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Oklahoma Israel Exchange (OKIE) honors Dick Sias and his wife Jeannette

Dick & Jeannette Sias
Dick & Jeannette Sias

Staff Report

The OKlahoma Israel Exchange (OKIE) will bestow its 2014 Light, Leadership and Legacy Award on local businessman and philanthropist Dick Sias and his wife, Jeannette, of blessed memory, on Thursday, October 30, 6:30 p.m., at the Skirvin Hilton Hotel in downtown Olahoma City.

The Siases join other distinguished members of the Oklahoma community — Melvin Moran, Betty Price, Ann Hargis, and Chickasaw Governor Bill Anoatubby — in receiving this honor given to individuals who have demonstrated unwavering support of OKIE’s many ongoing projects and programs between Oklahoma and Israel. Oklahoma City University President Robert Henry will present the award. Erielle Reshef, morning anchor for KOCO, will emcee the evening. Israeli OCU/HED graduate student Or Kribos will provide a musical interlude.

Dick and Jeannette are well known for their passion for the state, as well as their willingness to support local non-profits. As part-owners and founders of Joullian Vineyards of Carmel, California, the Siases have generously provided Joullian wine to grace the dinner tables at countless galas of organizations and non-profits for many years.

OKIE, a beneficiary of the Siases’ generosity, will honor Dick and his late wife, Jeannette, for their work in promoting ongoing relationships between Oklahoma and Israel in the areas of culture, education, agriculture and commerce.

Dick began his career as an Oklahoma oilman. In 1960 he married Jeannette Joullian, thus beginning their relationship of 54 years. Their love of the arts prompted Dick to serve as president of the Oklahoma Symphony Orchestra in 1978 during a critical time when the orchestra faced closure. Their generosity and persuasion caused others to follow their lead, breathing new life into the organization and paving the way for the Oklahoma City Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2013, Jeannette received the Marilyn Douglas Award from the Oklahoma Arts Council and Dick was named “OKCityan of the Year.”

Dick still serves on various boards of universities and organizations, continuing his lasting legacy in Oklahoma.

Honorary Chairs Ben and Shirley Shanker — and co-chairs Herman and LaDonna Meinders and Dick and Glenna Tanenbaum — will “uncork” a special, high-energy evening in tribute to this extraordinary couple. For information, call 405-848-3132 or email to [email protected]

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