Teatime Toast to Moms event recap

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L to R: Dr. Margaret Hudson Award Honoree: Vanessa Hall-Harper, BS, MSM, MHP Director Betina Tillman, Dr. Margaret Hudson Award Honoree: Dr. Jan Figart, and MHP Alumnae Honorees: Heidi Spencer and Karen Alley.

Saturday morning, April 8, 2017, the Margaret Hudson Program hosted its second annual “Teatime Toast to Moms” special event. Margaret Hudson students, alumnae and guests gathered to celebrate motherhood at a special brunch event held at the Tulsa Community College, Thomas K. McKeon Center for Creativity, in downtown Tulsa.

The Teatime Toast to Moms honored two Tulsa leaders and mothers with the Dr. Margaret Hudson Award for their community service and public health advocacy. Dr. Hudson was a former Health Director at the Tulsa Health Department in the 1960s who advocated for the special needs of pregnant and parenting teen girls and their babies, including achieving academic success and increasing access to maternal and infant health care.

The 2017 Margaret Hudson Award honorees were Dr. Jan Figart, Associate Director of the Community Service Council of Greater Tulsa and Vanessa Hall-Harper, MSM, Tulsa District 1 City Councilor and Child Health and Policy Manager with the Tulsa Health Department. Read their complete bios: Dr. Jan FigartVanessa Hall-Harper, MSMKaren Alley and Heidi Spencer.

In addition to the presentation of the Dr. Margaret Hudson Awards, two MHP Alumnae were honored – the 2017 MHP Alumnae honorees were Karen Alley and Heidi Spencer.

Karen Alley serves as the director of the Tulsa Hope Pregnancy Center, a nonprofit ministry that provides free services to Oklahomans experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. When Karen enrolled at Margaret Hudson as a high school junior in 1983 she was the only girl in her class who made a plan of adoption for her baby. Though this was a difficult emotional time, Karen credits her MHP teachers and the staff for being very sensitive and caring.

Heidi Spencer attended Margaret Hudson her junior year in high school. After graduating high school in 2001, she enrolled at Tulsa Community College. She graduated from the TCC nursing program in 2004 and secured her Registered Nursing license in 2005.

The Mickie Taylor Memorial Scholarship was awarded to MHP senior Dayanna Palacios-Ruiz to support their post-secondary studies and careers. Established in 2016 following the untimely passing of Margaret Hudson Program (MHP) alumnae and former MHP Board member, Mickie Taylor – the Mickie Taylor Memorial Scholarship is awarded each year to a Margaret Hudson graduate. The award is given to recognize outstanding student academic achievement and commitment to continue post-secondary studies and pursue personal career goals.

The artwork featured on the Teatime Toast to Moms invitation and publicity was created by Tulsa artist Allison Keim. Allison is a painter known for her landscapes and figure paintings, depicted in an abstracted, gestural style. Allison’s work is often ethereal and organic. Her work can be viewed online at allisonkeim.com.

Sponsors of the Teatime Toast to Moms event included ABCO Rents, Community Service Council of Greater Tulsa, Geraldine Webb, St. John Health System, Todd Family Charitable Foundation, and Walsh Branding.