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Norman taps headhunting firm for city manager search

Local News - Wed, 11/14/2018 - 7:15pm

By Josh Dulaney Staff Writer

NORMAN — Officials here cleared an initial hurdle this week in their hunt for a new city manager.

In a 5-4 vote Tuesday, the city council approved a $24,500 contract with Minnesota-based executive recruitment firm Springsted Waters to search for a replacement for Steve Lewis, who left the post in September for a similar job in Texas.

Springsted Waters competed against SGR, a firm based in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Ward 1 Councilwoman Kate Bierman voted for Springsted Waters based on their pitch to the city.

“What struck me the most is that they sent their A squad,” Bierman told the council.


I-35 northbound lanes shut down Wednesday north of Purcell

Local News - Wed, 11/14/2018 - 8:10am

From Staff Reports

A jack-knifed tractor-trailer on Interstate 35 has shut down northbound lanes Wednesday north of Purcell in McClain County, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol reported.

The wreck happened about 5 a.m.


Re-enactor shares life of a drover at genealogy meeting

Local News - Mon, 11/12/2018 - 4:09pm


NORMAN — The public is invited to hear a drover's description of life on the Chisholm Trail presented by the Cleveland County Genealogical Society.

Mike Sheriff will don his drover's authentic period attire as he tells what it was like on the Chisholm Trail in the 1870s.


$68 million to help 12,000 Oklahoma students GEAR UP for college

Local News - Wed, 11/07/2018 - 6:25pm

By K.S. McNutt Staff Writer

NORMAN — Three federal grants to boost success beyond high school will target 12,000 pupils in 46 schools across the state, including every sixth- and seventh-grader in the Oklahoma City Public Schools.

The University of Oklahoma K20 Center announced Wednesday it was awarded GEAR UP grants totaling $68 million to work with three cohorts of middle-schoolers — one urban, one rural and one suburban.

"This is absolutely a game-changer," said Gregg Garn, dean of the OU College of Education and executive director of the K20 Center.

"The GEAR up program is focused on getting kids ready academically, financially and emotionally to get into college and successfully graduate," Garn said.


Holiday shopping to pop up in Norman

Local News - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 9:22pm


NORMAN — STASH will be hosting its third annual holiday pop-up shopping party from 6 to 9:30 p.m.


University of Oklahoma lays off 50 in first phase of staff reductions

Local News - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 4:34pm

By K.S. McNutt Staff Writer  

NORMAN — The University of Oklahoma cut approximately 50 staff positions Thursday in ongoing efforts to bring expenses in line with income.

A university spokeswoman said this is the first phase of layoffs and further layoffs may come next year as departmental efficiency plans are submitted and refined.

"Because this will be a constant process of evaluating efficiencies within the university, there is no timeline for layoffs," she said.


Now streaming: OU professor leads dry stream research across U.S.

Local News - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 6:20pm

By Josh Dulaney Staff Writer

NORMAN — Cutting under a bridge along East Indian Hills Road near Norman, Elm Creek transforms from pool to riffle and teems with midges, detritivores and oligochaetes.

Big words for bugs and worms.

Listen long enough to Daniel C. Allen, a 38-year-old biology professor at the University of Oklahoma, and you will learn which bugs are predator or prey, the value of filter-feeder insects and why the tiger beetle, with its metallic blue armor, stops by the water on occasion.

“There's a lot of ways to make a living in the stream,” Allen said.

Even when the water disappears.

Allen is leading a $3 million research project across the United States to study what happens to streams when they dry.


Body found Tuesday near Norman homeless shelter

Local News - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 3:11pm

From Staff Reports

NORMAN -- The body of a man was found in Bishop's Creek Tuesday near a homeless shelter, the Cleveland County Sheriff’s office reported.

The man, who is described as white and in his 40s, was found on state property located just south of Food and Shelter For Friends, 201 Reed Avenue.

The sheriff’s office took over the investigation Tuesday afternoon, a spokeswoman said.



Norman native serves aboard floating airport at sea

Local News - Mon, 10/29/2018 - 7:32pm

By Bill Steele For The Oklahoman

BREMERTON, Wash. — A Norman native and 2016 Norman North High School graduate is serving aboard the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis, a floating airport at sea.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jonathan Galbraith is an electronics technician (nuclear) serving aboard the carrier.

A Navy electronics technician (nuclear) is responsible for operating the nuclear reactor that provides energy for the ship and maintaining reactor safety.

“I'm new to the ship and still in basic nuclear qualifications training,” said Galbraith.

About 3,200 men and women make up the crew of John C. Stennis, with an additional 2,000 sailors assigned to the ship's embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing 9.

Named in honor of former Sen.


Norman proclaims November as Veterans Month; Veteran’s Day parade and memorial ceremony planned

Local News - Mon, 10/29/2018 - 7:29pm


Norman Mayor Lynne Miller has proclaimed November as Veterans Month as the city plans the upcoming 2018 Veterans Day Parade and Memorial Ceremony.

The Nov.


Two people killed in Norman crash Saturday identified

Local News - Mon, 10/29/2018 - 2:33pm

From Staff Reports

NORMAN -- Two men died Saturday morning in a southeast Norman crash, police reported.

The men have been identified as Jeffery Muehring, 49, of Norman,  and Gregory Higgins Jr., 41, of Mustang.

Muehring was the driver of a vehicle going south on 60th Avenue SE when he drove off the roadway and the vehicle hit a tree.


Texas woman in critical condition after being hit by pickup in Norman

Local News - Fri, 10/26/2018 - 11:57am

From Staff Reports

NORMAN — A 27-year-old woman is in critical condition after she was struck Thursday by a pickup while crossing a street, police said.

Just after 7 p.m.


Funds will assist Cleveland County Drug Court with housing, transportation

Local News - Tue, 10/23/2018 - 3:54pm


Cleveland County Commissioners recently accepted a $550,000 grant for Cleveland County Drug Court from the U.S. Department of Justice.

The grant will allow the program to hire a full-time case manager dedicated to drug court participants and will subsidize increased drug testing and lab confirmations.

“We are thrilled to have received the grant award,” said Judge Michael Tupper.


Norman educator receives award, $25,000 check

Local News - Tue, 10/23/2018 - 3:28pm

By Tim Willert Staff Writer

NORMAN — Hailey Couch looked around the Madison Elementary School gymnasium Tuesday morning wondering who was about to receive a prestigious Milken Educator Award and a check for $25,000.

The fourth-year kindergarten teacher had no clue her name was about to be called.

"They started talking and I just had all these names in my head like, 'Ooh, it could be her, it could be her, it could be her,'" she said.



Local News - Tue, 10/23/2018 - 3:23pm

Roger Harris, who is responsible for maintenance of the Cleveland County Fairgrounds, recently was recognized for going above and beyond to serve the residents of Cleveland County.

Cleveland County Commissioner Darry Stacy honored Harris during a Board of County Commissioners meeting.

On Sept.


Norman police seize meth worth millions

Local News - Tue, 10/23/2018 - 1:49pm

From Staff Reports

NORMAN — Police on Monday seized more than 1,260 pounds of liquid methamphetamine during a bust at a hotel.

Just after 9 a.m., Norman officers were conducting an investigation of a tractor-trailer in the parking lot of the hotel.


Norman’s NextThought connects the dots for online learners

Local News - Mon, 10/22/2018 - 4:52pm

By Jim Stafford For The Oklahoman

NORMAN — When my daughter enrolled in an online college class, I had an image of her being alone on an island, connected only to the course material by way of a computer, with little interaction from the instructor.


National Severe Storms Laboratory unveils weather radar research prototype

Local News - Thu, 10/18/2018 - 6:28pm

By Silas Allen Staff Writer

NORMAN — Officials at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Severe Storms Laboratory unveiled a new system Thursday that they hope will give forecasters more accurate information more quickly as severe weather approaches.

The Advanced Technology Demonstrator is a $38 million research prototype for a system that, if successful, could be rolled out across the country within the next 20 years.

The system, located just east of Max Westheimer Airport, is the first to combine two weather prediction technologies: phased-array radar, which allows forecasters to look across a wide area more quickly than conventional radar allows, and dual polarization, which gives forecasters information about what type of precipitation is falling within a storm.

Now that the research prototype is up and running, researchers will begin looking at how to use the technology to improve weather forecasts, said Kurt Hondl, program manager at the severe storms lab.

Phased-array radar represents a substantial improvement over the conventional NEXRAD systems that are in place at National Weather Service forecast offices across the country, Hondl said.

Conventional radar systems use a dish to focus radar beams on a single area.


OHP trooper charged, accused of harassing women

Local News - Thu, 10/18/2018 - 5:42pm

By Josh Wallace Staff Writer

NORMAN — A former University of Oklahoma football player and current Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper was charged Wednesday, accused of abusing law enforcement technology to stalk and harass women he met at a local gym.

Rodney Lynn Rideaux, 40, was charged Wednesday in Cleveland County District Court on five counts of unauthorized use of the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Telecommunication System.


Public invited to Oct. 24 open house on updated Americans with Disabilities Act Transition Plan

Local News - Thu, 10/18/2018 - 1:29pm


NORMAN — The city of Norman is inviting community members to provide input on the city's updated Americans with Disabilities Act Transition Plan during an open house at 3 p.m.