Stitt ousts longtime Fallin aide from key state office

Daily Oklahoman |

--Denise Northrup, a longtime aide to outgoing Gov. Mary Fallin, has been ousted from her job as director of a key state agency as Gov.-elect Kevin Stitt's incoming administration moves toward control of the executive branch.

Northrup, who served as Fallin's campaign manager and chief of staff, said in a letter to employees at the Office of Management and Enterprise Services that Friday would be her last day. She has been director since late 2017.

"At this time, the new administration has not named a new director, but I trust you will be in capable hands," Northrup said in a letter to employees at the agency, which oversees a wide range of financial and IT matters for state government.

"The incoming director will need your full support to be successful, and I trust that all of you will give your best effort as you have done for me as director."

Stitt is scheduled to be sworn into office on Monday. He is expected to focus heavily in his first months on budget mechanics and transparency, which are functions of OMES.

Donelle Harder, a spokeswoman for Stitt, said Thursday, "This is the natural transition of a new administration, particularly with agencies where the director serves at the pleasure of the governor.

"We are grateful for Ms. Northrup's longstanding, faithful service to her state and for her professionalism in transitioning in the new administration. Our COO is already actively working to ensure a smooth transition with new leadership for OMES."

Stitt this week announced that he intends to hire John Budd, a Sonic Corp. executive, as his chief operating officer. He has tapped former state senator Mike Mazzei as secretary of budget.

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