About Us

We have long been a proud example of The Oklahoma Standard in action. While we were founded in Oklahoma City more than 50 years ago and our headquarters remain here, our reach has extended to all corners of Oklahoma and parts of Arkansas and Texas over time.

Now, we are excited to announce that we are unified under one name and thrilled to call ourselves Our Blood Institute. This evolution allows us to join together all parts of our organization, creating an identity that truly embraces our mission. No matter the location, we provide the donor-to-patient lifeline in our local communities.

Our Blood Institute is the sixth-largest independent blood center in the nation, with 16 donor centers in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas. OBI is the nonprofit blood provider for patients at more than 240 hospitals, medical facilities, and air ambulances across all three states.


Our Blood Institute in Oklahoma: OBI has nine donor centers in Oklahoma and provides more than 90 percent of Oklahoma’s blood supply to more than 160 hospitals, medical facilities, and air ambulances. OBI's donor centers are located in Ada, Ardmore, Central Oklahoma City, Edmond, Enid, Lawton, Norman, Northwest Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

Our Blood Institute in Arkansas: OBI has five donor centers in Arkansas and provides blood products for patients in more than 40 Arkansas hospitals, medical facilities, and air ambulances. OBI's donor centers are located in Ft. Smith, Hot Springs, Little Rock, North Little Rock and Russellville.

Our Blood Institute in Wichita Falls: OBI in Wichita Falls provides blood products for patients in eight hospitals in the Texoma region, including Baylor, Clay, Hardeman, Wichita and Wilbarger counties.

Coffee Memorial Blood Center: Coffee Memorial Blood Center is part of Our Blood Institute and is located in Amarillo, Texas. CMBC provides blood to all major hospitals in the High Plains region.

Leadership

  • John Armitage, MD

    President and CEO

  • Kim van Antwerpen

    Chief Operating Officer

  • Dr. Walter Linz

    Chief Medical Officer

  • Randy Stark

    Chief Financial Officer

  • Justin Redwine

    Chief Technology Officer

  • John Marcellus

    Chief Information Officer

  • Tammy Kirkwood

    Vice President, Donor Recruitment

  • Marlena Frye

    Vice President, Donor Services

  • Laura McClannan

    Vice President, Quality Management

  • Charles Mooney

    Vice President, BioDevelopment

  • Terry Ridenour

    Vice President, Center Administration & Operations

  • Tara Scott

    Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Board of Directors

  • John Armitage, MD

    President & CEO, Our Blood Institute

  • Richard Boatsman, MD

    Chair, Board of Directors

  • David R. Carpenter

    Vice Chair, Board of Directors - President, American Fidelity

  • Frank Barnett, MD

  • Larry Bookman, MD

  • Edgar M. Boyd, MD

    OSMA Pres-Elect (Rotating Member) | Saint Francis Hospital, ENT Surgeon

  • Scott Calhoon, MD

    President, SWC Production Inc.

  • David H. Chansolme, MD

    Infectious Diseases Consultants of OKC

  • Wayne Coldwell

    Deputy Exec Dir., Internal Oper., Cherokee Nation Health Services

  • David A. Flack, MD

    Pathology Associates of North Texas

  • Judy Goforth, PhD, RN

    Chickasaw Nation Health System

  • Jay Allen Gregory, MD

  • Henry J. Hood

    Attorney

  • Joe M. Hodges

    Regional President, SSM Health Oklahoma

  • Randal Carl Juengel, MD

    Department of Pathology, SSM Health St. Anthony Hospital

  • Gary W. Mitchell, D. Ph.

    Chairman – Board of Trustees – NW OBI

  • W.H. (Bud) Oehlert, MD

  • Gary L. Patzkowsky, DO

    Member NW OBI

  • Michelle Powers, MD

    OCMS President (Rotating Member)

  • Craig Sperry

    Valero Energy Corporation

  • Paul Stout, MD

    Arkansas Pathology Associates

  • Kym Koch-Thompson

    Koch Communications

  • Evan Vincent

    Attorney, Crowe & Dunlevy

  • Ted Violett, MD

    Associate Board Member

  • Kristi R. Weaber

    Mayfield Law Firm

  • Garland Wilkinson

    Executive VP/Chief Operating Officer, MidFirst Bank

  • Our History

    Before 1940

    1818 – The first recorded successful human-to-human blood transfusion is performed by British obstetrician Dr. James Blundell, to treat a postpartum hemorrhage.

    1901 – ABO blood types are discovered by biologist Karl Landsteiner.

    • depiction of blood transfusion
  • Our History

    1940s

    Dr. Charles Drew, an African American physician and medical researcher, revolutionizes blood banking by establishing large-scale blood banks, bloodmobiles and plasma processing for the war effort. Drew also fought strenuously against the segregation of blood supplies by race.

    1940 – The Rh blood group is discovered, adding to the blood typing available to develop the system we know today.

    1949 – Our Amarillo blood center is charted as a nonprofit corporation in Texas, under the name Potter County Memorial Blood Center.

    • Dr. Charles Drew
  • Our History

    1950s

    1950 – The plastic blood bag is introduced to transfusion medicine, replacing fragile glass bottles that were used previously.

    • Blood Bag
  • Our History

    1960s

    1965 – The Amarillo blood center is renamed to Coffee Memorial Blood Center, after James Robert Coffee, MD. a promising young physician from Amarillo, Dr. Coffee died just before his 22nd birthday from a hemorrhagic condition.

    • Coffee Memorial Blood Institute History
  • Our History

    1970s

    1976 – Oklahoma Blood Institute is incorporated by the Oklahoma County Medical Society, after local physicians recognize the need to improve the community’s blood-related health care services.

    1977 – We begin operations as a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) blood center, with donation centers in Oklahoma City and Lawton that serve 35 local hospitals.

    • Oklahoma County Medical Society
  • Our History

    1980s

    1981 – We become self-sufficient in blood supply, with local donors able to provide enough blood to keep shelves stocked at member hospitals.

    1989 – OBI is established as the donor center for the National Marrow Donor Program, to help save the lives of patients with life-threatening blood and bone cancers and blood diseases.

  • Our History

    1990s

    1991 – OBI becomes the first blood center in the nation to implement the additional AIDS-screening test for the HIV-1 antigen.

    1995 – We deliver an additional 900 blood products to hospitals before victims arrived from the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. Oklahomans responded by donating to help rebuild the blood supply after the tragedy.

    • Murrah Bombing
  • Our History

    2000s

    2001 – OBI flies blood to New York City to assist with the emergency response to the September 11 attacks, the first blood center in the nation to do so. Nearly 7,500 units of blood were donated in the three days following the attack.

    2004 – The Texas Blood Institute is formed, supplying blood products to eight Texas hospitals in five counties around Wichita Falls.

    2008 – We establish Global Blood Fund, a charitable organization that works to improve the availability and safety of blood in some of the world’s poorest nations.

    • Blood transported to air national guard
  • Our History

    2010 - Present

    2014 – Opened Oklahoma’s first umbilical cord blood bank.

    2015 – We add to our footprint in Arkansas, opening a donor center in Little Rock to better serve Arkansans in the area.

    2016 – Oklahoma Blood Institutes welcomes Coffee Memorial Blood Center in Amarillo into the organization. This blood center, which was established in 1965 and named for a local physician, retains its name and history of serving the High Plains area.

    2020 – We launch convalescent plasma collections to help critically ill COVID-19 patients, collecting more than 20,000 units from local donors.

Research & Innovation

As medicine and the needs of patients evolve, so do we. We advance the science of blood banking by conducting research, developing innovative technology solutions and connecting potential research subjects with studies available in their area.

Learn More

Join Our Team

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