Betty Massey will be honored as Galveston Historical Foundation’s 23rd annual “Steel Oleander” at a luncheon on Thursday, April 21st. The event will begin at 11:30 a.m. at the 1880 Garten Verein, 2704 Avenue O. Luncheon tickets are $60 each and reserved tables for 10 are available for $850. There will also be a reception honoring Massey at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20th at the 1859 Ashton Villa, 2328 Broadway. Tickets for the reception alone are $40 each and reserved tables for 8 are available for $400. Package tickets that include both the reception and the luncheon are $90 per individual or $1,100 for a table. To make reservations, click the links below or call 409-765-3431.





“I am honored to join some 22 Galveston women as this year’s Steel Oleander recipient. This award was the outgrowth of a wonderful exhibit that the late Susan Eckel and others produced at the Galveston County Historical Museum.” says Betty Massey. “I remember Dolph Tillotson speaking at the first Steel Oleander luncheon where we honored the work of the late Alfreda Houston. Dolph talked about Galveston being a town where ‘men drank coffee and women ran the show.’  I don’t know about “running the show”, but I do know that the women of this community have played critical roles in the growth and development of Galveston.”

The “Steel Oleander” award, a cast oleander blossom sculpted by the late Galveston sculptor David Moore, is given each year to salute an outstanding Galveston woman whose community service reflects the ideals and independent spirit of Miss Bettie Brown of Ashton Villa. Frost Bank is the major sponsor of the event, with additional contributions by Stewart Title.

“GHF is proud to recognize one of the community most effective leaders,” states Dwayne Jones, GHF Executive Director. “Betty has volunteered in so many areas to make our lives better, it’s hard to name just one or two areas of contribution. She is well deserving of the honor of being Steal Oleander 2016.”

Betty is the Executive Director of the Mary Moody Northen Endowment. The Endowment is responsible for the overall management of a private charitable foundation that owns and operates two historic properties, the 1895 Moody family home in Galveston and Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia. The Endowment makes charitable grants in both Texas and Virginia.

Massey received her B.A. degree in History from the University of California, Berkeley. Her community work is substantial, with highlights including; Executive Director of Galveston Historical Foundation, Galveston County Historical Museum Director and Teacher and Director of East End Preschool. She is currently a founding board member and president of the Moody Early Childhood Center and president of the board of Artist Boat. She was co-founder of the Galveston County Recovery Fund, Galveston Children’s Collaborative and Galveston Educational Foundation, chair of the City of Galveston Long Term Recovery Committee and a founding member of Galveston Children’s Collaborative among many additional years of service throughout the community.

One Response

  1. Karen Wright

    I was active on the island back in 1986 +, I moved away but have missed my island and I hope to return and get active once again. Betty Massey was always in the for front of what ever was going on. I admire her and wish her well. She will not remember me and that is not important but her work has inspired me off of the island. Too many nice things to say. Congrats “Steal Oleander 2016” the honor is well deserved. Karen Wright


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