OKLAHOMA CITY – Freedom of Information Oklahoma recently awarded its annual Sunshine Award to House Majority Floor Leader Jon Echols.
The award recognizes a public official or governmental body that has shown a commitment to freedom of information.
Echols, R-Oklahoma City, is not only a leader in the House, but an advocate for transparency in government, according to his nomination letter.
“He is willing and able to work with all sides of an issue to craft laws that live up to the spirit of the Open Meeting and Open Records Act,” the letter said. “He is respected by the Capitol Press Corps as a person that is accessible and gives honest answers to difficult questions.”
Echols said he was honored to receive the award.
“Government transparency is of the utmost importance to me,” he said in a news release. “People in the state and in our nation elect representatives to conduct government business on their behalf. By doing that, they expect that process to be open and transparent and to be given access to all that goes into passing legislation that then becomes the laws that govern them.”
FOI Oklahoma is a statewide organization that supports people and organizations who are working to open records or provide access to illegally closed meetings. The organization’s board of directors includes attorneys, educators, journalists, state and elected officials, librarians and private citizens.