Leadership Oklahoma Honors Four State Leaders

GALA RECIPIENTS: The 2011 Gala Recipients, from left, are, front row, Ann Ackerman, John D. Groendyke, Barry Layne Switzer and Leslie Paris. Back row are Greg Hodgen, Randy Foutch and Bert Mitchell.

Leadership Oklahoma honored four state leaders at its annual Excellence in Leadership Gala at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.

“Each year we are privileged to recognize the individuals and organizations that make a meaningful difference in Oklahoma,” said Ann Ackerman, Ph.D., chief executive officer of Leadership Oklahoma. “We honor them for elevating quality of life and empowering our state for greater prosperity.”

Barry Layne Switzer, legendary coach, philanthropist and volunteer received the Lifetime Achievement Award for using his leadership abilities to improve the quality of life for Oklahoma’s citizens and for dedicating countless hours to Oklahoma’s Special Olympics.

Randy A. Foutch, chairman, and president of Laredo Petroleum, Inc. in Tulsa, was awarded the Distinguished Graduate Award, which honors a Leadership Oklahoma graduate whose recent leadership activities have exemplified the highest standards of Leadership Oklahoma and whose activities achieved results or set an example of statewide significance. Randy’s leadership in this State’s Energy Industry has promoted Oklahoma throughout the country and the need for the United States to be energy independent.

Groendyke Transport of Enid received the Business Leadership Award, which commends a business entity for its impact in promoting leadership principles and practice, implementing programs worthy of example, and fostering the growth of quality leadership.

Groendyke Transport has a long tradition of being a responsible, highly engaged corporate citizen, a commitment that is deeply embedded in the company’s culture. John D. Groendyke, chairman of the board and and Greg R. Hodgen, president and accepted the award.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma was awarded the Statewide Community Award, which acknowledges an organization or company that, through specific projects or efforts, has reached across valued differences to develop among Oklahomans a sense of common purpose and a more profound sense of loyalty to their state. This award has been created to promote a heightened sense of appreciation for the possibilities available when Oklahomans work together as a single statewide community. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma works to improve the health of communities statewide through efforts in engaging public health programs and private business. Bert Marshall, president, accepted the award.
The Excellence in Leadership Gala was co-chaired by Darcey and Joe Moran of Tulsa.

Leadership Oklahoma is a statewide organization with over 1,100 graduates whose mission is to create and support a dynamic network of leaders whose increased awareness and commitment to service will energize Oklahomans to shape the Oklahoma’s future. For more information, visit www.leadershipoklahoma.com.

Updated 02-21-2011

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