Eight will be inducted into the Oklahoma Women’s Hall of Fame


OKLAHOMA CITY — Eight women soon to be inducted into the Oklahoma Women’s Hall of Fame have made many valuable contributions to the state. They include medical professionals, a renowned artist, talented business leaders, a farmer-rancher and, perhaps most importantly, advocates determined to improve the lives of others.

The eight will be honored at a ceremony scheduled for April 29 at the Omni Hotel and Resort in Oklahoma City. They will join 134 other women inducted into the Hall since its inception in 1983.

“We are honored to recognize these women with such great honor for the women of our great state,” said Victoria Woods, chairwoman of the Oklahoma Commission on the Status of Women.

The ceremony will also include a presentation of the Guardian Award to an Oklahoma elected official and the Kate Barnard Award to a woman who exemplifies excellence in public service, noted OWHOF President Carol Hefner.

Hefner added that proceeds from the event will be used to establish a permanent Women’s Hall of Fame exhibit.

“It will be a special time to celebrate Oklahomans who are making a difference in the lives of women,” Hefner said of the ceremony.

This year’s OWHOF inductees will include:

· Sue Ann Arnall, energy industry veteran and founder of the Arnall Family Foundation. Arnall focused on child welfare, animal welfare, and criminal justice reform and created the Diversion Hub, a program that helps incarcerated women and men.

· Carleen Burger, a long-time advocate for women, children and youth. Burger lobbied for prenatal checkups and health care for incarcerated women. She has been a generous supporter and advocate for the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics Foundation (OSSM).

· Janice Dobbs, former Corporate Secretary at Chesapeake Energy and Devon Energy. Dobbs played a central role in the transformation of two small local oil and gas companies into international companies recognized as innovative leaders in the exploration of new sources of energy.

· Wanda Jackson, singer, songwriter and two-time Grammy nominee who has released music in rock, country and gospel genres. Her string of 1950s singles cemented her status as “The Queen of Rockabilly”. Counted among country music’s first female stars, Jackson is a decorated artist with a Fellowship Award from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as an inductee into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Oklahoma. . Hall of fame.

· Betty McElderry, who will be inducted posthumously, chaired the Oklahoma Commission on the Status of Women during Governor George Nigh’s administration. She served as director of Girl’s State and was recognized by Campaign and Elections Magazine as one of 74 Outstanding Women Who Helped Change America.

· Roseline Nsikak, world renowned psychotherapist, philanthropist and founder of two mental and behavioral health agencies. Nsikak’s career has been spent treating children, adolescents and adults with mental illness and drug and alcohol addiction. She has also served non-profit and faith-based organizations by developing modules and programs to enable them to meet the needs of the community as a whole.

· Dr. Kayse Shrum, 19th president of Oklahoma State University and first woman to lead the institution. After earning her doctorate in osteopathic medicine from Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Shrum excelled as a faculty member and eventually as president of OSU-CHS, becoming the youngest and first woman president and dean of a state medical school. As Oklahoma’s First Secretary of Science and Innovation, her leadership helped establish Oklahoma’s largest COVID diagnostics lab on OSU’s Stillwater Campus.

· Anna Belle Wiedemann, who has built her life and career promoting Oklahoma agriculture. Beginning as the owner/operator of Slash C Ranch, Wiedemann, along with her husband, helped promote “Made In Oklahoma” food products around the world. She also served as State Representative and County Commissioner, and Director of International Trade and Rural Development at the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture.


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