OKC Beautiful, Oklahoma City’s only nonprofit organization dedicated to the beautification of Oklahoma City, elected Phillips Murrah Attorney Samuel D. Newton to its Board of Directors to serve as the organization’s treasurer.
“I feel that, at some point in the not too distant past, aesthetics gave way to efficiency,” Newton said. “Cities and towns often fail to think about how the atmosphere of the city helps attract businesses and promote civic involvement.
“Coming from Austin, where the city is very deliberate about growth, I was heartened to see that Oklahoma City also had an understanding of the importance of atmosphere and aesthetics in an overall plan.”
Newton said Attorney Mary Holloway Richard suggested he consider OKC Beautiful. He met with Carla Sharpe, past OKC Beautiful President, to discuss the organization and how his skills and abilities could be of use and was nominated to be on the Board.
“As treasurer, I will be responsible for working with the Executive Director and Finance Committee to ensure that budgets are met and kept,” he said. “More importantly, for my new role, I want to work to increase the OKC Beautiful endowment to ensure sustainable growth and future successes.”
Newton’s appointment comes at the same time as Attorney Ellen K. Spiropoulos’s role as President of the organization comes to an end.
“Finishing my two year term as President of OKC Beautiful is bittersweet since it also means I will soon be leaving the Board per our mandatory term limits,” she said. “I have been privileged to be President as the organization prepared for and celebrated its 50th anniversary, which was a great opportunity to reflect on all the individuals and achievements of our past and how the mission of OKC Beautiful continues and into the future.
“Sam will bring to his new position as Treasurer all the qualities that he make him an outstanding lawyer—attention to detail, strategic insights and problem solving skills. When you add to that his passion for Oklahoma City, he was a perfect choice for the OKC Beautiful board and now its executive committee.”
Newton will begin his role next year.
“Coming from a small town that didn’t put much stock in beautification and being a big proponent of the ‘broken windows’ theory, the mission of OKC Beautiful speaks to me as does its inter-meshing of educational and beautification programs,” Newton said. “So, I look forward to working with the organization and our other board members as we strive to build our endowment and grow our programs.”
To learn more about the organization or make a contribution, please visit the OKC Beautiful website here.