Press Releases 2020

30th Anniversary ADA. Image: Star. Americans With Disabilities Act.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Oklahoma City – Supporters of the Americans with Disabilities Act are the celebrating the 30th anniversary of the landmark civil rights law, which toppled barriers to employment, education and access to buildings for people with disabilities.

The ADA prohibits discrimination against...

Two photos: Woman holds long white cane. Woman wearing apron and masks stands beside tray of sub sandwiches.

Monday, June 15, 2020

NEWCASTLE, Okla. Concern about losing her remaining vision once held Sonya Cochran back more than her deaf-blindness, a condition many associate with American author, lecturer and humanitarian Hellen Keller.

Governor Kevin Stitt issued a proclamation recognizing Cochran as the official...

Young man with his hand on a computer mouse looks intently at laptop screen.

Friday, June 5, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Free Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) camps funded by the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services will be “online and doing fine” this summer in seven locations around the state.

DRS partners with Rick and Sherri DeDennaux from Tech-Now, Inc.to offer...

Three individual photos of two women and one man.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Oklahoma City ─ Tuesday, June 2, will mark the 100th anniversary of the Vocational Rehabilitation, the employment program for Americans and Oklahomans with disabilities.

The Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services leads this federal-state partnership, which earns $4 federal...

Eleven students who are graduating from the Oklahoma School for the Deaf - Class of 2020.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

SULPHUR — Eleven seniors will graduate June 6 from the Oklahoma School for the Deaf during a commencement ceremony that will be live streamed on YouTube beginning at 1 p.m. Only those with a ticket will be allowed to attend the banquet and graduation in person.

The OSD 2020 graduating...

Zoie's Senior picture

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Ardmore native, Zoie Zavala, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind.

Zavala received a Citizenship award, highest grade in my Algebra II class, 1st Place in Braille Class and an exceptional work ethic award for DECA.

After high school, she plan is to...

Emma Saunders senior picture

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Oklahoma City native, Emma Saunders, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind.

She received Most Improved Reading honor.

She participated in work study, Girl Scouts, 4-H, swimming and was a member of the Homecoming Court.

After high school,...

Kentrell Wallace

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Oklahoma City native, Kentrell Wallace, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind.

He received the Most Improved Wrestler award and won a Gold Medal at Cane Quest.

Wallace participated in Wrestling, Jazz, Band, Running Club, Braille Club, and Boy Scouts...

The Oklahoma School for the Blind graduating class of 2020. OSB mascot.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — The Oklahoma School for the Blind is proud to announce the senior class of 2020.

OSB is proud to announce this year's Valedictorian is Kaylee Ragon and the Salutatorian is Gabby King.

This year’s graduating class includes Allen Alender of Stillwater, Gabby King...

DePoris senior pic

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Sand Springs native, Deporis Willis, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind.

Willis was DRS’ People with Disabilities Awareness Day Student of the Year 2019-2020 and Student Council President.

His high school activities included participating in...

Chris' senior picture

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Sapulpa native, Chris Shepherd, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind.

He was in Band and work study.

After High School, Shepherd wants to have fun and raise a family.

He is the son of Travis and Kimberly Shepherd.

This year’s...

Gabby's senior picture

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Stigler native, Gabby King, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind. She earned the honor of Salutatorian for this year's graduating class.

King’s high school honors include first place in her age group for Braille Challenge and third Place in Cane Quest....

Allen's senior pic

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Stillwater native, Allen Alender, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind.

He was Student Council Vice-President during the 2019-2020.

During school he participated in Wrestling and Track and Field.

Alender’s dream is to one day own his own gym...

Kaylee's senior picture

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Tecumseh native, Kaylee Ragon, will graduate from the Oklahoma School for the Blind. She earned the honor of Valedictorian for this year's graduating class.

She participated in the state level for FCCLA Children’s Literate STAR Events and won in the 10th grade. She was...

Round ball with tufts sticking in it. Corona Virus Update. DRS logo.

Friday, April 10, 2020

Oklahoma School for the Deaf in Sulphur and Oklahoma School for the Blind in Muskogee will close March 17-April 6, along with other Oklahoma public schools, to protect the health and wellbeing of students and employees from coronavirus/COVID-19. There are no reported cases of the virus at the...

Four photos. Emily Cheng, Wes Hilliard, Jace Wofe, Melinda Fruendt, DRS logo. Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services. Oklahoma State Seal.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Commission for Rehabilitation Services will utilize ZOOM video conferencing to hold their first virtual meeting beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, April 13. The public is invited to join via computers, other connected devices or phones.

The Commission governs...

Three smiling women stand beside man holding an award.

Friday, April 3, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Assistant Attorney General Richard Olderbak was remembered with a Disability Leadership award by the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’ on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Olderbak’s son, Marshall Olderbak accepted the award on behalf of his deceased...

Two smiling women stand beside a woman holding an award.

Friday, April 3, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Paula Burkes from Edmond earned the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’ Excellence in Communications award on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Burkes has written and edited award-winning news stories for nearly 40 years. Since 2001, she has worked as a business...

Two smiling women beside a smiling man holding a folder with a gold seal.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services Executive Director Melinda Fruendt honored Office of Juvenile Affairs Director Steven Buck on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Buck began overseeing DRS as cabinet secretary of Human Services and Early Childhood Initiatives in...

Smiling woman stands beside woman with long white cane holding an award.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Samantha Reeves from Tulsa earned the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’ Blind and Visually Impaired Client of the Year award on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Reeves received her award on DRS’ 25th People with Disabilities Awareness Day.

Commission...

Two smiling women stand beside man holding an award.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Kevin Beaty from McAlester earned the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’ Vocational Rehabilitation Client of the Year award on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Beaty received his award on DRS’ 25th People with Disabilities Awareness Day.

Commission for...

Two smiling women stand next to a woman holding an award

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Sharon Breeding from Oklahoma City earned the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’ Community Partner of the Year award on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Breeding, who is past president and an Oklahoma Quarter Horse Association hall of fame member, rounds up 100...

Man gestures at a lectern as a smiling man and woman watch with a banner in the background

Thursday, March 26, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Roy and Rose Anna Webb from Haskell earned the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’ Business of the Year award on March 10 for their support of Oklahoma School for the Blind students.

State Representative Scott Fetgatter (District 16) presented an official...

Two women with young man holding an award.

Monday, March 23, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – De’Poris Willis from Sand Springs earned School for the Blind Student of the Year award from the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services’
Oklahoma on March 10 at the state Capitol.

Willis received his award on DRS’ 25th People with Disabilities Awareness Day...

Circle of cheveron shapes with star in the middle. Oklahoma Rehabilitation Services.

Friday, March 13, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services is following guidance from the office of Governor Kevin Stitt and the Oklahoma State Department of Health to protect public health and minimize potential risk from the respiratory illness novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19....

People with Disabilities Awareness Day circular logo with marking of 25th year of the event 1995-2020.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Oklahoma’s first mobile People with Disabilities Awareness Day is set for March 10, marking the first time Oklahomans with disabilities, their families and supporters can take part in the event from work, home or wherever they are.

“People with Disabilities Awareness Day is a critical...

Portrait of Tracy Brigham

Friday, February 28, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma City resident Tracy Brigham was elected treasurer of the National Council of State Agencies for the Blind.

Brigham is administrator of Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired, a division of the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services. She has been...

Two students hold a basketball

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

SULPHUR, Okla. – Oklahoma School for the Deaf will host seven teams for the Great Plains School for the Deaf basketball and cheer tournament February 6-8. The public is invited.

OSD is located at 1100 East Oklahoma Avenue in Sulphur.

A total of 280 students and coaches are expected...

A young girl holds a bowl of spaghetti.

Friday, January 17, 2020

SAPULPA, Okla. – Don't miss out on the Sapulpa Lions Club Bean Dinner on Jan. 30 at the Sapulpa First Baptist Church located at 124 S. Elm where Oklahoma School for the Blind students will be serving the public. The Sapulpa Lions Club members have prepared their family style beans and chili...

Building with sign Oklahoma School for the Deaf

Friday, January 17, 2020

SULPHUR, Okla. – The Oklahoma School for the Deaf will break ground Wednesday, January 22, on land reserved for a new Aquatic Activity Center and Safe Room in Sulphur.

The 10,000 square foot facility will include the pool, lobby, two locker rooms, concessions and restrooms.

The...

Monday, January 6, 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY - Proposed rule changes potentially affecting several programs for Oklahomans with disabilities will be the focus of a public hearing held by the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services and the Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council.

The public is encouraged to attend the...