Mark Williams joined the Research Institute for Economic Development as President in August 2017 after a 36-year career in the Oklahoma City business community. Mark joined Southwestern Bell Telephone Company, now AT&T, in June 1981 as an Account Executive, and in 1991 became Senior Design Consultant. In 1998, he was named Sales Manager, followed in 2002 as Area Manager – Sales Planning. In 2006, he became Area Manager – External Affairs, and in 2010 was named Director – Legislative Affairs where he led the AT&T Oklahoma external affairs team on legislative matters at the state Capitol through the 2017 legislative session.
Mark is very involved in the Oklahoma City area community. He presently serves as Chairman of the Board of the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits and Chair-Elect of the Oklahoma City All Sports Association. He is the past board chairman of the American Red Cross of Central Oklahoma, the Northwest Chamber of Commerce and the Oklahoma Baptist University Alumni Association. He has, or is currently serving on the boards of the First Tee, Leadership Oklahoma, Youth Leadership Exchange, Sooner State Games and the Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City, where he is also a Life Member.
He was honored by Leadership Oklahoma with the Helping Oklahoma award for his leadership of the Red Cross of Central and Western Oklahoma following the devastating tornadoes that struck Oklahoma in the spring of 2013. In 2017, he was the recipient of the March of Dimes Sports Headliner Lifetime Achievement award for his work with the NCAA Women’s College World Series.
Mark is a native Oklahoman, and received a B.A. in Economics from Oklahoma Baptist University and a J.D. from Oklahoma City University. He is married to Carol Cathey Williams, and they have two daughters and five grandchildren.