets the credit. (Robert Yates)

This old saying speaks volume about those within the Oklahoma Republican party that always want to take the credit for anything good, but not responsibility for all the rest.   

When Oklahoma became the only RED state in November 2008, it wasn’t the leadership that made it happen!  It was each man, woman, teenager, and child who had helped to knock on doors, register voters, encourage their neighbors to vote for our candidate(s), and give financially to the cause that made it happen.    Oklahoma voters are conservative in their viewpoint (regardless of party affiliation) and they ‘vote for the person’.    Republican activists simply helped them to decide to vote for our candidates.

We must say “thanks” to our US Senator Jim Inhofe for leading our efforts in Oklahoma.   With his campaign airing some of the best political commercials in the nation, voters  recognized the need to support the conservative candidate on the ballot (in almost every campaign).   We also must thank our Republican Congressional members for their campaign efforts which solidified the conservative message.   We are grateful for all of them supporting the Republican message with their campaign materials and commercials.  

There were many others who made November 4th a night to remember.    As Republicans finally gained the majority status in the State Senate … and Republicans elected a significant majority in the State House… we must thank each of those who gave to our candidates with their time, their talent, and the finances.    It was definitely a collaborative effort!

As Vice Chair, I have traveled more than 15,000 miles to every corner of the state since being elected in April 2007.  It was my pleasure to speak at meetings of clubs, counties, activists, etc.   Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your area of our state!    As we raised precious dollars for our candidates, and helped many of them get elected, we all played a part in making history.    It wasn’t what any one person did… it was what WE did as a team!    Thanks for being a part of the Republican team! 

On April 18th, Oklahoma Republicans will decide who will be Chair of the party for the next 2 years.    If I am elected Chair, I hope that I can follow Henry Ford’s example:   “Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.”   May the Oklahoma Republican party be successful in the work that lays ahead.    If you will be a delegate to the State Convention, I ask for your vote and support to become your next Chair.   Because TOGETHER we can WIN in 2010!

The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual. (Vince Lombardi, football coach for the NFL 1913-1970)

Cheryl Williams

Vice Chair, Oklahoma Republican Party