Governor David Walters, a Business and Public Policy Enthusiast
David Walters is the founder and Chairman of Walters Power International, a global leader in supplying, developing, servicing, and managing electrical generation power plants. Formed in 1995, WPI and its affiliated companies have combined the expertise of independent power professionals with the resources of individual and institutional investment funds to develop and supply more than $2 billion in power projects in more than 20 countries.
WPI’s broad experience includes the development of multiple floating power barge projects in the Caribbean; a 50 MW baseload bio-mass energy project and two 40 MW gas-fired peaking plants in California; 130 MW of distributed gas and diesel fired generating projects, in eleven separate locations, to support the national grid in the United Kingdom; and in Pakistan, three base-load gas fired generating projects and a Liquefied Natural Gas import terminal for which WPI gained a funding commitment from the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation. WPI developed with a German based development company and a Native American tribal entity a 200 MW wind project and has consulted on a number of hydroelectric and run of the river projects. WPI is active in the distributed generation/capacity reserve market in Texas constructing, owning and operating a power plant. WPI has also provided support for low-cost carbon capture process for coal fired plants and has previously worked on advanced emissions catalyst systems.
WPI, through the affiliate Walters Power Africa, is active on several power plant developments working with an established West African/London based company, Genesis Energy Limited. WPI is managing the Operations and Maintenance of an 84 MW gas turbine plant supporting Nigeria’s largest refinery in Port Harcourt. Walters has recently been active in Benin, Nigeria, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa.
Walters is an engineering graduate of the University of Oklahoma and earned an MBA from Harvard Business School. After serving the university as an Executive Officer and a few years in business, Walters entered politics and was elected the 24th Governor of Oklahoma at age 39.
As Governor, he presided over a $7 billion state government employing 135,000 people and aggressively promoted economic development, achieving a 15-year record in job growth. He successfully opposed all tax increases and directed a 30% increase in education funding by reallocating budget dollars. Walters passed the first capital improvements bond issue in Oklahoma in 25 years, investing over $350 million dollars in the State's Higher Education facilities. He advanced the first workers compensation insurance reform in 15 years, causing substantial rate reductions. Governor Walters led trade delegations to eight nations during his term. Oklahoma's international trade grew at twice the national average during his term in office.
Walters has made over 300 international trips to 32 countries, traveling over 4,000,000 miles. Walters work in South Asia has been noted by the national press. In 2010 his work in Pakistan was featured in Forbes Magazine and the September 2011 issue of Vanity Fair identified Walters as a back-channel negotiator communicating in 1999, two years prior to 9/11, between the U.S. Government and the Taliban in an effort to get Afghanistan to expel Osama Bin Laden.
He has been frequently recognized for his political, business, community and philanthropic leadership by numerous state and national organizations, and currently serves as President of the Oklahoma City Rotary Club, the third largest Rotary Club in the world and oldest civic organization in Oklahoma. He remains active in the Democratic Party as elected DNC National Committeeman representing Oklahoma and the Executive Committee a group of 50 people who provide guidance to the National Party Chair and officers to oversee party policies.