40 Under 40


Joe Abshere, 33


Vice President, Wayne’s Drive Inn
After graduating from Oklahoma State University in 2003, Abshere tried living outside of Oklahoma, but after only a year, he knew his heart belonged here. He returned to Lawton to join his family’s business, and two years later, he was named vice president of operations and helped open a second location of Lawton’s famous drive-in. In addition to running a business, Abshere is a member of the Oklahoma Restaurant Association, sits on the Leadership Lawton/Ft. Sill Board of Directors and the Comanche County Memorial Foundation Board. His goals for the future are to sustain his family business that has operated since 1950 while finding avenues to grow the business and have more locations in the future. “I would tell someone who is trying to achieve success that it is not always about who is the most talented, but if you work hard and never give up you can achieve anything in life and in business,” he says.


Jeromee Scot, 30


Executive Producer, 6 in the Morning
Scot begins most mornings before any of us have even thought of getting out of bed. As the executive producer for 6 in the Morning, he is in charge of producing KOTV’s morning programming, and his good work has been noticed. He’s been nominated twice for Emmy awards and, this year, 6 in the Morning was awarded the Best Morning Show from the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters. He has enjoyed producing three Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure specials as part of KOTV and has volunteered for the annual race. He also volunteers at events for the Tulsa City-County Library and the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center.


Cassie Niemann, 34


Supervisor, Employee Performance, Chesapeake Energy
Niemann leads the employee performance team within the talent management group at Chesapeake. She manages the company’s performance management program, including identifying the professional development needs of the company’s employees. Her first job was a hospital volunteer; Neimann says it’s where she learned the importance of serving others. She hopes to one day lead a human resources department and spend her retirement years “rocking babies in the NICU or PICU at Children’s Hospital.” She relishes spending time with her family and loves enjoying amenities that city living offers: Eating out, going to events and cheering on Oklahoma City’s sports teams.


Shubham Pant, M.D., 39

Oklahoma City

Hematology-Oncology Physician, Associate Director of Oklahoma TSET Phase I Program, Stephenson Cancer Center at the University of Oklahoma
As an associate director of clinical trials at the Stephenson Cancer Center, Pant is involved in drug development for clinical trials. “I absolutely love what I do,” he says. “Cancer patients are very special, and I learn something new every day. They are in a very tough point in their life, and they make us realize that our problems are very small compared to what they are going through. They serve as a constant source of inspiration, and they are a driver for what I do everyday in clinical trials, research and patient care.” Pant is also an advocate for cancer prevention and healthy living. He is the host of educational radio shows, such as Your Health Matters, in the state, and he sometimes contributes to Huffington Post India and has appeared on Living It Up, which airs on the India affiliate of CNN.


Chris Shilling, 28

Oklahoma City

Director of Marketing and Operations, Stephenson Cancer Center; COO of Appable, Inc.
A first-generation college student, Shilling made his family proud by graduating from the University of Oklahoma and later from Harvard Business School with his MBA. At Oklahoma’s only academic cancer center, it is Shilling’s job to tell the story of the Stephenson Cancer Center outside of the building. “I want to let people know regardless of income, geography or status that cancer is a tremendous struggle,” he says. “At the Stephenson Cancer Center we have built a world-class team to treat the whole person.” In his free time, Shilling works with Appable to build mobile apps for Oklahoma nonprofits. He also enjoys running and traveling with his wife.