The Norman Transcript

October 29, 2012

Two vie for House District 20

By Joy Hampton
The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — The competition for Oklahoma House District 20 has been steep, with four candidates in the Republican Primary and two in the Democratic Primary battling it out for the seat to be vacated by Rep. Paul Roan, D-Tishomingo, who term-limited out.

In the primary, Republican Bobby Cleveland, of Slaughterville, defeated three candidates from Newcastle — Gil Hensley, Paul Maus and Alon Morrison.

Democrat Matt Branstetter, of Noble, triumphed over Rodney Johnson, also of Noble.

Cleveland currently is serving his second term as Cleveland County GOP chair. He served as a delegate for the presidential electoral college in 2008 and is well-known throughout the county as the Slaughterville mayor.

Active in civic affairs within the community, Branstetter served as president of the Noble Chamber of Commerce in 2004 and remains an active and involved member. 

Oklahoma state representatives must be 21 years of age at the time of their election. During their terms of office, legislators must reside and be eligible to vote in their legislative districts.

Democrat Matt Branstetter: Branstetter wants to take common sense and Main Street values to the Oklahoma House. His office is on Main Street in Noble.

Branstetter has worked in the investment business for more than 20 years, owning a successful small business for more than a decade.

He believes in fiscal responsibility and practices what he preaches, advising clients on how to wisely spend and invest hard earned dollars. Branstetter believes government should spend tax dollars the same way, making the most of every dollar. Branstetter said he will fight to protect small businesses and create jobs.

Branstetter has a Bachelor of Business Administration, a Bachelor of Arts in political science and a minor in congressional studies, all from the University of Oklahoma. He has been married to Tracy Nadeau since May 1979. They have three children: Kyla, Erik and Bonnie.

Both Tracy and Matt Branstetter are involved in booster organizations for Noble Schools and University of Oklahoma athletics. He feels strongly about giving back to his community and setting a good example for his children.

Branstetter started in the investment advisory business in July 1991. He became an independent registered representative in January 1992. In 1998, he received the designation of Registered Financial Consultant from the International Association of Registered Financial Consultants.

In 2000, he opened his independent firm in Noble, BraeVest Investment Advisory Services. On Nov. 15, 2010, he joined Concorde Investment Services LLC, located in Troy, Mich.

In September 2008, he earned the Distinguished Toastmaster, the highest designation awarded by Toastmasters International.

Currently, he is involved in several civic and community associations, including the following: Toastmasters; past president of the Noble Public School Foundation for Academic Excellence; former commissioner of the Slaughterville Planning and Zoning Commission; member of the Noble Chamber of Commerce from 2000 to present; 2004 president of the Noble Chamber of Commerce; executive board member of the Noble Chamber of Commerce from 2002 to 2008; Noble Chamber of Commerce Rose Rock Parade chairman; and president of the Board of Trustees for the Mocella Homeowners Association.

Republican Bobby Cleveland: Cleveland grew up in south Oklahoma City. He and wife, Barbara, graduated from Capitol Hill High School. Bobby and Barbara have lived in Slaughterville for the past 42 years.

Married for 50 years, they have two sons, Rob and wife Jill and Rod and wife Christine, and eight grandchildren. Bobby and Rod also own the PostNet business at 1108 W. Main St. in Norman.

Cleveland serves on the ACOG board, which oversees a budget of $18 million. Previously, he served on the Lexington School Board. Today, he serves as Slaughterville mayor and was named Oklahoma’s Small Town Mayor of the Year for 2012. In spite of the loss of his home due to fire, Cleveland continued his responsibilities as mayor without interruption.

In 2010, Cleveland was inducted into the Capitol Hill High School’s Hall of Fame, receiving the “Life Time Achievement” award.

As an Oklahoma businessman and entrepreneur for more than 30 years, Cleveland is committed to bringing his business experience in meeting payroll, risking capital and making tough decisions to the State House. He started his first business a few years after graduation. After some early struggles, he began working with a company in Northwest Arkansas, Wal-Mart, that was just gaining steam.

Over the next 30 years, Cleveland built his business, manufacturing different products for Wal-Mart, Academy and other retailers. His companies have sold everything from Bible covers to refurbished golf balls and sports equipment. As an inventor, Bobby holds two patents and at least 10 trademarks. His new venture is Sooner Relief, a fast-acting pain reliever in gel form.

Cleveland has served as a Court Appointed Special Advocate. CASA helps kids from abusive families as they go through the court system.

The Clevelands currently attend Bethel Baptist Church in Norman. Previously, the Clevelands attended Lexington First Baptist Church, where he served as a Sunday school teacher and youth RA leader for many years.

Joy Hampton366-3539jhampton@normantranscript.com

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