A replaced Oklahoma health commissioner will earn $205,000 a year at the University of Oklahoma, where classes began this week.

The OU Board of Regents formally hired Gary Cox last month as a professor of health administration and policy and as a clinical professor of family and preventive medicine.

His base salary of $175,000 includes a $30,000 administrative supplement for serving as the associate dean of public health practice and community partnerships

Courses at the OU Health Sciences Center in Oklahoma City began Monday. Cox’s salary is approved through June 30, 2021.

Gov. Kevin Stitt appointed Cox in September as the interim head of the Oklahoma State Department of Health.

Cox, 73, directed the agency through the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, but in May the state Senate declined to confirm him to the position permanently because he fell short of the required qualifications. Stitt appointed Col. Lance Frye, a doctor and the State Air Surgeon for the Oklahoma National Guard, to replace Cox.

OU announced June 29 it appointed Cox to its Hudson College of Public Health, where he previously taught for 17 years as a visiting associate professor.

“We are delighted he has chosen to join our college to bring his extensive experience for the benefit (of) our students, and to strengthen our partnerships with governmental public health and private community partners,” Hudson college dean Gary Raskob said in a statement announcing Cox’s hiring.


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