April 6, 2012

Chuck Utsler will seek Richardson's seat in House

— Local farmer and Pocasset native, Chuck Utsler today announced his candidacy for State House District 56, to fill the seat being vacated by retiring Rep. Phil Richardson.

“For years, I’ve been preaching that Christians need to be in government and helping direct our laws. I did not expect to walk that path myself, however,” Utsler said. “I believe this is an opportunity God has been preparing me to accept, and now I must step out on faith.”

Utsler, who grew up in Pocasset and graduated from Amber-Pocasset schools in 1973, h                                              as served as senior pastor of three churches in Oklahoma, including First Baptist Church of Pocasset.

Since 2003, he has served as the Director of Missions at Grady Baptist Association of Churches, which supports 30 congregations within the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.

“I have decades of experience developing and implementing programs, working with all kinds of people, resolving conflict and generating support for ideas,” Utsler said. “My experience easily translates to the work of a legislator, who is tasked with listening to constituents, examining the issues and advancing ideas.”

Utsler said he is a conservative, and aims to continue the work done by retiring legislator Phil Richardson.

“Rep. Richardson has accomplished so much for our area. I am honored to have his support, and I pray that I can continue his legacy of solid conservative leadership,” Utsler said.

In addition to his ministry job, Utsler raises wheat, alfalfa and milo on his family’s farm. He is the third generation in his family to farm the same land, and he lives in the home in which he was raised.

“Like Phil, I will work hard to support our agricultural economy, strengthen our schools, protect our seniors and preserve traditional values. I’m proud to be an Oklahoman, and I want to do everything I can to keep Oklahoma on track for the sake of the next generation,” he said.

Utsler and his wife, Donnia, have been married 36 years. She is a retired public school teacher and works as a Ministry Assistant alongside her husband. The couple has two children and four grandchildren.

 Utsler attended the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma in Chickasha, graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, and holds a Master’s Degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.