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Meet the Board Members
Section 2-7-101 of title 10A of the Oklahoma Statutes authorizes the Board of Juvenile Affairs (Board) as the governing body for The Office of Juvenile Affairs (OJA). The Board consists of nine members, five members appointed by the Governor, two members appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and two members appointed by the Speaker of the House; all members serve at the pleasure of the appointing authority.
The Board meets monthly in a manner consistent with the Oklahoma Open Meeting Act, see see 25 O.S. § 301 et seq. The Board of Juvenile Affairs was created February 1, 1995.
The Board of sets broad policy for and is the rule-making body for OJA. The board is responsible for reviewing and approving the budget, assisting the agency in planning activities related to the priorities and policies of the agency, providing a public forum for receiving comments and disseminating information to the public, and establishing contracting procedures for the agency and guidelines for rates of payment for services provided by contract.
- Karen Youngblood - Chair
- Dr. Stephen Grissom
- Mautra Jones
- Sean Burrage
- Honorable Janet Foss
- Jenna Worthen
- Dr. Amy Emerson
- Timothy Tardibono
- Sidney Ellington
Karen Youngblood, of Oklahoma City, chief leaning officer at One Agents Alliance (OAA) specializing in organization development and educational leadership and former executive director of customized education at the University of Central Oklahoma. Appointed by Governor Kevin Stitt.
Dr. Stephen Grissom
Dr. Stephen Grissom, of Tulsa, psychologist and colleague instructor, and former chief psychologist at the L.E Rader Center and former chief psychologist at the Office of Juvenile Affairs. Appointed by Governor Kevin Stitt.
Mautra S. Jones
Mautra S. Jones, of Oklahoma City, vice president for institutional advancement and external affairs at Langston University and executive director of the Langston University Foundation. Appointed by Governor Kevin Stitt.
Sean Burrage, of Norman, vice president for executive affairs at the University of Oklahoma, former president of Southeastern Oklahoma State University and former state senator. Appointed by House Speaker Charles McCall.
Honorable Janet Foss
Honorable Janet Foss, of Norman, retired special district judge for Cleveland County, and has worked with juveniles in many capacities during her career, including as a social worker, assistant district attorney and juvenile judge. Appointed by Governor Kevin Stitt.
Jenna Worthen, of Oklahoma City, chief executive officer of James Martin Company, and has spent more than a decade crafting strategic communications and implementing development strategy for Oklahoma-based nonprofits and candidates for public office as well as having extensive experience in community-partner development for the benefit of youth in Oklahoma state custody. Appointed by House Speaker Charles McCall.
Dr. Amy Emerson
Dr. Amy Emerson, of Tulsa, has worked with the families of Tulsa Educare since 2008 where she oversees community outreach programs, and serves as medical consultant for several early learning centers in Tulsa, and is actively involved in advocacy work to support children living in foster care. Appointed by Governor Kevin Stitt.
Timothy Tardibono, of Bethany, executive director of the Oklahoma County Criminal Justice Advisory Council and served as counsel to former U.S. Senator Tom Coburn and as assistant general counsel at the Oklahoma Department of Health. Appointed by Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat.
Sidney Ellington, of Oklahoma City, a retired Navy SEAL officer, has over a decade of experience in the field of education, most of which has been spent working with underserved youth. In 2010 he joined Teach for America (TFA) and spent the next four years working in K-12 education in the city of New Orleans during the height of the education reform movement. His TFA assignment was at an alternative charter school for underserved students that had been disengaged from education. After spending three years at the school level, he took a position in 2013 as a Program Manager for the Louisiana Department of Education’s Recovery School District. For the next 12 months, Dr. Ellington worked to spearhead the Superintendent’s Truancy Improvement Initiative, the result of which laid the groundwork for the city’s current Youth Opportunity Center. In 2014 he accepted a role with TFA’s National Staff in Washington, DC, where he served as the Director of TFA’s Veteran Initiative. In 2015 he took the helm of the Warrior-Scholar Project, which helps enlisted service members—most of whom are first generation college students—transition from the military to higher education. In 2018 he and his wife Toni returned to their home state of Oklahoma. Dr. Ellington holds a Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma and currently serves as the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Red Cross’ Central/Southwest Chapter, an area that encompasses 13 counties. In 2016, Dr. Ellington was selected as the recipient of the highly prestigious American Legion’s National Education Award. Previous winners of this award include Fred Rogers, Barbara Bush, Tom Brokaw, Laura Bush, and Bob Keeshan. Dr. Ellington was appointed to the OJA Board of Directors by Senate Pro-Tempore Greg Treat.