Clarence Fortney became Great Plains Technology Center’s 7th superintendent on July 1, 2016. He succeeded Dr. Tom Thomas who served as superintendent for six years. During Dr. Thomas time at the helm Mr. Fortney served as Deputy Superintendent. He previously served as Director of Instruction, Director of Secondary Education and Director of Adult Career and Development. Mr. Fortney graduated from Great Plains high school welding program. He then became a teacher’s aide and lead welding instructor at GPTC before moving to the administration.
“Great Plains holds a special place in my life as I’ve either gone to school or worked here for 40 years”, Fortney said. “I’ve been fortunate to have learned from several Great Plains superintendents, especially the past three superintendents, Kenneth Bridges, the late Jim Nisbett and Dr. Thomas. They were all fiscally conservative, student centered and focused on economic development. I highly value those same traits.”
Fortney has served as Chairman of the Lawton Fort Sill Chamber of Commerce, President of the Lawton Fort Sill United Way Board of Directors and President of the Lawton Fort Sill Community Education Council. He is currently a board member of the Lawton Economic Development Corporation. He was appointed by former Gov. Brad Henry to serve on the Oklahoma Emergency Medical Services Council. He was named the Oklahoma Association of Career and Technology Education “Educator of the Year” for the Administrative Division in 2010. He is an avid bicyclist and immensely enjoys his grandchildren. He and his wife are active in their local church.
Karen Bailey succeeded Clarence Fortney as Deputy Superintendent in July of 2016. She had served as Director Academic Affairs and External Relations since 2006. She previously served as Student Communications Coordinator, Gifted and Talented Coordinator and as a high school and adult counselor. She has been employed at Great Plains since 1989. She shepherded Great Plains trail blazing efforts in developing two award winning STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) programs: Pre-Engineering and Biomedical Sciences and Medicine. She earned her bachelor degree at Cameron University and her master degree at Southwestern Oklahoma State University. Prior to working at Great Plains she worked as an instructor at Walters Public Schools. Karen is actively involved in the AUSA organization that supports the U.S. Army. Karen and her family are active in their local church.
Campus Director, Frederick
Bio coming soon.
Director of Instruction
James has been employed at GPTC since 1997. He previously taught Game Design and 3D Animation and E-Commerce Web Services at Great Plains. His bachelor degree is from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. He has also earned a Master of Science degree in Adult Education from the University of Central Oklahoma. He is active in his church and numerous civic organizations.
Director, Economic Development
Keith has led Great Plains economic development support efforts since 1993. He previously served as GPTC’s Director of Business and Industry Recruitment. Prior to working at Great Plains Keith served as CEO of the Tinney Corporation. He earned a bachelor degree from Cameron University. He has earned numerous state and national economic development certifications including the National Development Council Finance Certification. He has served on the Governor’s Economic Development Team since 1999. Keith has also held leadership positions in numerous local leadership, civic, arts and economic development organizations, including two terms as Chairman of the Lawton Airport Authority. He is currently a board member of both the Lawton Public Schools Foundation and the Comanche County Memorial Hospital “Starlight” Foundation. He is an avid golfer and is active in his local church.
Director, Marketing and Communication
Susan Hardy Brooks
Bio coming soon.
Leah is in her 20th year at Great Plains Technology Year. She began her career at GPTC in the Marketing Department and then became the Superintendent’s Administrative Assistant before assuming the treasurer’s position. She attended Cameron University. Leah is an accomplished photographer.
Director, Business and Industry Services
Morgan Gould is the Director of Business and Industry Services with Great Plains Technology Center in Lawton where he offers advising and training to entrepreneurs in Southwest Oklahoma. He works with those who want to start and/or grow their own businesses and his areas of specialty include business financing, financial analysis and accounting.
Prior to joining the EDC, Morgan worked in commercial lending for a local bank and before that, he worked for the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center and managed his own business.
In addition, he serves as the Chairman of the Lawton-Ft. Sill Chamber of Commerce Small Business Committee and volunteers in other local groups. He was named the 2013 Oklahoma Veteran Small Business Champion by the Small Business Administration and is a graduate of Leadership Lawton. Morgan is a Certified QuickBooks Proadvisor and a Certified Economic Development Finance Professional.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Southwestern Oklahoma State University and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Cameron University.
Rhonda has been employed as either the Business Manager or Assistant Business Manager at Great Plains for 31 years. She previously worked as a CPA at Stanfield and O’Dell Certified Public Accountants and as an accountant at the Kerr McGee Corporation. She is a graduate of Great Plains Technology Center’s high school business office program. She also earned degrees at both the University of Oklahoma and Cameron University.
Director, Student Support Services
Joelle is in her 12th year of employment at Great Plains. She previously worked as Great Plains Employment Advisor. Prior to Great Plains she served as Senior Director of Operations at the Marie Detty Youth and Family Services organization. She earned her bachelor degree at Colorado State University. She is an avid music lover and a supporter of local arts organizations.
Director, Instructional Support Services
William (Bill) Matthey
Bill was originally employed at Great Plains as a Desktop Support (I.T.) instructor in 2010. He was previously employed in public education in Idaho. Bill earned his BBA from Baylor University and his Master of Education Leadership at Idaho State University. He is an accomplished photographer and a member of the Wichita Wild Light Photographic Society. He is active in his church at Elgin.
Justin came to Great Plains this school year after serving as Assistant Senior Principal at Lawton High School. He has earned degrees from both Cameron University and Southwestern Oklahoma State University. He is an avid outdoorsman.
Director, Adult Career Development
John has been employed at Great Plains since 1990. Prior to serving as ACD Director John served as ACD Assistant Director, Adult Coordinator, Computer Technician and Instructor. He earned his Master of Education degree from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2002 after earning his BS degree from Cameron University. John has served as president of the Lawton-Fort Sill United Way Board and remains active in many local, state and national organizations.
Director, Health Sciences and STEM and ABE
Mike is in his 13th year of employment at Great Plains where he began as an instructor. He previously taught at Lawton Public Schools and was employed at the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife.
He earned his bachelor and master degrees from Cameron University. He is active in his local church and in many Lawton area civic and service organizations.