Newell delivered his resignation letter to Gov. Mary Fallin showing an effective date of Dec. 31, 2016. Fallin will call for a special election within 30 days to fill the seat for Oklahoma House District 28, which covers Seminole County and the northern portion of Pottawatomie County in east central Oklahoma.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the people of House District 28,” said Newell, R-Seminole. “I will be pursuing an opportunity in the private sector that will allow me to spend more time with my family, while allowing me to serve families nationwide.
“I appreciate the trust people in District 28 placed in me. I’m thankful for the friendships I’ve made with all of my colleagues in the Legislature. I know the state is capable hands with the new House members and Speaker-elect Charles McCall.”
Newell, a pastor, was first elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives in 2011. During the 2016 legislative session he served as chair of the Government Oversight and Accountability Committee. He also served on the Business, Labor & Retirement Laws Committee, the Children, Youth & Family Services Committee, and on the Revenue & Taxation Appropriations Subcommittee.
Newell was born in Bristow, OK, and was a state champion bull rider and state champion extemporaneous speaker in the FFA. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Mid-America Christian University in Oklahoma City and his master’s degree in business administration from Liberty University. He pastored churches in Oklahoma, Missouri, and Pennsylvania, and taught business and economics classes at Seminole State College.
He has three sons and one grandson: Ethan, Andrew, Levi, and Easton.