Today Oklahoma CareerTech State Director Brent Haken begins official duties.
Haken was named to the position in November by the Oklahoma State Board of Career and Technology Education. He is the ninth director in ODCTE’s history.
“I am honored to begin serving the state of Oklahoma in meeting the educational, training and workforce development needs of our state,” Haken said. “Oklahoma has the nation’s premier system for career and technical education due to a foundation laid by passionate and dedicated Oklahomans,” Haken said in a press release.
“As an educator and a product of the Oklahoma CareerTech System, I understand the opportunity we have in unlocking the state’s potential for meeting the workforce needs of Oklahoma businesses and providing pathways to rewarding careers for Oklahoma students. Empowering people through education moves Oklahoma forward.”
Lee Denney, who has been serving as the CareerTech interim state director since February 2022, will remain at Oklahoma CareerTech as interim chief of staff.
“Brent Haken is a leader with vision and innovative ideas,” Denney said. “He will be able to lead Oklahoma CareerTech forward as we continue to provide skilled workers for Oklahoma industries.”
Haken comes to Oklahoma CareerTech from Morrison Public Schools, where he served as superintendent since 2019.
He began his educational career teaching agricultural education in Wellston and Stillwater before moving to Morrison, where he became elementary assistant principal and special education director in July 2015 and high school principal in July 2016. He also served as testing coordinator.
Haken received the 2022 Superintendents Chairman’s Award from the Oklahoma Youth Expo and was the Oklahoma Association of Superintendents District 4 Superintendent of the Year for 2022. He is a member of the Oklahoma State Professional Education Council and the Cooperative Council for Secondary Administrators.
He has been a member of the Oklahoma Career Technology Master Teacher Committee, the National Association of Agricultural Educators and the Association of Career Technical Educators and served on the board and as vice president of the Oklahoma Agricultural Education Teachers Association.
Haken earned a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Central Oklahoma and a bachelor’s degree in agricultural education from Oklahoma State University.
About Oklahoma CareerTech
The Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education provides leadership and resources and assures standards of excellence for a comprehensive statewide system of career and technology education. The system offers programs and services in 29 technology center districts operating on 60 campuses, 391 PK-12 school districts, 15 Skills Centers campuses that include three juvenile facilities and 32 adult education and family literacy providers.
The agency is governed by the State Board of Career and Technology Education and works closely with the State Department of Education and the State Regents for Higher Education to provide a seamless educational system for all Oklahomans.