Presented by Richard and Glenna Tanenbaum

Monday, March 28, 2022

Honoree and Sponsor Cocktail Hour 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Award Ceremony and Dinner 7:00-9:00 p.m.

Jones Assembly
901 W Sheridan Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73106

Business casual attire. Valet available.

For the last 9 years, Harding Fine Arts Academy has honored individuals, couples, and organizations for their outstanding contribution to the arts and education in Oklahoma through the Leadership in Arts & Education Awards. This event also helps the Foundation raise mission-critical funds for the Student Success Fund. These unrestricted dollars are used to purchase supplies, equipment, new technology and for preserving our nearly 100-year-old historic building.

For more information or to become a sponsor, please contact Shannon Mckenrick at (405) 702-6939 or lae@hfaafoundation.or


Ken and Mary Ann have collected art all of their married life, starting with posters in college, works on paper when they first got out of college and paintings and pottery at arts festivals. The Fergeson’s credit their big mistake to buying house next door to Ben Pickard. Ben started selling them art on an installment plan and they got to hang it while they paid it off. Ben really helped them develop their love of art and artists.

Ken Fergeson is a community banker and Chairman of NBC Oklahoma. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Bankers Association’s 2018 Inaugural hall of Fame Class and into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2009. He received the Oklahoma Governor’s 1994 and 2000 Arts Awards and most recently selected as a 2019 Oklahoma Creativity Ambassador and recipient of the 2019 Volunteer Service Award from Paseo Arts Association.

Fergeson has served as chairman of both the American Bankers Association as well as the Oklahoma Bankers Association. Ken created the NBC Oklahoma Artist Series, a program that champions Oklahoma artists by commissioning them to create an original piece of art. Ken then turns the art into prints, posters and postcards for bank customers as gifts. Ken has also been responsible for large-scale commissions of public art.

Ken is past-chairman of the Mid-America Arts Alliance Board and Americans for the Arts. In addition, he serves on the boards of the Oklahoma Humanities Council, Oklahoma Arts Institute, the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, Oklahomans for the Arts, the Three Rivers Foundation for the Arts and Sciences, and the Oklahoma State University Postal Plaza Art Museum.

Ken holds a bachelor’s degree in business and a masters in economics from Texas Tech University. Ken and Mary Ann live in Altus, Oklahoma

As Oklahoma’s liberal arts college, the University of Science & Arts of Oklahoma provides a distinctive education in the traditional arts and sciences, one that gives its students a particularly broad base of knowledge through its nationally-renowned interdisciplinary core curriculum allowing the next generation of young people to grow into informed, involved adults. Like the best private liberal arts colleges, Science & Arts offers small class sizes, award-winning faculty, and a campus culture that fosters diversity of thought and practice to help students realize meaningful, purposeful and productive lives as global citizens in a rapidly-changing world.

Focusing solely on undergraduate education in order to ensure these students have their undivided attention, Science & Arts faculty work exceptionally closely with the students both in and outside of their specific fields of study, encouraging them to produce original research suitable for presentation and publication. The university has pioneered its innovative team-teaching approach in its core curriculum, which puts two or more professors from different disciplines into the classroom to offer students differing perspectives and scholarly approaches to the same material. With a 13-to-1 student to faculty ratio, professors at Science & Arts know students by name, encouraging their natural curiosity and nurturing their creativity in all subjects.

The only institution in the state to have their entire campus declared a National Historic District, Science & Arts’ vibrant residential campus provides students with innumerable opportunities to attend cultural events, fine arts performances, scholarly lectures, and to cheer on the Drover Athletics program as they compete in 13 NAIA sports. With this robust educational experience behind them, Science & Arts graduates have a long track-record of success in post-graduate studies and many have gone on to become leaders in their respective fields.

Filling an unduplicated role in Oklahoma’s system of higher education, Science & Arts counters the common narrative that a premium education must also come with a premium price tag. Now well into their second century as a public university, Science & Arts continues to produce not just holders of a baccalaureate degree, but the next generation of thinkers and doers who will go on to prove that an interdisciplinary mindset is absolutely essential for success in the contemporary world.

Jean Hendrickson is a speaker, writer, and advocate for creative, innovative teaching and learning. Director emeritus of Oklahoma A+ Schools at the University of Central Oklahoma, Jean consults with those around the world who share her belief that all children are entitled to a rich, full, educational experience that equips them to take their rightful place in the world. She helps coordinate and support the work of the National A+ Schools Consortium ( that actively guides members of the A+ Schools networks and is a member of the Speakers’ Bureau for Americans for the Arts.

Jean served as executive director for Oklahoma A+ Schools from 2003-2014 and was responsible for overseeing the development of the network across the state, as well as for participating in the larger, national network and international partnerships. With an extensive research base, OKA+ Schools’ model has been cited in such works as Sir Ken Robinson’s latest book, Creative Schools: The Grassroots Revolution That’s Transforming Education, and his book, The Element, the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities’ landmark report Reinvesting in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future Through Creative Schools, on the Arts Education Partnership’s ArtsEdSearch online database, and many others.

Described by Sir Ken as “one of the most impressive people I know in education,” Jean was an elementary principal in Oklahoma City for seventeen years, being named National Distinguished Principal for Oklahoma in 2001. She received the State Superintendent’s Arts Award for Excellence and the 2003 Medal of Excellence in Administration from the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence and the Career Achievement Award through the University of Oklahoma’s College of Education. Her work has been documented in news reports, articles and books, including Elaine K. McEwan’s 10 Traits of Highly Effective Principals. Jean is a featured author in Robert Kelly’s textbooks, Educating for Creativity: A Global Conversation, and Creative Development, as well as contributing to the Arts Education Partnership’s book, Preparing Educators for Arts Integration, and as a guest author for Education Week.

Jean received her Bachelor of Arts in Education from Oklahoma City University, where she graduated summa cum laude and received the “Outstanding Future Teacher” award. She received her Master of Education degree, also summa, from the University of Central Oklahoma. She has served on numerous board and commissions, including as a founding member of Creative Oklahoma, Inc., as a trustee for the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, as an executive board member of Visionary Oklahoma Women, and as a board member for the Harding Fine Arts Academy. She and her husband, Walt reside in Oklahoma City and have two daughters and two granddaughters.

Rand Elliott, FAIA, President of Rand Elliott Architects, has served as principal of his own architectural/interior/graphics design firm since age 27. Since its inception, REA has distinguished itself as a forerunner of innovative architectural design. For Mr. Elliott, architecture is both personal and collective. His strengths are ideas and vision; to act as a mirror for the client to spark inspiration for a project. In doing so, an insightful concept is created from a client’s unique perspective. A successful project is the result of listening well, a poetic expression and impeccable execution.

Projects, process and inspiration have grown from Oklahoma roots and been applied to work in London, as well as over 50 cities in the United States. His dedication to the profession of architecture is displayed at the highest level of design excellence. Since the firm’s opening in 1976, the firm has received 373 international, national, regional and local awards including ten National AIA Honor Awards. His work has been featured in more than 80 books and 350 periodicals published in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Japan, Italy, France, Australia, Hong Kong, China, Turkey, The Netherlands, Portugal and Russia.

The Alpha Rho Chi Medalist at Oklahoma State University in 1973, Rand graduated at the top of his class. Elliott is a member of the prestigious College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects and the American Institute of Architects Committee on Design and Historic Preservation. Other associations include the Architectural League of New York, Dallas Architecture Forum, and the Chinati Foundation in Marfa, Texas. Exhibitions of furniture designs in Los Angeles, New York and Germany, as well as curatorial projects, have created a unique experience level as exhibitor, curator, architectural and exhibit designer.

In Oklahoma, Rand acted as president of the Central Oklahoma Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (1990-91) and served as the Chapter’s Program Chairman from 1995 to 2002. In 2002 Rand became the first Oklahoman invited to participate in the prestigious Bruce Goff Fellowship lecture series at the University of Oklahoma. Rand was awarded the AIA Central Oklahoma Chapter William Wayne Caudill Award in 2005, which recognizes an individual member who has displayed a long-standing commitment to the betterment of the architectural profession. In 2009 Rand was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award from OKC Beautiful, and the Arts Council of Oklahoma recognized Rand with the Business in the Arts Award as part of the annual Governor’s Arts Awards program. In 2010, Rand and the firm were announced as the overall winner of the “Innovator of the Year” competition from the Journal Record business publication for the Turbinomics concept. The Innovator of the Year celebrates business innovation by honoring Oklahomans who exhibit a pioneering spirit and improve the quality of life in our community.

On the national level, Rand was inducted into the 22nd Hall of Fame for Interior Design Magazine in November 2006. The Hall of Fame recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to the growth and prominence of the design field. Rand was recognized in 2010 with the Distinguished Alumni Award from his alma mater, Oklahoma State University.

DeVante M. Parker was born at Tinker Air Force Base (AFB), Oklahoma. He lived in the Dallas area for a few years, but then returned to Oklahoma City. DeVante graduated from Harding Fine Arts Academy in 2011. He attended Southern Nazarene University with an athletic scholarship for two years and transferred Bryan University where he attained his BS in Exercise Science. DeVante actually began his career in personal training at the age of 2, but in December of 2020, he started his first personal training company, Fit Now Systems.

In 2017, DeVante became an Advanced Personal Trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) and American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).

Looking to become more active in his community, DeVante enjoys volunteering his time at the annual Festival of the Arts and coaching youth sports at the East Side YMCA. Recently, he has dedicated his energies to re-establishing the Harding Alumni Association for which he serves as the President of the Board of Directors.

DeVante considers himself a “Jack of all trades” – often taking on new challenges and learning new skills. He enjoys helping others and learning about stocks, forex, and currency exchanges. In his free time, he enjoys working out in the gym, and playing basketball, soccer, and videogames.

Event Sponsors

Thank you to our generous sponsors!

Presenting Sponsor

Richard and Glenna Tanenbaum

Event Sponsor

Jean & Walt Hendrickson
Kirkpatrick Family Fund
NBC Oklahoma
Gabriel & Christa Pitman
Smith & Pickel Construction Inc

Table Sponsor

Anonymous in memory of John L. Belt
Rand & Jeanette Elliott
Carol McPheeters ’63
Brooke & Mike Murphy
The Payne Family in honor of Ken Fergeson
John Yoeckel

Associate Sponsors

Joy Reed Belt
Sally Bentley
Annie Bohanon
Randy & Melinda Compton
Joan Frates
Susan & Jay Gabbard
GrantThornton LLP
Mary Ellen Gumerson in Memory of Bill Gumerson ’63

Kirkpatrick Bank
Orthodontic Arts
The Pitman Family
Sherry Rowan
Doug & Susie Stussi
Visionary Oklahoma Women
Chuck & Renate Wiggin
Bronda & Tyson Williams

Valet Sponsor

Senior Helpers

Décor Sponsor

Calvert’s Plant Interiors

Sponsorship opportunities are available. All funds raised will benefit Harding Fine Arts Academy Foundation. For more information or to be invoiced, please contact Shannon Mckenrick at (405) 702-6939.

LAE Event Planning Committee

The Leadership in Arts & Education Awards would not be possible without the help of our amazing and dedicated event committee!


  • Christa and Gabriel Pitman
  • Bronda and Tyson Williams


  • Kaye Adams
  • Cynthia Archianaco
  • Laura Beck
  • Sally Bentley
  • Randy and Melinda Compton
  • Dee Harris
  • Rindy Hyde
  • Beth Kelly
  • Carol McPheeters
  • Alison Taylor

2020 Virtual Leadership in Arts & Education