This week’s death of Edmond Mayor Charles Lamb left more than an empty seat at Edmond City Hall. It left leaders of the Oklahoma Municipal Power Authority also in mourning.
The 72-year old Lamb was Chairman of the Board at the Authority. He was also the longest-tenured board member, according to an announcement by the Authority. He served on the Authority since 1993 and was the OMPA’s Board Chairman since 2001.
It was just last year that Lamb received the Spence Vanderlinden Public Official award at the American Public Power Association’s national conference held in Orlando, Florida. The award recognizes elected and appointed local officials who have contributed to the goals of the American Public Power Association.
The Authority, made up of 42 municipal power systems, indicated Lamb was a longtime advocate for the OMPA and public power in the state.
He was instrumental in the innovation and development of OMPA’s Competitive Utility Program (CUP). CUP, started in 1995, is a voluntary program that provides OMPA members with a way to evaluate and improve the operation of their electric utilities, and make them better able to compete in the electric utility industry.
“OMPA and Public Power in Oklahoma has lost a true champion. As Chair, Charles always promoted fairness, transparency, and collaboration. He believed that OMPA’s true value came from serving all members equally and that OMPA was only as strong as the weakest link. His leadership and friendship will be greatly missed,” OMPA General Manager David Osburn.
In his past roles as Chairman of OMPA, Charles served on the American Public Power Association (APPA) Policy Makers Committee, where he advocated for public power rights and issues on a national level. In 2017, Charles received the Spence Vanderlinden Public Official Award, which recognizes elected or appointed local officials who have contributed to the goals of APPA and public power.
In 2006, Charles was inducted into the Oklahoma Municipal League’s Hall of Fame for Town and City Officials. Created in 1999, the Oklahoma Hall of Fame for City and Town Officials Foundation annually recognizes up to six individuals for outstanding achievement in the field of city and town management.
In 2013, Charles became the first ever two-time recipient of the Municipal of Electric Systems of Oklahoma’s (MESO) Ray Duffy Personal Service Award, honoring his efforts to lead Oklahoma’s efforts in promoting the value public power brings to individual communities.
On July 12, 2012, the OMPA Board of Directors unanimously voted to approve designating the name sake of OMPA’s 103-megawatt natural gas generation plant in Kay County the Charles D. Lamb Energy Center. The plant was formally dedicated in 2015 in front of a large crowd with public comments from U.S. Representative Frank Lucas and Oklahoma Secretary of Energy & Environment Michael Teague.
Services will be held at 1:30 p.m., Monday, December 17, 2018 at the New Covenant United Methodist Church in Edmond, OK.