Ben Sherrer for Oklahoma State Representative - HOME Ben Sherrer

» Ben Sherrer Background and Introduction

    When Ben Sherrer was a young boy, his family would jump in the car and head south to Pushmataha County where they would spend holidays surrounded by the fanfare involved with his uncle's campaign for the Oklahoma House of Representatives. Amidst the patriotic music and red, white and blue streamers, the thought of public service struck a strong chord with the young Sherrer and helped him realize he has the heart of a public servant.

    Now 35 years old and a successful attorney, Sherrer wants to parlay that experience into a campaign of his own to replace District 8 representative Larry Rice. "They're some big shoes to fill," said Sherrer, who is opening his campaign this week for the open seat. "Rep. Rice has done an excellent job of representing Mayes and Rogers counties at the state capitol and I'd like the opportunity to continue his good work and service to the district.

    A native of Rogers County, Sherrer grew up in the Tiawah area on the family farm, where he spent summers helping his father run limousin cattle and raise chester white hogs - something they still enjoy doing together today with their cattle project. As a student, Sherrer was active in the Future Farmers of America program at Inola High, even earning the prestigious American Farmer degree awarded to the top one percent of members. It was during those years of raising livestock that Sherrer developed a work ethic that he says has paid off many times over his adult life.

    While attending Oklahoma State University, the former All-District linebacker walked on to Coach Pat Jones' football team, earning a spot on the squad in the infamous 0-10-1 season - an experience Sherrer said taught him the importance of humility. "It was an experience I'll never forget," he said. "Of course, I don't think anyone else will forget it either. It was a great lesson in not quitting even when times are rough."

    After finishing his undergraduate degree at OSU and working for two years, he enrolled in law school at Oklahoma City University, attending classes at night while he worked days as a staff auditor at the state capitol for the Oklahoma State Auditor and Inspector's office. While working at the capitol, Sherrer got to witness first-hand the importance of constituent involvement when thousands of Oklahoma teachers picketed the legislature to approve House Bill 1017. "It was one of the most exciting things I've ever seen," he said. "Watching people get that involved with something they believe in is quite a rush."

    Finishing in the top third of his class in law school, he was scanning the help wanted ads in the Oklahoma Bar Journal when he answered a "blind ad" from a practicing attorney in northeast Oklahoma. "You can't believe how excited I was when I found out it was in Pryor, not far from where I grew up," he said. Having lived in Oklahoma City long enough to get to know several "big city, tall building" lawyers, Sherrer said he was anxious to get back to rural Oklahoma and was thrilled when Pryor attorney Randy Elliott offered him a job. Since then he has become an active member of the community, serving Pryor and Chouteau as city attorney and volunteering his time to serve on the five-member Mayes County Public Facilities Authority, which is overseeing the construction of the new Mayes County Courthouse. He also is a member of the Pryor Rotary Club.

    In 1999, he became a partner with Elliott. Sherrer lives in a recently-remodeled Victorian home in Chouteau with his wife, Margo, a Certified Public Accountant whom he met while at Oklahoma State, and their two sons, four-year-old Bennett and 22-month-old Samuel. An active member of the First Baptist Church of Inola, Sherrer still has strong ties to Rogers County, where his parents still live.

    If elected, Sherrer said his rural background, coupled with his experience working with both the business community and local governments, will provide him with the necessary ties it's going to take to get things done at the state capitol. "I'm not just looking for a job," he said. "I'm perfectly happy doing what I'm doing now. The idea of being able to carry on a tradition of quality representation for Mayes and Rogers counties is a big deal to me. It's something I take very seriously."

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