By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK — The Oklahoma AIDS Care Fund (OACF) will host the 27th “Red Tie Night” on Saturday, March 9, 2019 at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. The gala will begin with cocktails at 6 p.m., followed by dinner, a silent and live auction, and dancing.
Live entertainment will be provided by the Jordan Kahn Orchestra, from Dallas, TX. Chairing the event this year are Wendy and Ethan House. Wendy has served as a member of the Board of Directors for the Oklahoma AIDS Care Fund since 2017 and is Vice President of the Fred Jones Family Foundation. Ethan is the Vice President of Business Development for the Mid-Continent Region at EnergyNet.
“We are thrilled to have the leadership of Wendy and Ethan House this year,” said Paula Love, OACF Board President. “New HIV transmissions and AIDS-related deaths are on the rise in Oklahoma. Now more than ever, we need our community to support Red Tie Night and help us end the epidemic.”
The first planning meeting was held in the home of Roxanne and Ryan McDonald to discuss this year’s gala details and goals for the 2019 committee.
Attendees included OACF Board Members Paula Love, Frederick Redwine, Phil Burke, Adam Edwards, Sean Olmstead, Robbie Powell, Tim Rasmussen, and Jake Yunker; Red Tie Chairs Wendy and Ethan House; Red Tie Night Committee Members Natausha Spears, Josh Spears, Denise Greenfield, and Roxanne McDonald; and OACF staff Cher Golding, Jaykob Janes and David White. Other guests included Justin Edwards, Robert Mills, Phil and Sarah Redwine, and Ryan McDonald.
Proceeds from Red Tie Night will benefit the Oklahoma AIDS Care Fund, which provides support, education, advocacy and resources to end the HIV and AIDS epidemic.
David Chansolme, M.D. was honored with this year’s prestigious OACF Richard May Award at their inaugural World AIDS Day Luncheon held last November at Will Rogers Theatre in Oklahoma City.
Chansolme is board certified in internal medicine and infectious diseases. In private practice since 2004, Chansolme serves on a number of boards in the Oklahoma City area and has held several officer positions at OACF, including the role of President from 2014-2016.
“We were deeply honored to present this year’s Richard May Award to Dr. Chansolme,” said Paula Love, OACF President. “Dr. Chansolme has not only provided treatment and care to many individuals living with HIV or AIDS, he also has tirelessly given his time, leadership and resources to support the work of the Oklahoma AIDS Care Fund and Red Tie Night.
“We are in a time where specialists like Dr. Chansolme, who do so much more than treat their patients, are needed,” Love said. “Their impact will help us end the epidemic here in Oklahoma.”
The Richard May Award is presented each year in recognition of an individual who gives their time and talents to promote HIV/AIDS research or services in Oklahoma. The award was established to honor Richard May, a founder of the OACF who passed away in March 2000. The recipients exemplify strength and compassion, never seeking recognition, which was the spirit of Richard May.
Since its founding in 1991, OACF has distributed more than $12.5 million in funding and resources in the HIV/AIDS community in Oklahoma.
Current Red Tie Night sponsors are Chickasaw Nation, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma, Cresap Family Foundation, Inasmuch Foundation, National Auto Care Corp., and the Switzer Family Vineyards.
Individual Gala tickets are $500. Sponsorships and tables for Red Tie Night ranging from $1,000 – $50,000 can be purchased online or by calling 405-348-6600.
To learn more about the Oklahoma AIDS Care Fund and Red Tie Night, visit okaidscarefund.com.