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Chancellor Allison D. Garrett is the chief executive officer for the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education. Garrett leads a state system comprised of 25 state colleges and universities, 11 constituent agencies, one university center, and independent colleges and universities coordinated with the state system. She reports to a constitutional board whose nine members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate.

Garrett provides leadership on matters relating to standards for Oklahoma higher education, courses and programs of study, budget allocations for institutions, fees and tuition, and strategic planning. She is responsible for an annual higher education budget in excess of $2.8 billion as well as the state endowment fund, with a market value over $931.5 million. As Chancellor, she leads OneNet, which is Oklahoma’s most advanced technology network designed to provide the infrastructure to support high-speed broadband services, as well as the Oklahoma College Assistance Program, which guaranteed since inception approximately $8.1 billion in insured student loans and services the remaining outstanding student loan debt of over $1.0 billion.

Garrett directs 20 statewide scholarship programs including the Oklahoma's Promise Scholarship program and statewide GEAR UP efforts.

Chancellor Allison D. Garrett took office as chancellor of the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education on Nov. 8, 2021. She is the first woman to hold the position of Chancellor.


Garrett has a wealth of experience in both higher education and the corporate sector. Prior to her role as Chancellor, she served as the 17th president of Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas. During her tenure, ESU developed momentum in several key areas, including completion of its largest capital campaign; transformation of the campus with new building projects; record-setting increases in student retention and graduation; and development of new academic programs to address the needs of state and regional business and industry. As ESU president, she served as vice chair of the NCAA Board of Governors and as chair of the NCAA Division II Presidents’ Council.

Prior to serving as president of ESU, Garrett served as executive vice president of Abilene Christian University, senior vice president for academic affairs at Oklahoma Christian University, and as an associate professor of law at Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama.

Garrett also worked for more than a decade at the Walmart Inc. corporate offices, holding the positions of vice president and general counsel for the corporate division and vice president of benefits compliance and planning. Upon graduation from law school, she went into private practice before taking a position with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

A native of Neosho, Missouri, Garrett holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Oklahoma Christian University, a juris doctorate from The University of Tulsa College of Law and a Master of Laws in securities regulation from Georgetown University.

Garrett and her husband live in Edmond, Oklahoma. They have three adult children and one grandchild.

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