Eastern’s 10th Annual Sapphire Ball scholarship fundraiser set for April 6


WILBURTON, OK (March 1, 2019) – Eastern Oklahoma State College will host its 10th annual Sapphire Ball on Saturday, April 6 in the Tourtellotte Student Center Ballroom in Wilburton. The annual black-tie event honors supporters of the college while raising funds for student scholarships.

In addition to the annual awards presentations for outstanding alumni, community supporters and employees, the event will feature dinner, silent and live auctions, and entertainment. The evening will begin with a reception at 6 p.m., followed by dinner at 7 p.m. The annual black-tie event is Eastern’s largest scholarship fundraiser with 100 percent of the event’s proceeds benefiting the Sapphire Scholarship Fund.

Four individuals and one organization that have been instrumental to the success of the college will be honored during the event.

David Perryman of Chickasha, OK and Brooklin Matthews Green of Wilmington, NC will receive the Distinguished Alumnus Award, presented annually to alumni who have distinguished themselves professionally and through service to the college.

A Kinta High School graduate, Perryman earned a pre-medicine degree from Eastern in 1977. He then earned a bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University and a juris doctorate from the University of Oklahoma College of Law. Perryman has been a partner in the Frailey, Chaffin, Cordell, Perryman, Sterkel and McCalla law firm in Chickasha since 1987. During his law practice, he has represented corporations, small businesses, medical facilities, rural water districts, cities, towns, public trust authorities and non-profit entities. In 2013, Perryman began serving in the Oklahoma House of Representatives for District 56. He is currently the Minority Floor Leader and serves on the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee, Banking, Financial Services and Pensions Committee, County and Municipal Government Committee, and Judiciary Committee.

Green is a keynote comedian and speaker, voice artist and professor. A native of Checotah, Green graduated from Eastern in 1996 with a degree in speech and drama. She earned a bachelor’s degree in theatre and a master’s degree in communications and leadership from Gonzaga University. A graduate of the world-famous Second City Conservatory in Chicago, Green has appeared on the A&E Television Network’s “The Laugh Track” documentary and Nick at Nite’s “The Funniest Mom in America 3.” She has been a guest artist with the Education Theatre Association in Texas and Missouri, the North Carolina Thespian Festival and the International Thespian Festival for the past seven years. Green also writes radio and television advertising spots for Sunrise Broadcast while also teaching at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and the University of Mount Olive. She regularly performs as a stand-up comedian and improviser around the United States, participating in events such as the Improv Olympics, Chicago’s Improv Festival and the Funny Women Festival.

The Community State Bank will receive the Community Spirit Award for outstanding support and service to Eastern and the local community. In the fall of 2017, The Community State Bank opened a branch location in Wilburton and has been an active community partner with Eastern and other organizations during the past two years. The Community State Bank and the Bob Reed Family Trust of Poteau have partnered with Eastern’s Agriculture Division to purchase three sets of stocker cattle for use in the college’s ranch management degree program. Students take responsibility for the day-to-day management of the stocker herd, including feeding and maintaining the health of the cattle, before selling them to a commercial feedlot. After the initial investments were recovered, the nearly $70,000 in proceeds were donated to the EOSC Foundation to support the Agriculture Division. In addition, The Community State Bank became the lead sponsor in the 2019 Eastern Oklahoma Regional Science and Engineering Fair. The annual event is for math and sciences students in grades six through 12 and encourages students to learn the scientific method, conduct original scientific research and report their experimental results. The Community State Bank has also supported Eastern’s scholarship initiatives and student activities.

The President’s Excellence in Teaching Award will be presented to Dr. Patricia Bolin Ratliff of Poteau. She has served as a professor of biology, physiology and zoology at Eastern since 2008 and was named as the dean of the Science and Mathematics Division this year. She has served on numerous steering and planning committees for accreditation, financial aid, curriculum and academic policy. Prior to joining Eastern, Ratliff served as a registered nurse at hospitals in Oklahoma City and Minneapolis for 17 years. She also served as a pest management coordinator and specialist for Michigan State University and Oklahoma State University before beginning her teaching career. Ratliff earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Oklahoma Baptist University and a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Central Oklahoma, as well as a master’s degree and doctoral degree in entomology from the University of Minnesota. Ratliff has been active in several community organizations, including the Western Arkansas Eastern Oklahoma Beekeepers Association, the Cavanal Chorale and Latimer County Arts Council.

The J.C. Hunt Award for staff excellence will be presented to George Larson of McAlester. Larson began his career at Eastern in 2006. He initially served as a website designer and computer technician for Eastern’s GEAR UP grant program, a federally-funded initiative to increase the number of low income students who enter and successfully transition into post-secondary education. In 2015, Larson transitioned to a programmer and analyst position with Eastern’s Computer Services department, designing and developing custom websites and software applications for the institution. He also taught HTML to high school students participating in the Choctaw Nation’s Upward Bound math and science summer program, as well as computer programming courses as adjunct instructor at Eastern. Larson previously served as a software engineer and programmer for Advantage Route Systems in Turlock, CA for seven years. He has earned two associate degrees from Eastern in computer information systems and math. He also earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science with a minor in management information systems from East Central University.

Tickets for the Sapphire Ball are $60 each, and corporate and table sponsorships are also available. Visit eosc.edu/sapphireball for information regarding tickets and sponsorships.

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