Board of Directors
The management of OAMIC is vested by our Board of Directors. The Board consists of 16 directors, 15 of whom are elected by the Policyholders. The sixteenth director is the current President-Elect of the Oklahoma Bar Association. Read below to learn more about our Board.
J. Angela Ables
Ms. Ables graduated from East Central University with honors in 1972 and Oklahoma City University School of Law in 1975. She worked in the Washington, D.C., office of U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Carl Albert before joining the staff of the Office of the Oklahoma Attorney General where she worked for 6 years. After serving as an assistant attorney general, she went to the Oklahoma insurance commissioner’s office where she served as the deputy insurance commissioner for 5 years before leaving to join the law firm of Kerr, Irvine, and Rhodes in 1985. In 1988, she became a partner in the firm. The name was changed to Kerr, Irvine, Rhodes & Ables and she has served as president of the firm since 1999. Ms. Ables serves as a board member of the Oklahoma High Risk Pool, chair of the Oklahoma Bar Association Group Insurance Committee and director emeritus of Lyric Theatre. She is a member and former chair of the board of the Federation of Regulatory Counsel, a nationally recognized regulatory law organization.
David A. Burrage
Mr. Burrage graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 2002 and is the lead attorney at Burrage Law Firm in Durant. He has served as the vice president of the Bryan County Bar Association and council member for the City of Durant. He is currently an associate bar examiner and a member of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority. Mr. Burrage also serves as judge for the Choctaw Nation.
Benjamin J. Butts
Mr. Butts graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1983. He practiced at what eventually became Short Wiggins Margo & Butts for 22 years before forming Butts & Marrs, where he has practiced since 2006. He was a member of the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel from 1992 to 2005, a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association Rules of Professional Conduct Committee from 1996 to 2002, president of the American Board of Trial Advocates in 2011, president of the William J. Holloway Jr. American Inn of Court in 2012 and 2013 and was chair of the Local Civil Rules Committee for the U.S. District Court, Western District of Oklahoma, from 2010 to 2014. Mr. Butts is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and a member of the Litigation Counsel of America.
Mr. Eller has practiced law since 1976 and is an officer, director and shareholder of the law firm of Eller & Detrich, PC in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He has previously served as an adjunct professor of law at the University of Tulsa and as an adjunct settlement judge for the District Court of Tulsa County. He has also served on the Tulsa County Bar Association Grievance Committee and as a director and president of the University of Tulsa Golden Hurricane Club and the Sooner Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Additionally, Mr. Eller is a former director, vice chair and general counsel of the Tulsa Metro Chamber of Commerce. He currently serves as a trustee and chairman of the Tulsa Industrial Authority and as a director of i2E, Inc. Mr. Eller has previously served as chair of the Insurer Board.
Simone G. Fulmer
Ms. Fulmer is a litigator at The Fulmer Group, working primarily in insurance coverage and bad faith litigation and class actions. She is admitted to the bar in all Oklahoma state and federal courts and 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Ms. Fulmer is a member of the Oklahoma Association for Justice, American Association for Justice, Oklahoma Bar Association and Oklahoma County Bar Association. She has taught on insurance and bad faith litigation in Oklahoma and nationally. Prior to joining Mr. Whitten in 1998 representing policyholders in all types of insurance matters, she worked as an attorney for Globe Life & Accident Insurance Company. As a law student, she was a pupil of the Luther Bohanon American Inn of Court from 1995 to 1996. The University of Oklahoma College of Law honored her in 1995 with an Academic Achievement in Trial Techniques award and in 1996 she was honored as a member of the Order of Barristers. Ms. Fulmer graduated cum laude from Oklahoma Baptist University and received her J.D. from the University of Oklahoma College of Law, graduating with distinction. She is on the boards of Oklahoma Lawyers for Children and Oklahoma Association for Justice and is involved in IMPACT Oklahoma.
Mr. Hicks practices in Tulsa with the firm of Barrow & Grimm PC. His focus is on the litigation and transactional needs of individuals and businesses. He also represents clients in probate, estate planning and family law matters. He attended OU and obtained a B.A. in finance before attending the TU College of Law. Admitted to practice in 1985, he served as a member of the OBA Board of Governors from 2015 to 2019. He also served as president of the Tulsa County Bar Association from 2013 to 2014 and of the Tulsa County Bar Foundation from 2017 to 2019. He has been recognized as an outstanding young lawyer by the TCBA and received the TCBA President’s Award. In 1995, he was recognized as the outstanding young lawyer by the OBA.
Cody B. Hodgden
Mr. Hodgden has practiced law since 1995 and is a partner in the Hodgden Law Firm in Woodward. He previously served as president of the Woodward County Bar Association and as chair of Woodward County Law Day and the Boiling Springs Legal Institute. Mr. Hodgden served on the Oklahoma Bar Association Professional Responsibility Tribunal from 2007 to 2013 and on the boards of Woodward Industrial Foundation, Woodward Education Foundation, Woodward Health Services Foundation and MidFirst Bank Advisory Board.
James A. Jennings
Mr. Jennings graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1974. Mr. Jennings spent more than 3 years as an assistant district attorney in Oklahoma County. He then entered private practice, remaining with the firm ultimately known as Holloway Dobson Bachman & Jennings for 23 years. In 2000, Mr. Jennings formed Jennings Cook & Teague, where he remains in practice. He is a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association, Oklahoma County Bar Association and American Bar Association. He is a member of the Defense Research Institute, International Association of Defense Counsel and a sustaining member of the Product Liability Advisory Council. He is also a fellow of the Litigation Counsel of American Trial Lawyers Honorary Society and an associate of the American Board of Trial Advocates. He has been named an Oklahoma Super Lawyer for 2006, 2007, and 2008. He is AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell. Mr. Jennings serves as a member of the board of directors of the Chickasaw Banc Holding Co. and Bank2.
Michael C. Mayhall
Mr. Mayhall has practiced law since 1975 and is a shareholder of Godlove, Mayhall, Dzialo, Dutcher & Erwin, PC in Lawton. He served on the Oklahoma Bar Association Board of Governors from 1990 to 1992, as 1988 president of the Comanche County Bar Association, as vice president of the Oklahoma Bar Association in 1998 and as a former trustee on the Board of Trustees of the Oklahoma Bar Foundation. Mr. Mayhall has served on several Oklahoma Bar Association committees including serving as chair of the Taxation Section in 1980. He is also a certified public accountant.
W. Chad McLain
Mr. McLain is a founding member of the law firm Graves McLain PLLC in Tulsa. He served as the president of the board of the Oklahoma Association for Justice and Tulsa Lawyers for Children, a nonprofit organization providing legal services to deprived children through the Tulsa County juvenile court system. He is on the board of the Tulsa County Bar Foundation and previously served as chair of the capital campaign to revitalize the Tulsa County Bar Center. Mr. McLain has held leadership positions within the Tulsa County Bar Association and Tulsa County Bar Foundation for many years, including chair of the Law Week, Community Outreach and Bench & Bar committees and chair of the Pro Bono Celebration. He is past president of the Board of Governors for the Summit Club and past president of Board of Directors for the University of Tulsa Golden Hurricane Club.
Richard D. Nix
Mr. Nix has practiced in the field of employee benefits and executive compensation law since 1985 and previously served as the managing director of McAfee & Taft. He is a member of the Oklahoma County, Oklahoma and American bar associations and the Oklahoma City Employee Benefits Conference. He has served as secretary/treasurer with the IRS Midstates EP/EO Council and on the Board of Directors of SouthWest Benefits Association. Mr. Nix currently serves on the boards of YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City and Calm Waters, Inc. and on the Board of Trustees for the Oklahoma City National Memorial Foundation and OU Medical Center.
Philip R. Richards
Mr. Richards graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1983 and, after a year as a Stephens County assistant district attorney, has spent his career in Tulsa as a civil trial lawyer primarily representing businesses and insurers in state and federal courts throughout Oklahoma. In 1997, he formed the firm that is now Richards & Connor. He is admitted to practice before all Oklahoma trial and appellate courts, all federal district courts in Oklahoma, 10th Circuit Court of Appeals and U.S. Supreme Court. He served as president of the Oklahoma Association of Defense Counsel and is a master emeritus of the Hudson-Hall-Wheaton Chapter of the American Inn of Court and a member of the Federation of Defense and the Corporate Counsel and a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, having served as Oklahoma state chair. He has taught continuing education and authored papers on insurance coverage, bad faith litigation, trial practice and constitutional jurisprudence. Published decisions in cases he has handled include matters of insurance coverage, bad faith liability, ERISA, medical malpractice, governmental liability, tort liability and commercial litigation. He is listed in The Best Lawyers In America, Oklahoma Super Lawyers (Top 50, 2006-present; Top 10, 2011-present) and a Top Lawyer in Financial Services by Corporate Counsel magazine.
Sara Smith Royster
Ms. Royster joined Frederic Dorwart, Lawyers in December 2013 after practicing for 7 years at Jones, Gotcher & Bogan, PC in Tulsa, where she primarily practiced in commercial litigation, focusing in real estate, construction, employment and banking. Her practice now includes regulatory compliance in the banking industry, particularly residential mortgage lending and loan servicing governed by the Consumer Federal Protection Bureau. She graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 2004 with a B.A. in international business and received her J.D. from the University of Tulsa in 2007. Ms. Royster is member of the Federal District Courts for the Eastern, Northern and Western districts of Oklahoma and the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Ms. Royster is also admitted to practice in Illinois.
R. Scott Savage
Mr. Savage graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1978. He spent the next 26 years, 22 as a partner, with the Tulsa firm of Moyers, Martin, Santee & Imel and 5 years as general counsel for American Central Gas Technologies. He previously served as of counsel to Richards & Connor and was a founding member of Savage Baum & Glass. In 2016, Mr. Savage returned to Moyers Martin. He is a member of the Tulsa County, Oklahoma and American bar associations and serves as an adjunct settlement judge for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma.
James M. Tisdal
Mr. Tisdal has practiced law since 1976 and is a shareholder in the firm of Tisdal & O’Hara, PLLC with offices in Clinton and Edmond. He has previously served as vice president of the Oklahoma Bar Association Board of Governors, president of the Oklahoma Bar Foundation, chair of the Oklahoma Bar Association Professional Responsibility Commission and chair of the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission. The Best Lawyers in America named him 2011 Oklahoma Attorney of the Year in Oil & Gas Law and he has received the Oklahoma Bar Association President’s Award and the Neil E. Bogan Professionalism Award. Mr. Tisdal is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, member of the American Bar Association and Oklahoma fellow of the American Bar Foundation.
John H. Wynne
Mr. Wynne has practiced law since 1974 and is a shareholder and a director of the law firm of Traynor, Long, Wynne & Woodward PC in Enid. Mr. Wynne previously served as president of the Garfield County Bar Association and as city chair of Integris Bass Baptist Health Center in Enid.