Now in its 17th year, the Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award luncheon has raised more than $700,000 in scholarships for students at Texas Woman’s University. The luncheon held on Wednesday, February 27, at the Belo Mansion bolstered that total, as nearly 300 people turned out to honor Dale Petroskey, this year’s Leadership Award winner, and five scholarship award recipients.
First, though, the guests — Don Glendenning, Sheryl Pidgeon, Roslyn Dawson Thompson, Felix Lozano, Mary L.A. and Bob Stanton and past Award recipients Tincy Miller (2004), Lindalyn Adams (2007), Mary Brinegar (2014), Stephen Mansfield (2017) and Norm Bagwell (2018), among them — heard from Bob White, whose Bank of Texas has sponsored the event for more than a decade, and from Virginia Chandler Dykes herself. Virginia recalled how the inaugural Leadership Award luncheon, a much more modest affair, had been held at the Lakewood Country Club.
Then, as the luncheon of salad, herb-dusted filet beef, mashed potatoes, asparagus and a roasted tomato was being enjoyed, 2015 Award recipient/Luncheon Chair Ralph Hawkins introduced the man of the hour. Dale, we learned, has been president and CEO of the Dallas Regional Chamber since 2014, after serving previously as an assistant White House press secretary under President Ronald Reagan and as president of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York.
During his brief remarks, Dale applauded Carine Feyten, TWU’s chancellor and president, for her “ability to connect with people,” and for her “vision” for the university. After giving a shout-out to the likes of Norm Bagwell, Wendy Lopez, Chris Durovich and Hattie Hill, Dale turned next to thank Ann Petroskey, his wife of 40 years. “I hate to think where I’d be without Ann,” he said. “Probably not very good. She smoothed off my rough edges.”
Dale also recognized his five sisters, various staffers at the chamber, and his two grandmothers. “One of them went to mass every morning,” he recalled. “She literally was a saint. [The other grandmother] smoked, drank, and played cards. Both lived to the same age, so I think there’s a lesson there!”
With that, Carine took the stage. She called Dale a “mensch,” and pointed out that TWU has an annual impact of $1.8 billion on the North Texas economy. Then, as always at this luncheon, it was time to honor the Virginia Chandler Dykes Scholarship Award winners. The 2019 scholarships went to Paramita Basu, representing TWU’s College of Arts & Sciences; Meghan Labiak, from the College of Business; Janice Kishi Chow, College of Health Sciences; Amie Bedgood, College of Nursing; and Patricia Flint, College of Professional Education.
* Photo credit: Kristina Bowman