Five Cowgirls to Receive Honors at the 39th Annual National Cowgirl Hall of Fame Inductions
FORT WORTH, TEXAS (July 16, 2014) – The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame – the only museum in the world dedicated to honoring women of the American West who have displayed extraordinary courage in their trailblazing efforts – is pleased to announce the 2014 National Cowgirl Hall of Fame Inductees, who will be honored in the 39th annual induction ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 23, at the Will Rogers Memorial Center Round Up Inn in Fort Worth, Texas. This year’s class includes a sister-duo known for their award-winning Chuckwagon cooking; a nationally-known trick rider and cattlewoman; a celebrated Fort Worth pathologist; and a Hollywood Western screenwriter.
The 2014 inductees are:
- Jean Cates and Sue Cunningham: Tasty traditions have always been served up in Jean Cates and Sue Cunningham’s family. Born in Turkey, Texas, the sisters learned what it meant to be real cowboy cooks thanks to their father. They began the C-Bar-C Chuckwagon and made history in 1992 when they walked away with the winnings at the Western Heritage Classic Cook-off in Abilene, Texas, as the first women team to claim the top honor. In 1996, they were awarded the American Cowboy Culture Award presented by the National Cowboy Symposium and Celebration. They were also named Chuckwagon of the Year by the Academy of Western Artists.
- Shirley Lucas Jauregui: Shirley Lucas Jauregui dreamed of owning and riding a horse while growing up on the edge of Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Jauregui and her sister, Sharon, landed their first trick riding appearance at the 1948 Lakeside Rodeo followed by the Sheriff’s Rodeo at the Los Angeles Coliseum. The sister act juggled their nationally-known act, performing at the National Western Stock Show in Denver, the Cow Palace, and Albuquerque, with movie contract work, doubling for movie industry names such as Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Shirley Jones, Betty Hutton, Grace Kelly, just to name a few. They also had their hand in designing the latest western fashions for women by working with brands such as Wrangler. Jauregui was named California’s Cattlewoman of the Year in 1996, and received the Tad Lucas Memorial Award from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in 2008.
- May Owen, M.D. (1891-1988): Dr. May Owen committed to a career in medicine at the age of nine when she discovered her true passion was helping others. Her first patients were animals on her family’s farm in Falls County, Texas. While she attended high school in Fort Worth, Texas, she remained committed to helping her father on the farm every weekend and still graduated at the top of her class. The first woman to enroll in Louisville Medical College in Kentucky, she earned her medical degree in 1921, and continued studies at Mayo Clinic and Bellevue Hospital in New York City. Owen contributed to the world of veterinary medicine by assisting with the development of a rabies vaccine and the discovery of diabetes in sheep when fed molasses cake. Her greatest contribution to the field of pathology was discovering the danger of surgical glove powder.
- Frances Kavanaugh Hecker (1915-2009): Known as the “Cowgirl of the Typewriter,” Frances Kavanaugh Hecker was one of the few women writing western screenplays in Hollywood, a primarily male-dominated profession. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up around ranching in Houston which gave her what she called “the feeling of Westerns.” Her credits began with the Driftin’ Kid in 1941, and over the next ten years, worked on over 30 films starring the likes of Tom Keene, Lash LaRue, Eddie Dean, Ken Maynard, Bob Steele, and Hoot Gibson.
The National Cowgirl Hall of Fame selection process is rigorous and lengthy. Out of a competitive list, which consistently grows with each new nomination, only four or five successful candidates per calendar year are honored with the prestigious distinction of becoming a National Cowgirl Hall of Fame Inductee. The Hall of Fame is grouped in to five categories: artists and writers, champions and competitive performers, entertainers, ranchers (stewards of land and livestock), or trailblazers and pioneers. Since 1975, 215 women have been inducted.
“We are pleased with the selection of this year’s inductees, and welcome them to the Hall of Fame family.” said Patricia Riley, Executive Director, National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame. “Each brings a unique cowgirl story to the Hall of Fame that will be preserved for generations to come.”
The Induction luncheon and ceremony is the largest event for the Hall of Fame, and draws approximately 700-1,000 attendees each year. The event will kick off at 10:00 a.m. with the opening of holiday shopping vendor booths and a champagne reception followed by the Induction luncheon and ceremony. For ticket information, please contact Emmy Lou Prescott at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 817-509-8965.
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About the National Cowgirl Museum & Hall of Fame
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame honors and celebrates women, past and present, whose lives exemplify the courage, resilience, and independence that helped shape the American West, and fosters an appreciation of the ideals and spirit of self-reliance they inspire. The Hall of Fame’s purpose is twofold: to preserve the history and impact of western women living from the mid-1800s to present day, and to foster an appreciation for their ideals and spirit of self-reliance. These women are the legacy of legends — artists and writers, champions and competitive performers, entertainers, ranchers (stewards of land and livestock), trailblazers and pioneers. The Museum is considered an invaluable national educational resource for its exhibits, research library, rare photograph collection, and award-winning distance-learning programs for grades K-12 and adults.
Located at 1720 Gendy Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76107, the Cowgirl is open Monday (Memorial Day to Labor Day) from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is $8 for children ages 3 to 12 and senior citizens (60+) and $10 for adults (ages 13+). For more information, please visit www.cowgirl.net or call 817-476-FAME (3263).