This is Oklahoma
This isThe Chalkboard with Joshua Ozaras

This isThe Chalkboard with Joshua Ozaras

August 10, 2020

On this episode I sat with owner operator Joshua Ozaras of the Chalkboard Restaurant in Tulsa. The Chalkboard sits in the basement of the historic Ambassador Hotel in Tulsa. The hotel and the restaurant have a rich history which Joshua dives into today. But also this story is a story of family business. Joshua and his sister Shannon. They were exposed to the restaurant business at a very early age. 

Literally growing up in the hospitality business, their father, Ayhan Ozaras from Istanbul, Turkey owned restaurants since the 70’s.  Both Josh and Shannon officially started working in the food and beverage industry in their late teens and performed virtually every restaurant job imaginable – from dishwasher and busboy to server, bartender and manager. 

At the beginning of 2012, Josh and Shannon’s father retired from the restaurant business where they had the opportunity to buy The Chalkboard and carry on the family business.  By taking ownership of the restaurant, they have honed the traditions and skills with a renewed sense of life and style.

For dinner I had the  Chalkboard Burger. There's a lot of tasty sounding meals on the menu but after a miserable day on the golf course the only thing I wanted was a big burger and it did not disappoint! 

Then to finish off the night I had some ice-cream and OH MY LAWD. I LOVE anything caramel, and I mean LOVE. So the Pralines & Cream (Vanilla Ice Cream, Candied Pecans, House Caramel, Caramel Oat Dust) just hit the spot. As a kid my granddad used to give me caramel werthers sweets. This dessert reminded me of that experience and tasted amazing! Thank you Chalkboard for the awesome experience and bringing a wonderful memory to me. 

Follow them on Instagram @thechalkboardtulsa 

www.chalkboardtulsa.com

This is deVine Water

This is deVine Water

August 7, 2020

This week I drove 2 hours from my home in Yukon all the way to Jet Oklahoma. The reason, to interview Max McDermott and Alsyon Penco of DeVine Water company. What a great experience, right close to the Salt Plains up there are these natural wells and the water is fantastic. 

Growing up nearby Max and many others would stop off at the well on their travels and some specially drive a ways to drink the water and fill up jugs to take home. DeVine water is natural artesian water all the way from the Rockies n Colorado. "deVine water owes its origin to the last Great Ice Age 15,000 years ago when clear, pure, pristine glacier waters flowed from Colorado ice fields through northern Oklahoma and southern Arkansas. The glacier waters were naturally trapped underground in natures purest groundwater reservoir-natural sandstone- where it is enhance with healthy minerals stored by nature".

If you know about this well you already know the story. But if you don't, Max bought the land in 2003 after the previous owner had passed. After purchasing the land they found a few more wells on the property and began the process of extracting and bottling it up to sell. Over years the business has grown and you can now buy their water is grocery stories as well of larger bottles for office supplies etc. 

Max's daughter Alyson came home from New York to help start the business and has been involved in the process from 2003.

The well is free to visit and fill up as much water as you want. 

GO VISIT! 

 

www.devinewater.com

 

This podcast is made possible by the Made in Oklahoma Program. Created for Oklahoma’s entrepreneurs, their free-to-join program focuses on economic growth and development for small businesses who grow, process or manufacture a good within Oklahoma. Retail stores who sell Made in Oklahoma products can also benefit from being in their program. Above all, they encourage you to support and shop local whenever possible. Find them on Facebook or visit their website at www.madeinoklahoma.net to learn more.

 

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This is Secretary Blayne Arthur - Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, & Forestry

This is Secretary Blayne Arthur - Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, & Forestry

August 5, 2020

On this episode I sat with Sec Blayne Arthur to talk all things Oklahoma Ag! Growing up in an agricultural family, studying in Stillwater and being the first women to hold the position. Awesome time with Sec Arthur and one you'll enjoy hearing. 

BIO

On January 14, 2019, Blayne Arthur was sworn in by Governor Kevin Stitt as the Oklahoma Secretary of Agriculture—the state’s first female to hold the position. She acts as Governor Stitt’s chief advisor on policy development and implementation related to agriculture, food and forestry, and holds the titles of Oklahoma Commissioner of Agriculture and the President of the Oklahoma State Board of Agriculture.

Secretary Arthur grew up in Chickasha, Oklahoma, where her family raised horses, shorthorn cattle, wheat, alfalfa and soybeans. Upon graduating from Oklahoma State University in 2004, with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics, Sec. Arthur took a role in small-business financing for Rural Enterprises, Inc. In 2009, the then-Secretary of Agriculture, Terry Peach hired her as the department’s social media coordinator. When Secretary Jim Reese was elected in 2011, he offered her the position as the Deputy Commissioner of Agriculture, where she stayed from 2011 to 2016. In 2016, she served as the Executive Director for the Oklahoma 4-H Foundation until her appointment by Governor Stitt.

She is the 2016 Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association Distinguished Service Award Recipient; remains active in Oklahoma Farm Bureau, Diamond Hats, American Quarter Horse Association, Oklahoma Beef Council, and Ponies of the Americas; and selected for multiple honors including Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program Class XV, a Journal Record 2011 Achievers Under 40 honoree, and the 2014 Oklahoma Agricultural Woman of the Year.

Secretary Arthur married Jerrod Arthur in 2006 and they have two children, Kelton and Kennedy, who both enjoy showing cattle and horses. The Arthur family lives east of Stillwater and raise show cattle for 4-H and FFA members.

 

This podcast is presented by the Oklahoma Hall of Fame. Telling Oklahoma's Story Through Its People Since 1927. Follow them online www.oklahomahof.com and on social media @oklahomahof 

 

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This is Hot Dogs For The Homeless with Aimee Majoue

This is Hot Dogs For The Homeless with Aimee Majoue

August 3, 2020

On this episode I talk with OKC Attorney Aimee Majoue. Aimee moved here from California for a completely fresh start 12 years ago. She is now a local attorney and volunteer and works with Hotdogs for the Homeless. She is on the board at City Rescue Mission and is working to establish OKC's first homeless court in conjunction with the city's municipal court. 

 

Aimee has a fascinating story, moving here with little direction in life. Changing majors from engineering to ministry and then to teaching here in OKC, leading here into the roll she plays today which is an attorney. Awesome story and she's doing wonderful things through her volunteer efforts. 

 

For more information click here: http://hotdogsforthehomeless.com

 

#thisisoklahoma

This is The Ambassador Hotel Tulsa

This is The Ambassador Hotel Tulsa

July 31, 2020

On this episode we dive into the rich history behind the Ambassador Hotel in Tulsa. A small boutique hotel with some great stories along the years. I sat down with hotel matter Nora Miller to learn all about the hotels personality and little quirks. 

 

General Patrick Hurley opened the Ambassador Hotel in 1929, intending it to be a luxury "extended stay" residence for Tulsa businessmen (mostly oil business top executives), who were building mansions that were not yet ready for occupancy. Hurley never stayed in the hotel he founded. He moved to Washington, D. C. in March 1929, after President Herbert Hoover chose him to be Secretary of War, after the death of the previous Secretary, who died in December 1929. Hurley never returned to Tulsa.

The hotel business in Tulsa cooled with the onset of the Great Depression. The building had a succession of owners and uses after the Great Depression, and was vacant for more than a decade at the end of the 20th century. An investment group bought the property in 1999, and spent heavily on restoration before reopening it as a boutique hotel, a niche market it continues to occupy. In 2014, the Ambassador agreed to rebrand itself as part of the Autography Collection Hotels of Marriott International Follow them on Instagram @ambassadortuls #thisisoklahoma #stayambassadortulsa #ambassadorpartner

This is Dr George Henderson - Part 2

This is Dr George Henderson - Part 2

July 29, 2020

On this episode myself and Shannon interviewed Dr Geroge Henderson. There's so much to talk about in this episode and so much to share so we've devided it into two parts. This first part Dr Henderson talks about his early childhood up to coming to Norman Oklahoma. In Part 2 we'll dive into his work at OU and his thoughts on the future.

 

Bio

In 1967, Dr. George Henderson became the University of Oklahoma’s third full-time African American faculty member at the Norman campus. In 1969, he became the first African American in Oklahoma universities to be a distinguished professor when he was appointed the Sylvan N. Goldman Professor of Human Relations, Education and Sociology. Later, he was appointed to three other distinguished professorships: David Ross Boyd Professor, Regents’ Professor, and Kerr-McGee Presidential Professor. After he became the Goldman Professor, he founded the Human Relations Department, which he chaired for 20 years. From 1996 to 2000, he was dean of the College of Liberal Studies. Thus, he was the first African American at the University of Oklahoma to create a degree-granting department; and the first African American dean of a degree-granting college on the Norman campus. Although he retired from the University in 2006, he still teaches on a part-time basis.

 

A civil rights pioneer in higher education in Oklahoma, George Henderson has achieved many other notable accomplishments. His awards and honors include being the recipient of the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence Medal for the Outstanding College and University Professor in 2000; State of Oklahoma Black Heritage Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003; induction into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame in 2003 and also induction into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2003. The Henderson Scholars Program and the Henderson-Tolson Cultural Center on the Norman campus bear his name. The University of Oklahoma awarded him an honorary doctorate (Doctor of Humane Letters) at the May 2011 Commencement. In 2015, Oklahoma Today Magazine named Dr. Henderson one of the forty-five most influential African American Oklahomans.

 

A race relations and civil rights scholar, George Henderson has taught university courses and spoken at conferences and workshops throughout the United States and internationally. In addition, he has written 34 books and 50 articles. In 2011, the Oklahoma Historical Society selected Race and the University as the Outstanding Book on Oklahoma History published in 2010. Also in 2011, Dr. Henderson and his wife Barbara were recipients of the Xenia Institute’s Sam Mathews Social Justice Award. They were the first African American property owners in Norman. Dr. Henderson’s master’s degree in sociology and Ph.D. in educational sociology are from Wayne State University in Detroit.

 

This episode is presented by the oklahoma hall of fame. Telling Oklahoma's Story Through Its People Since 1927. Follow them on instagram @oklahomahof and online www.oklahomahof.com

 

Voices of Oklahoma Interview 

https://www.voicesofoklahoma.com/interview/henderson-george/

 

Shannon Rich Interview

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/this-is-shannon-rich/id1387331955?i=1000467234333

 

#thisisoklahoma

 

Dr Henderson new book

 

https://www.amazon.com/Cultural-Diversity-Inclusion-Justice-Henderson/dp/039809330X/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=George+henderson&qid=1595989656&s=books&sr=1-1

This is Oklahoma Wildlife

This is Oklahoma Wildlife

July 27, 2020

On this episode I sat with the JD Strong and Josh Stratton. These two gentlemen live and breath the outdoors. To the point where its almost their middle name. We had a blast talking about how diverse Oklahoma is. Its one of very few states in the nation with as many eco systems. There's so much wildlife here its baffling to think about it. The impact the wildlife department has on the state of Oklahoma and its tourism, dollars brought in by Oklahomans and outside visitors will shock you. Truly an awesome episode and like myself you'll be ready to spend your pocket money on a rod and some waders to go fly fishing in SE Oklahoma! 

 

The Department of Wildlife has a fantastic social media presence but if you don't already follow them you can find them @okwildlifedept and find Josh's blog @against_current

 

www.wildlifedepartment.com 

 

#thisisoklahoma 

This is Wildflower: An Acton Academy

This is Wildflower: An Acton Academy

July 24, 2020

On this episode I sat with Brooke & Jimmy Ogle who've opened up their own school in NW OKC out of a need for better education and opportunities for their three kids.

 

Here's their story,

Jimmy and Brooke are both from Oklahoma and have been married since 2009. Together they have three children, each of whom attends Wildflower: An Acton Academy. As a family, they enjoy traveling, playing games, reading, and discovering new things.

As a mom, I wanted a different education for my children. After trying both a public and a private Christian school, I knew that the education I dreamed of offering my kids could not be found within the walls of traditional education. That is when I turned to homeschool. I loved educating my kids in unique ways, allowing them to flourish without the unneeded pressure traditional schools encouraged. Then one day, while struggling to piece together some curriculum, I felt homeschooling was still missing some critical aspects. The question that plagued me was if a traditional school or even homeschooling was the best education I could provide my children. I didn’t want to settle for just ok – I wanted excellence. In my heart, I believed there had to be a better way! I felt somewhat stuck between recognizing that my kids had outgrown homeschooling but not feeling confident in any school options available.

That is when I found Acton Academy a nonprofit foundation that helps parents open schools worldwide. Acton co-founders Jeff and Laura Sandefer opened the first Acton in Austin Texas in 2008 to create a more robust education for their two sons. They have taken their best practices and learning philosophies and are helping other like-minded families open schools all over the world. It was as if a blurry vision and determination to offer my kids the best education had suddenly become crystal clear.

If you are ready to reinvent education for your family, I encourage you to give me a call or schedule a school tour. I look forward to meeting your family.

 

For more information click here to visit their website:

 

www.wildfloweracton.com

 

#thisisoklahoma

This is Dr George Henderson - Part 1

This is Dr George Henderson - Part 1

July 22, 2020

On this episode myself and Shannon interviewed Dr Geroge Henderson. There's so much to talk about in this episode and so much to share so we've devided it into two parts. This first part Dr Henderson talks about his early childhood up to coming to Norman Oklahoma. In Part 2 we'll dive into his work at OU and his thoughts on the future.

 

Bio

In 1967, Dr. George Henderson became the University of Oklahoma’s third full-time African American faculty member at the Norman campus. In 1969, he became the first African American in Oklahoma universities to be a distinguished professor when he was appointed the Sylvan N. Goldman Professor of Human Relations, Education and Sociology. Later, he was appointed to three other distinguished professorships: David Ross Boyd Professor, Regents’ Professor, and Kerr-McGee Presidential Professor. After he became the Goldman Professor, he founded the Human Relations Department, which he chaired for 20 years. From 1996 to 2000, he was dean of the College of Liberal Studies. Thus, he was the first African American at the University of Oklahoma to create a degree-granting department; and the first African American dean of a degree-granting college on the Norman campus. Although he retired from the University in 2006, he still teaches on a part-time basis.

 

A civil rights pioneer in higher education in Oklahoma, George Henderson has achieved many other notable accomplishments. His awards and honors include being the recipient of the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence Medal for the Outstanding College and University Professor in 2000; State of Oklahoma Black Heritage Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003; induction into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame in 2003 and also induction into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2003. The Henderson Scholars Program and the Henderson-Tolson Cultural Center on the Norman campus bear his name. The University of Oklahoma awarded him an honorary doctorate (Doctor of Humane Letters) at the May 2011 Commencement. In 2015, Oklahoma Today Magazine named Dr. Henderson one of the forty-five most influential African American Oklahomans.

 

A race relations and civil rights scholar, George Henderson has taught university courses and spoken at conferences and workshops throughout the United States and internationally. In addition, he has written 34 books and 50 articles. In 2011, the Oklahoma Historical Society selected Race and the University as the Outstanding Book on Oklahoma History published in 2010. Also in 2011, Dr. Henderson and his wife Barbara were recipients of the Xenia Institute’s Sam Mathews Social Justice Award. They were the first African American property owners in Norman. Dr. Henderson’s master’s degree in sociology and Ph.D. in educational sociology are from Wayne State University in Detroit.

 

This episode is presented by the oklahoma hall of fame. Telling Oklahoma's Story Through Its People Since 1927. Follow them on instagram @oklahomahof and online www.oklahomahof.com

 

Voices of Oklahoma Interview 

https://www.voicesofoklahoma.com/interview/henderson-george/

 

Shannon Rich Interview

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/this-is-shannon-rich/id1387331955?i=1000467234333

 

#thisisoklahoma

 

This is Tom Coyne - Oklahoma Golf #16

This is Tom Coyne - Oklahoma Golf #16

July 20, 2020

On this episode of This is Oklahoma Golf myself and Blake interviewed legendary golf writer Tom Coyne. Tom recently completed his latest book traveling around the country for 8 months playing 250 golf courses including every single US Open venue. One of which was in Tulsa at Southern Hills Country Club. Tom talks about his experience in Tulsa and all of the memories from his 8month journey across the country. Tom's book released Spring of 2021. If you don't want to wait till then you can tune into his Youtube channel and watch his vlog series "The Links Life" capturing his journey across the country.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65coIBIaQSw&list=PLe7hpdYG3UAiJEcqUIke7q5Pm52PxZ-qm

The People. The Stories. The Community.

Follow Tom on Instagram and twitter @coynewriter and listen to the Golfers Journal Podcast. The Golfer Journal where Tom is the Senior Writer is a beautiful publication and worth its weight on your coffee table. @golfersjournal

www.tomcoyne.com

Tom Coyne is the author of the novel A Gentleman’s Game, which was named one of the best 25 sports books of all time by The Philadelphia Daily News.  He wrote the film adaptation of the novel, which starred Gary Sinise, Philip Baker Hall, Dylan Baker, and Mason Gamble.  His second book, Paper Tiger: An Obsessed Golfer’s Quest to Play with the Pros was released June 2006, and was an editor’s pick in Esquire Magazine and USA Today, and a summer reading selection in The New York Times.   His third book, A Course Called Ireland: A Long Walk in Search of a Country, a Pint, and the Next Tee, was published by Gotham Books in February, 2009, and it chronicles his quest to walk and golf the whole of Ireland.  The book was a New York Times, American Booksellers Association, and Barnes & Noble bestseller, and won a silver medal from the Society of American Travel Writers in the category of Best Travel Book of the Year. 
 
His anticipated follow-up to A Course Called Ireland was released by Simon & Schuster in 2018: A Course Called Scotland was an instant New York Times bestseller, and chronicles Tom’s quest to play every links course in Scotland, searching the highlands for the secret to golf and a tee time in the oldest championship in sports.

Tom is a regular contributor to The Golfer’s Journal, and has written for Golf Magazine, Golfweek, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times, and numerous other publications.  He is also a host and writer for the travel television series, “Golfing the World.”  Tom earned an M.F.A. in fiction writing from the University of Notre Dame, where he won the William Mitchell Award for distinguished achievement.  He lives outside Philadelphia with his wife and two daughters, and he is an associate professor of English at St. Joseph’s University.

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