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Kathleen Patton Westby

Quotes from Katie

You really can't get things done without letting  people know where you stand on things and why you want them to do something. KPW - 1995

Funding for the arts and humanities is not an expense, it is an investment in people and in communication between people. - KPW 1993

My greatest achievement? - Personally it is my family. In terms of community, it’s not just one thing - I was part of the origination of the Arts and Humanities Council and the Arts Commission, part of the committee to build the Performing Arts Center, part of the committee that oversaw the addition at Philbrook and overall the growth of the arts in Tulsa.

How would I like to be remembered? As the first woman to do various things in the city. First on PSO board - one of the first on the TU board.As a person who worked hard, tried to make friends and left a legacy of the importance of art in our daily lives.

Words of wisdom to pass on? How do you get to Carnegie Hall - work, work, work. All of my life has been work - no passing on the hard stuff. - KPW 1997

The Kathleen Patton Westby Foundation

Founding Trustee:  Kathleen P. Westby, “Katie Westby”, (1919-2000) is known to Tulsa history for her contributions to the origination and inception of many of Tulsa’s artistic treasures.  She was a formidable advocate for and helped to greatly influence Tulsa’s advent as the cultural center of the State.

Katie and her husband, Gerry Westby, generously gave of their time, talents and money to help build a growing Tulsa.  The list of their contributions is long and impressive, including Tulsa University,Tulsa’s Performing Arts Center Trust, The Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa, The Philbrook Museum of Art, all of Tulsa’s major performing arts organizations and many others.

Katie was a woman of substance who did not like or seek the lime light. Tribute to her convictions, quiet persistence and life-long dedication to Tulsa can be found in many of Tulsa’s public places and not-for-profit organizations.

Katie helped to shepherd historic preservation efforts such as the beautiful Central High School, which became the home for PSO, and the stately Harwelden Mansion, now home of the Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa.

Quality of life and belief that the city’s built environment should be both functional and beautiful also spurred her efforts to implement the City’s 1%-for-art ordinance in 1980 – an ordinance that went on to become a national model.

She was the 1978 recipient of the 1st Annual Tulsa Chapter of American Institute of Architects Award, the 1980 AIA Regional Award, and elected honorary member of the AIA in 1981.  To quote Katie Westby, “I am one of the many who work hard in playing a part in developing this wonderful city in which we live.”

Being a strong believer and supporter of the arts all of her adult life, Katie wished to continue her work by establishing the Kathleen Patton Westby Foundation in 1989 as a vehicle to supplement her support of the arts and arts education.

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