Keating accepts job with Washington, D.C., trade group


Monday, April 15th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6



OKLAHOMA CITY _ Gov. Frank Keating said Monday he has accepted an offer to become the president and CEO of a Washington, D.C., trade association after his second term ends in January.

As president of the American Council of Life Insurers, Keating said he will be a national spokesman for the life insurance industry. ACLI represents nearly 400 life insurance companies in the United States.

``This is a tremendous and exciting career opportunity for me and my family,'' Keating said. ``I look forward to the challenge this new job will offer me but Oklahoma will always be our home and Cathy and I look forward to the day we can return.''

Keating, the first Republican governor of Oklahoma to succeed himself, said he looks forward to serving out the remaining nine months of his final term.

``I have unfinished business, especially in the area of tax reform and education reform,'' Keating said. ``I made it very clear to the ACLI board from the start that I intended to serve out my term. The organization graciously agreed to that.''

Keating, 58, succeeds former South Carolina governor and U.S. Rep. Carroll Campbell, who served seven years as president of ACLI.

ACLI Chairman Joe Gasper described Keating as a strong leader who has experience in state and federal government as well as executive management.

``And he is comfortable and skillful at working with both sides of the political aisle,'' Gasper said. ``So we are excited that Governor Keating will be leading ACLI and the life insurance industry during a time of rapid change in the financial services marketplace.''

Keating said he is particularly excited about the organization's focus on helping Americans plan for and achieve financial and retirement security.

Keating said he sees his new duties ``as an extension of my career in public service.''

``The life insurance industry not only helps working Americans achieve financial security through products that allow them to accumulate, manage and protect assets,'' Keating said.

``It is also a $3 trillion industry that contributes significantly to the strength of the American economy.''

Keating, who held positions in the administrations of presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush, said he has instructed the governor's legal staff to watch carefully for legislation that might pose a conflict of interest.

``I will go above and beyond to avoid any appearance of a conflict and will ask the lieutenant governor to act on any bills which might pose such a conflict,'' Keating said.