I was assigned by my good client Oklahoma Living to do an environmental portrait of Keith Shadden, the Beaver County Emergency Management Coordinator, as part of a story about “The Helpers” – people who give back to their communities in times of emergencies and disaster. Now if you don’t know, Beaver County is way up in the Oklahoma Panhandle, a LONG ways from Oklahoma City. I didn’t mind however, since I love traveling anywhere in Oklahoma, especially to take a portrait of a cool, interesting person, and Keith certainly fit that description.
I met Keith at his office in the Beaver County Courthouse. Chocked full of technology, Keith monitors a wide range of computer feeds – weather, FBI data, various county sheriff’s and police departments, fire departments throughout the panhandle. His job is to act as coordinator in times of emergency, helping to direct the appropriate resource to the appropriate location and the right time. He is especially busy during winter storms, fires, and tornado season.
After meeting in Keith’s office, we went outside to get some outdoor pictures. I just HAD to shoot in front of the Otasco store logo in downtown Beaver. Anyone remember OTASCO – Oklahoma Tire and Supply? They were a huge chain of hardware stores all across Oklahoma. Now there are two stores left – Beaver and Marlow, Oklahoma.
If you get up to Beaver, stop in and say high to Keith. He is a super nice guy and always willing to brew up a cup of his specialty coffee he imports from around the world.