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Congressman Tom Cole

Representing the 4th District of Oklahoma

Science and Technology

The health and longevity of the Oklahoma economy depends in large part on the acceleration of scientific and technological innovations. Maintaining Oklahoma’s leadership in these fields requires a concerted effort to ensure ongoing investments in technology, education and scientific investigations.  

In Oklahoma, we are all too aware of the tangible impact our environment can have on our lives, making the study of weather patterns of great importance to our safety. The Fourth District of Oklahoma is the proud home to the National Weather Center, a massive research center that provides facts and predictions regarding the weather and information on emergency preparedness. Not only does the center provide lifesaving resources to Oklahomans, but it also benefits our state’s economy and workforce as a major employer to our district for scientists, researchers and meteorologists from around the world.

Health research is a growing and key economic force in Oklahoma. The state’s bioscience community includes business and research endeavors that support more than 51,000 Oklahoma jobs and have contributed more than $6.7 billion to the state and yielded over $4.1 billion in annual revenues. Included in the bioscience sector are studies in applied science, medical devices, pharmaceuticals and agriculture feedstock and chemicals. 

Plant research has enormous potential to improve nutrition, health and even commercial applications that impact plant productivity and seed management. The high-tech development of new products and services will improve the agriculture industry for Oklahoma and play a key role in ensuring that the rapidly growing population of the world continues to have a sufficient supply of high quality food, drug therapies and alternative sources for fuels well into the 21st century.

I am also supportive of grant programs geared towards the skills students learn by studying science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). There are dozens of federal grant programs that provide support for high-quality learning opportunities in STEM subjects. In particular, Oklahoma has successfully used federal dollars to bring high-quality STEM content and experiences to students from low-income, high-need schools. I believe such training will inspire these students to become leaders who can solve the most pressing challenges facing Oklahoma and the nation at large.

More on Science and Technology

January 4, 2016 News Stories

The Oklahoman - Stephen Prescott, M.D. 

For the sake of Oklahoma's energy sector, let's hope the New Year brings a bump in oil and gas prices. But even if that doesn't happen, there are still plenty of economic silver linings to be found in the state.

In particular, the ongoing development of the bioscience sector has helped diversify our state's — and particular Oklahoma City's — economy. For 2016, here are five bioscience success stories that should just keep getting better.

Making cancer history

October 13, 2015 Cole On Congress

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) recently filmed the latest episode of his television and web show, Cole on Congress. This month’s program featured an interview with Lt. General Thomas Stafford—a former U.S. Air Force officer, test pilot and notable NASA Astronaut from Weatherford. Stafford’s decorated career includes more than 507 hours logged in space and six rendezvous missions. 

June 21, 2015 News Stories

Norman Transcript - Staff Reports

The House Labor Health and Human Services (HHS) Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Tom Cole recently proposed a $300 million increase for Alzheimer’s research, as requested by Alzheimer’s Association advocates. This is a significant milestone toward reaching the levels deemed necessary by scientists to realize the goal of the National Plan to Address Alzheimer’s Disease — to prevent and effectively treat Alzheimer’s by 2025.

June 4, 2015 Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) listed the University of Oklahoma in Norman as an award recipient of NASA’s Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) to help further the agency’s mission.
June 3, 2015 Press Release
Washington, DC – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04), a member of the House Committee on Appropriations, released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2578, the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies (CJS) Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2016. The legislation addresses federal programs and areas of government related to law enforcement, national security, scientific research and space exploration.
April 23, 2015 Press Release
Washington, DC – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation this week to help protect against cyber threats. The Protecting Cyber Networks Act (H.R. 1560) and National Cybersecurity Protection Advancement Act (H.R. 1731) recommend and clarify appropriate ways for private companies to help the nation combat cyber threats.
May 21, 2014 News Stories

Norman Transcript - Joy Hampton

One year after an EF-5 tornado devastated a core area of Moore that included the Moore Medical Center, the community gathered on the site of the former hospital to reflect and remember those who were lost.

However, the Moore Community Remembrance Ceremony was not all tears and sorrow. It also was a day of celebration, survival and new beginnings.

“Our weather is tough, but our people are tougher,” Moore Economic Development Director Diedre Ebrey said.

May 19, 2014 Weekly Columns

As we look back on the tornadoes that devastated Oklahoma last May, we still mourn the precious lives taken, neighborhoods destroyed and communities shaken. Despite a heartbreaking tragedy, especially for those living in my hometown of Moore, Oklahomans proved their resilience and the rest of the nation supported us every step of the way. 

A year later, our state is stronger and recovery continues to look better each day, but this would not be possible without those who navigated the tragedy, responding immediately and with great urgency during the critical first hours. 

May 5, 2014 Weekly Columns

The majority of Americans look at Washington with great frustration because they feel like Congress isn’t being productive or doing anything of real value. Despite this declining confidence in the lawmaking process, it’s important to realize that there have been several substantive bills that have become law and still other pieces of legislation that patiently await the action by the Senate and President Obama.