Oklahoma coverage

  • Several Stillwater residents have been asking questions referencing the City of Stillwater’s annual events happening this year in wake of the pandemic, according to information from the Perry Daily Journal. Provided


Craig County’s Northeast Oklahoma Correctional Center (NOCC) had an increase in positive COVID-19 cases reported this past weekend, and is currently designated as a hotspot for COVID-19 with the Oklahoma State Department of Corrections (OSDC), according to information reported by OSDC Communications Director Jessica Brown Monday.

The report coincided with the rise in cases reported from the new daily report released by the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH), the Vinita Daily Journal reported.

As of 11:30 a.m. Monday, the OSDH’s Daily COVID-19 report showed an increase in Craig County’s overall positive cases, up by 194 new cases since Friday’s report, the VDJ reported.

OSDH’s report Monday showed a total of 379 positive cases since March, with one death and 133 recoveries, which means there is currently a net count of 245 active positive cases in the county, the VDJ reported.

The number of cases confirmed Monday from NOCC included 202 positive cases of inmates with 4 reported recoveries and 28 positive cases of staff, with 3 recoveries, the VDJ reported.

Oklahoma City

Gov. Kevin Stitt congratulated 2018 Oklahoma Teacher of the Year and 2019 National Teacher of the Year Finalist Donna Gradel for her selection to The National Teachers Hall of Fame.

Gradel taught environmental science at Broken Arrow High School from 1996-2020 before joining Summit Christian Academy as dean of academic development and innovation this summer, Gov. Stitt’s office reported.

“Donna Gradel moved beyond the textbook by taking her classroom outside to partner with the city of Broken Arrow to clean public water and by taking the classroom to the world by developing a system to provide sustainable food sources for orphans in Kenya,” Gov. Stitt said. “She is a perfect candidate to be enshrined in The National Teachers Hall of Fame and show the country how Oklahoma can be Top 10 in education.”

The National Teachers Hall of Fame announced its five-member Class of 2020 during a YouTube Live broadcast Monday night. Gradel will be officially inducted June 18, 2021, at a ceremony in Emporia, Kansas, the governor’s office reported.

Oklahoma City

Two members of the Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s (ODOT) leadership are set to continue their impact on transportation in new positions, ODOT reported.

Shawn Davis joins ODOT as director of operations and will lead the field divisions as they conduct construction and maintenance projects across the state, ODOT reported.

Bill Wilkinson is moving into the Division 3 construction engineer role and will supervise construction projects for the south-central portion of the state, ODOT reported.

Davis was named director of operations for ODOT in August 2020. Davis joins ODOT after serving as Director of Construction for the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority, beginning there in 2018, ODOT reported.

Wilkinson was named Division 3 Construction Engineer for the ODOT in August 2020. He is responsible for the planning and execution of construction activities in 11 counties in south-central Oklahoma, including portions of the Oklahoma City metro, ODOT reported.


Several Stillwater residents have been asking questions referencing the City of Stillwater’s annual events happening this year in wake of the pandemic, according to information from the Perry Daily Journal.

The pandemic, and the factors following the spread, have restricted many events and celebrations throughout the state, the PDJ reported.

The City of Stillwater, after much deliberation and consideration, has announced event cancellations through the month of November,” the PDJ reported.

Due to safety concerns around the current pandemic, the City has cancelled the following 2020 recreational events: Mummy and Son Dance; Downtown Halloween Festival; and Breakfast with Santa.

“We are extremely disappointed that we must cancel these events. This was a difficult decision, but it was made with the public’s safety in mind,” Community Resources Manager Barbara Bliss commented on a City of Stillwater Facebook post.


Several families across Noble County and the State of Oklahoma recently received debit cards, with names of their students, in their mailbox, the Perry Daily Journal reported.

This came as a surprise to many, and several thought the card and attached letter detailing information for its use a scam; an attempt at possible fraud, the PDJ reported.

Contrarily, the card (titled a PEBT card), issued by combined departments within the state of Oklahoma, is legitimate; complete with funds to use for the purchase of food items.

P-EBT or, “Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer,” provides extra food benefits for families with school-aged children who would have received free or reduced-priced school meals through the National School Lunch Program and who also meet certain eligibility criteria, the PDJ reported.

State departments Oklahoma Department of Human Services and the Oklahoma State Department of Education worked together during the summer to create a plan ensuring every eligible household across the state could access benefits without needing to complete an application, the PDJ reported.