Peer Learning Network

PLN - Peer Learning Network at Zig Ziglar Center, Southern Nazarene University, Bethany Oklahoma

Peer Learning Network 2015-2016

Sam Presti - Oklahoma City Thunder

Sam Presti
Executive Vice President and General Manager of the
Oklahoma City Thunder

February 4, 2016 - Thursday

Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame
11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Sam Presti recently began his ninth season with the Oklahoma City Thunder and his 15th as an NBA executive. After being named Thunder General Manager on June 7, 2007, Presti was promoted to Executive Vice President and General Manager one year into his tenure with the team by Professional Basketball Club Chairman, Clayton Bennett.

During his eight seasons with the Thunder, Presti has worked diligently to assemble the building blocks for long-term success both on and off the court. Dating back to the start of the 2009-10 season, Presti and his staff have watched the Thunder amass the second best record in the NBA (.664; 316-160) during this span (behind only San Antonio).

With Presti at the helm, the Thunder captured four straight Northwest Division Championship before the 2014-15 season and after finishing the 2013-14 campaign with a record of 59-23, the Thunder became one of just two teams to register a winning percentage of .610 (equivalent to 50 wins) in each of the prior five seasons.

Presti’s consistent focus has been to utilize the NBA Draft to establish the foundation for sustained success on the floor and in the community. Commencing with the 2007 draft, Presti selected Kevin Durant, the University of Texas standout with the team’s No. 2 overall pick. At the conclusion of the 2013-14 season, Durant was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player after leading the NBA in scoring for a fourth time in five seasons.

Other significant draft selections for Presti include taking Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka with the 4th and 24th selections, respectively in the 2008 draft. Westbrook has since become a four-time All-Star and this past season he led the NBA in scoring. Meanwhile, Ibaka has gone on to become just the second player in NBA history to lead the NBA in blocked shots for four consecutive seasons (2010-2014). More recently, Steven Adams was named to the BBVA Rising Stars team in each of the past two seasons after being selected by the Thunder with the 12th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft.

After moving to Oklahoma City in July of 2008, Presti has stressed the importance of community involvement for both Thunder players and staff. Under his leadership, Thunder players have made more than 1,700 community appearances in and around Oklahoma City. Presti has also made it policy for every new player and staff member to tour the Oklahoma City Memorial and Museum soon after joining the organization.

Chip Bell - PLN Speaker

Chip R. Bell

April 14, 2016 - Thursday

Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame 

11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.


The Zig Ziglar Center for Ethical Leadership offers a unique program in ethics and leadership for students, business and nonprofit professionals, and government leaders.

The Peer Learning Network program is designed to help individuals acknowledge their capacity to lead, to build upon leadership skills, and to help motivate others to do extraordinary things.

To accomplish these objectives we utilize world-class faculty, university resources, national speakers, and the strategic alignment of the Ziglar Corporation.

These programs help individuals dream of taking the ordinary to the extraordinary through a better sense of self that takes into account the “whole person.” Each program is designed to equip an individual or group to be leaders who achieve the purposes of the organization, all the while recognizing their own personal integrity, vision, and values.

Laura Stack at Peer Learning Network 

Laura Stack speaking at Peer Learning Network

Laura Stack at Peer Learning Network

Zig Ziglar Center for Ethical Leadership at Southern Nazarene University, 6729 NW 39th Expressway, Bethany, OK 73008, Phone: 405-491-6311