Afton’s Lewandowski is new GRDA Chair

Sep 14, 2020

GRDA Chair Mike Lewandowski.

Mike Lewandowski (Afton), a 30-plus year owner-operator of McDonald’s restaurants in Northeast Oklahoma, will serve as chairman of the Grand River Dam Authority Board of Directors during the next 12 months.

Originally appointed to the GRDA Board in August 2018 by then-Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, Lewandowski began his tenure as chairman during the board’s September 9 meeting in Tulsa. He succeeds outgoing chairman Jim Richie (Tulsa).

Dwayne Elam, Wagoner City Administrator, will serve as chair-elect for the next year.

Lewandowski earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Wildlife Management from Southwest Missouri State University. He started working for the McDonald’s Corp. in 1980 as a supervisor for a licensee. In 1986, he and his wife, Julie, became owner-operators of a McDonald’s. They owned and operated a McDonald’s restaurant for 31 years, selling the family business in July 2017.

“Mike Lewandowski’s extensive business experience and knowledge of GRDA has served our organization well since he joined the board in 2018,” said GRDA Chief Executive Officer Dan Sullivan. “I am excited about the expertise and background that he brings to our board during his year as our chairman.”

Elam joined the GRDA Board in January 2018 and represents the Authority’s municipal

GRDA Chair-Elect Dwayne Elam.

customers, as the designee for the Oklahoma Municipal Alliance. An Oklahoma native, he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Science from Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, and holds four Class A licenses from the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality.

GRDA is governed by a seven-member board of directors comprised of representatives from each GRDA customer class (municipals, electric cooperatives and industrials) as well as the GRDA lakes area. Two at-large representatives also sit on the board. Board members serve staggered, five-year terms, with one position opening each year, to ensure continuity.