“It’s Just Hard Work And Perseverance,” Myles Davidson On Working In Politics.
A fair share of former Oklahoma City Community College students has forged paths for themselves after leaving.
Myles Davidson happens to be one of those former OCCC students who has managed to do just that. He is currently running for the Oklahoma County commissioner for District 3.
Davidson said one of the things he did while he was at OCCC was getting his EMT license. He spent some time in the Emergency Management Program. He did this so that he could be a part of the volunteer fire department in Oklahoma City.
Davidson then said he didn’t know if he had a particular major that he was pursuing while going to OCCC, and he went to OCCC off and on for several years.
“I did some Political Science classes. It was really on and off for a while,” Davidson said.
Davidson enjoyed his time at OCCC, despite his sporadic attendance, and he cited one of his political science teachers Dana Glenross. Glenross helped solidify his interest in politics, which was growing while he worked for a Speaker of The House.
Despite not having any family or any other connections in the political field, Davidson ended up getting a job with Senator Jim Inhofe’s campaign.
Despite his doubts, Davidson eventually got the job. He started with picking up and putting out signs for the campaign, worked at grassroots events, became a field representative, and then became a field director, all within that campaign.
“It’s just hard work and perseverance and being willing to put in the long hours and doing the things that were necessary when they needed to be done, and honestly a lot of campaigns and politics are answering the call,” he said.
He also cited a story when he was in third grade, and his grandparents took him on a trip to Washington DC. His grandfather helped raise money for President Ronald Reagan, and there was a big meeting that was happening for the Inauguration.
Davidson said he knew when his grandparents took him to DC that he wanted to be involved in politics when he grew older.
He also recalled when his grandparents had his third-grade class write letters to the President, and he got to deliver those letters to the White House, which sparked his interest in politics.
“The oil bust happened and a lot of things happened and my family wasn’t politically connected or able to donate or do those types of things anymore because the oil bust took out a 50 plus year family business. But I had always kept it in mind that it would be something that I’d love to get into,” Davidson said.
Another influence on Davidson was a newspaper article about the letters he and his classmates sent to the President, which he still has a copy of to this very day.
Davidson said being in politics takes a lot of work and comes with its fair share of challenges, such as having your past opened up to be examined. But he is not worried about having his past opened up for examination.
Davidson is running against three candidates in the Republican primary ballot for the County Commissioner for District 3.
“My campaign has covered about 8,000 doors, I’ve raised about 120,000 dollars, and we’re putting in 80-hour weeks, making sure we’re in every eight suburbs and ribbon cutting and every event we could possibly be at,” Davidson said.
District 3 is Northwest Oklahoma City, such as Deer Creek, Edmond, and Arcadia.
Davidson explained that county governments are a microcosm of state government, such as how state prisons are run by the local Sheriff’s office or how the state’s Supreme Court is helped by the local court systems.
The County Commissioner is also responsible for building roads and bridges along with the Department of Transportation. They also have tax assessors access the value of properties inside Oklahoma county.
The commissioners also work in the Legislative branch such as with the POCC, who make decisions and set forth the rules for the county.
County Commissioners are also responsible for the first responders, such as Emergency Management or when a tornado comes through.
“You start noticing large pieces of equipment, you start noticing how those police cars and fire trucks are getting filled up by tanker trucks, and the flats are getting fixed, and all that stuff is the infrastructure for emergency responders. That’s what County Commissioners are also responsible for,” Davidson said.
Davidson said that it’s been a great time for Oklahoma. On Wednesday, it was announced that Oklahoma City is the 20th city in the country, and the size of Oklahoma City has grown recently.
One of Davidson’s aims is to create a new county jail since the one currently being used has been riddled with issues. He hopes to do this without increasing people’s taxes.
Davidson also hoped to improve Oklahoma County’s bridge infrastructure since a multi-trillion dollar infrastructure bill was signed and put into law, and Oklahoma County is 70 million dollars behind on their bill.
“I recently set forth a plan here in Oklahoma County that laser grades the roads, the county highway system. So instead of making decisions to rebuild roads on political aspects, we’re actually able to scientifically point to where the needed infrastructure dollar is,” Davidson said.
Davidson thinks his bridge-building experience, both literally and figuratively, will help him as County Commissioner. He has also bridged gaps between the federal, municipal, county, and state governments to share funding costs for some of the most significant projects in Oklahoma County.
Davidson also wants to change the Criminal Justice Diversionary Programs, such as SHINE, which Davidson would love to see the Legislature change. He would also like to see changes in the community service program as well.
“My experience in being that bridge builder for everybody is what would make me the best suited commissioner from day one,” he said.
One of Davidson’s biggest challenges was fundraising for his campaign. It was going well for a long time before it picked up. He said that the funds for the campaign rose as summer started.
He also said that it had been a struggle to get his voice out there when there’s so many people already running for office.
Davidson reiterated his hopes to build bridges in county government to get ahead of the 70 million dollar deficit that Oklahoma County is suffering from at the moment.
He also hopes to re-examine how Oklahoma looks at its water supply, as well as hoping to reinvigorate Oklahoma’s prison system and build a new county jail.
“We have to start thinking further down the road,” Davidson said.
The election for the District 3 County Commissioner will be on June 28.