MESO Board Approves Rider as New General Manager

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Contact Dan Blankenship, MESO President


MESO Board Approves Rider as New General Manager


The Municipal Electric Systems of Oklahoma (MESO) Board of Directors approved the appointment of Tom Rider, as General Manager of the state association. Rider currently serves as the MESO Director of Professional Development and the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Gas Association (OGA).  Both organizations have their headquarters in Oklahoma City.

For the past 25 years, Rider has worked with Oklahoma cities and towns and the non-profit sector.  He has served as a project manager for the Oklahoma Municipal League (OML), program manager for the Oklahoma Municipal Assurance Group (OMAG) and as a human resources consultant.

Rider joined MESO full-time in 2002 and in 2003 took over the responsibility for OGA.  In his role with MESO, he has developed personnel development programs in the areas of communications and public relations and taught conflict resolution and team interaction courses.  He also developed the successful comprehensive, year-long Supervisor Course and Success Skills program to develop supervisory and managerial skills. With OGA, Rider has helped lead the continuing evolution of the association as it works to be an effective resource of the natural gas industry in Oklahoma. 

MESO President Dan Blankenship commented that “We had some very qualified applicants, but the selection committee felt Rider’s background in working with the membership and knowledge of the MESO operations would allow him the ability to begin addressing the association needs quickly and ultimately that is what distinguished him from the other final candidates.  I personally believe that the selection committee did an outstanding job of selecting the best candidate for the job and I am confident that Tom will be able to take the primary leadership role in ensuring that MESO is meeting the needs of our members by providing high quality services in a cost effective manner.  We are all excited about Tom taking over as General Manager and are looking forward to some very positive changes in the immediate future.”

Rider has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science (Law Enforcement Administration) and a master’s degree in Public Administration, both from the University of Oklahoma and lives in Edmond, where his wife, Linda, is chair of the nursing department at the University of Central Oklahoma.  They have three adult children and are the very proud grandparents of a six-month old grandson.

What Is MESO? Municipal Electric Systems of Oklahoma (MESO) is an association of municipally-owned electric utilities that provide electric service to over 400,000 residents. Currently, 63 cities offer retail electric utility services in Oklahoma.  MESO was established in 1971 when representatives from several cities met in Stillwater to establish the organization for the purposes of information sharing and mutual support.

 The Oklahoma Gas Association (OGA) is a non-profit trade association for the natural gas industry. Focusing on industry best practices, regulatory issues, future planning and industry relations, OGA offers a wide array of opportunities for its members.