People & Places: Community Food Bank to honor Gov. Fallin at Hunger's Hero Awards

October 18, 2012

The Tulsa World

By Danna Sue Walker

Gov. Mary Fallin is receiving some applause for her role in establishing the statewide Feeding Oklahoma Food and Fund Drive.

The Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma and WPX Energy will honor Fallin at the Hunger's Hero Awards Luncheon on Oct. 25 at the Doubletree Hotel Downtown.

Fallin will receive the Sara J. Waggoner Hunger Awareness Award, named for the food bank's longtime executive director who retired last year after leading the organization for 20 years. It recognizes an individual or organization for actions and efforts that not only bring attention to the daily lives of those struggling with hunger, but also make us more aware of those who do not know if they will have food to eat from one meal to the next and the significant impact that has on our communities.

The fund drive, now in its third year, meets a huge need. More than 660,000 Oklahomans - including 1 in 4 children - face hunger every day. The monthlong drive ends Nov. 15

Last year the campaign raised more than $227,000, collected more than 552,400 pounds of food and provided more than 1.6 million meals to Oklahomans who were struggling with hunger.

At the luncheon, Fallin will announce a Food Bank Partner Program to receive the Anne and Henry Zarrow Family Foundation scholarship award, which donates $1,000 to be used as a credit on the partner's account.

Mayor Dewey Bartlett will introduce Fallin, and Channel 6's Terry Hood will be the emcee. Victoria Bartlett, a longtime supporter of the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma, will be a special guest.

Last year's food drive exceeded the goal of raising food and funds to provide 1 million meals for hungry Oklahoma families during the holiday season. The 2011 food drive more than doubled the 700,000 meals provided during its inaugural year in 2010.

At the luncheon, members from the Porter FFA and representatives from the Oklahoma Pork Council and Blue and Gold Sausage Company will present a $2,000 donation of breakfast sausage to Fallin in honor of this year's Feeding Oklahoma Food and Fund Drive.

High school students from the Porter FFA recently raised $1,000 through a series of events to benefit the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma. The Oklahoma Pork Council matched the students' contribution, raising the donation to more than 1,500 pounds of breakfast sausage for this year's drive.

WPX Energy is the presenting sponsor of the awards luncheon.

Other major sponsors include Optimus Industries, IBM and Williams Cos., who are 25,000 Meal Sponsors, as well as the University of Tulsa Collins College of Business, Schnake Turnbo Frank PR, Ackerman McQueen, Legacy Air and Omni Air, who are 12,500 Meal Sponsors.

Event sponsorships range from $2,500 to $15,000. Tables of 10 cost $500, and individual tickets are $50. Limited seating is available.

For tickets or sponsorship information for the Hunger's Hero Awards Luncheon, call Amy Cannon at 918-936-4514 or email [email protected]