ODOT approves $29K raise for director

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Department of Transportation approved a $29,000 raise Monday for its director.

Mike Patterson, who has been with the agency since 1980, serves as agency director and transportation secretary.

His current salary, $156,000, will rise to $185,000 with the raise.

Before the announcement was made, the Transportation Committee discussed his performance and salary in executive session.

“Mr. Patterson has been a vital part of ODOT for many years, and the commission recognizes his professionalism following in the footsteps of transportation icons like Secretary Neal McCaleb and Secretary Gary Ridley,” said David Burrage, chairman of the commission. “Patterson is credited with a smooth transition as executive director and helping make ODOT a model for other state agencies and DOTs across the country.”

According to ODOT spokeswoman Terri Angier, the salary covers Patterson’s work as director and secretary. She told the Tulsa World the agency has about 2,330 employees and a $1.5 billion budget.

The Tulsa World reports Tim Gatz, executive director of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority, a smaller agency, earns $150,000 a year.

Patterson, who has a Bachelor’s degree accounting and a Master’s degree in business administration, became ODOT’s director in 2013. In June 2017, Governor Mary Fallin appointed him Cabinet secretary of transportation. Before that, he was ODOT’s deputy director, chief financial officer and comptroller, reports the Tulsa World.

There is no connection in Patterson’s salary increase to the recent increase in fuel prices for teacher pay raises.