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Chicken-Fried News: 20 more years!



It has been 20 years since David Boren took over as president of the University of Oklahoma (OU).

Really? Time really does fly when you’re having fun. We can’t imagine the university as anything but the center of excellence that it is today, but it wasn’t always that way. Twenty years ago, Boren left his Senate seat with two years left on his term to run the college and was excited to do it. The man has always been a bit of a trailblazer, being the state’s youngest governor who went on to be elected to three terms as a United States senator.

People were more than a little surprised when he left his senatorial seat with two years left. They were also surprised at his choice of jobs, but the state regents asked him to come, and he answered.

According to, Boren said, “I thought, ‘You know, I could do more if I went home.’”

And that’s just what he did. He fled the hopeless gridlock of Capital Hill for the university and traded in the title of senator for president. OU has flourished under his leadership, developing a national and international reputation for excellence and growing fundraising efforts to the tune of almost $1 billion. He was also quick to credit his wife, Molly Shi Boren, for the esthetics of the university, including art, gardens and 20,000 new trees.

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