OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. (Aug. 16, 2022) — Oklahoma City Community College President Dr. Mautra Staley Jones will be one of 11 inducted into the Oklahoma African American Educators Hall of Fame, Inc. (OAAE) next month. She will be a member of the 2022 class of OAAE Hall of Fame inductees.
“This honor is particularly special as I want to live my life as an example to children who grew up like me,” Jones said. “It’s important for children to see themselves in successful adults, otherwise, they have no idea of what is possible. This honor puts my achievements on a larger platform so that more children can see themselves in me, and for that, I am deeply grateful.”
Jones learned the importance of education early on. She was a successful student in elementary and secondary school, and Jones pursued higher education as a first-generation college student at the University of Oklahoma. She later earned an MBA from the University of Phoenix at San Diego and a Doctor of Education from Vanderbilt University’s prestigious Peabody College of Education.
Most of Jones’ career has centered around education. She served as the Director of Development and Marketing at KIPP Reach College Preparatory School and as Director of Development for The Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools.
Jones shifted her talents to Langston University, an 1890 Land-Grant University. She served as the Vice President of Institutional Advancement and External Affairs where she directed fundraising, donor and alumni relations, marketing and public relations, communications, and government and community relations. Additionally, Jones held the role of Executive Director of the Langston University Foundation and Langston University-OKC Campus Site Administrator. She was instrumental in increasing assets and holdings, growing public and private donations as well as managing daily operations on the university’s urban campus.
Jones made history when she was named the 11th president of Oklahoma City Community College on March 1. She is the first woman and first person of color to serve OCCC in this capacity. She is also the first African American female president of any higher education institution in Oklahoma that is not a Historically Black College or University (HBCU).
Her goals for the institution include increasing resources and student enrollment, elevating OCCC’s name recognition statewide and leading OCCC into previously unchartered waters. Under her leadership, the College forgave nearly $4 million in student debt under its Fresh Start Initiative, which impacted 4,500 OCCC students. OCCC was also designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense, was named one of MovieMaker magazine’s 40 Best Film Schools of 2022 in the U.S. and Canada, has partnered with Walgreens for pharmacy internships and was awarded a $1.8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to help high school students become first-generation college students.
Beyond her professional life, she is an active and engaged member of the community, providing leadership to various corporate, civic and charitable organizations. She serves as a Board Director for BancFirst and BancFirst Corporation; South Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce; American Mothers, Inc., Oklahoma Hall of Fame, StitchCrew, Oklahoma Philharmonic Society, Civic Center Foundation, Oklahoma Watch, Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs, and Leadership Oklahoma City’s Alumni Association. She is a board advisor to the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, a Salt and Light Leadership (SALLT) Fellow, a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma City (Class XXIX), a member of the MSI Aspiring Leaders Program at Rutgers University and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Jones has been named Woman of the Year by The Journal Record, Perry Publishing and Broadcasting, and With Love OKC. She also holds the distinction of being named American Mothers, Inc.’s 2021 National Mother of the Year, 2021 Oklahoma Mother of the Year, and 2012 Oklahoma Mother of Achievement. Jones has been honored as an Achiever Under 40 by The Journal Record, OKC Biz and Oklahoma Magazine. Her leadership and contributions to higher education have been featured in Fortune Magazine, Black Enterprise Magazine, American Association of Community Colleges Journal, and Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, among other publications.
She is married to United States District Judge Bernard M. Jones II, and they have three children.
The OAAE Hall of Fame induction ceremony will be Sept. 30 at the Oklahoma History Center. For more information on the ceremony, go to www.oaaehof.org or contact Shirley Nero at (918) 698-6037.