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Dr. Susan Snider Osterberg: A Crusader for the Arts

CKW Luxe is proud to announce that Dr. Susan Snider Osterberg is our honoree for the Astral Light Award. This award goes to a philanthropic woman who is inspiring and transforming lives through art or music.

“A Godly leader ... finds strength by realizing his weakness … finds vision by seeing the needs of others, finds credibility by being an example, finds loyalty by expressing compassion, finds honor by being faithful, finds greatness by being a servant.” – Roy Lessin

Dr. Susan Snider Osterberg has devoted her professional career to the field of communication. She received her bachelor’s degree in communication from Northwestern University and graduate degrees in the same field from Southern Illinois University and the University of Houston. She has been associated with the Nina Vance Alley Theatre as well as the Elementary School for Creative and Performing Arts where she authored and directed plays, taught, and coached performers for television and film. During her residency with the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in Washington, D.C., Dr. Osterberg researched, analyzed, and evaluated national arts education funding and developed an extensive report used by the NEA and the U.S. Office of Education for the planning and development of arts education funding policy in America.

Dr. Osterberg was one of three American women selected to represent the United States in an international cultural exchange program in Sierra Leone, West Africa that included the exchange of information on arts education curriculum and administration and the introduction of the arts of Texas to the people of West Africa. As a consultant to the Houston Independent School District, Dr. Osterberg advised the Houston Superintendent of Schools on various policy decisions and the implementation of an arts education curriculum. Currently, Dr. Osterberg is an educator in the University of Houston System, Arts and Communication Studies Department, where she is concluding an extensive research study on the physical and emotional components pre- and post-performance. She is also revising a mystery she authored entitled “A Test for Those Who Quest the Best Bequest.”

In addition to her scholarly endeavors, Dr. Osterberg blends her love of the arts and communication with business acumen. For many years she has produced and marketed oranges and grapefruit as owner of a citrus grove in Florida. She is married to Edward C. Osterberg, Jr., and they have one son, Charles, who is a fellow in Laparoscopic Surgery. He is also doing clinical trial research at the University of California, San Francisco.

Susan Osterberg has relished experiencing outdoor challenges as varied as a one woman climb on Mount Everest, gathering underwater research data with Cousteau off Mosquito Island, ice climbing and driving a dog team in the Subarctic, rafting the Bang Pakong River in Thailand, tracking the elusive Woolly monkey in the Amazon, and searching for the mountain gorilla families in the Volcans.
In service to the community, Dr. Osterberg is guided by the Shakespearean adage, “The quality of giving blesses twice: he who receives and he who gives.” She has provided cornerstone support and leadership for numerous organizations internationally, nationally, and in Houston. As a respected community leader and advocate for the arts, Dr. Osterberg has worked tirelessly on the boards of the Houston Symphony League, the Houston Ballet Guild, and Young Audiences of Houston. Other leadership and philanthropic roles have included Regent, Council of One Hundred and National Advisory Council for Northwestern University; member of the Executive Board of the American Leadership Forum; member of the Center for Houston’s Future Leadership Forum; member of Leadership Texas; member of Leadership Houston; President of the River Oaks Women’s Breakfast Club; and member of the boards of the State of Texas College Opportunity Act and the Houston Bar Association Auxiliary.

In appreciation of her service, Dr. Osterberg has received numerous honors from organizations. These include the Houston Bar Association Auxiliary Public Service Award, Northwestern University Alumna Service Medal, Roycemore School Distinguished Alumna Award, a Nina Vance Alley Theatre Scholarship named in her honor, and being named the University of Houston Outstanding Volunteer of the Year. Dr. Osterberg has also been named one of Houston’s 50 Most Influential Women, and, in 2015, she was honored as a Woman of Distinction.

Dr. Osterberg believes that Houston is a world-class city that enthusiastically supports the arts. Her donation of her time, talent, and support in furthering the arts in Houston reflects her conviction in, and is underscored by, her commitment of giving back to her community and her dedication to keeping Houston a truly vibrant and most livable city. She was one of the early editors of Opera Cues magazine and a member of the City of Houston Mayor’s Arts Task Force. Currently, she serves as the Chair of the University of St. Thomas Performing and Fine Arts Society and the Chair-elect of the University of Houston Moores School of Music.

CKW Luxe would like to congratulate Dr. Susan Osterberg on being the Astral Light Award honoree. Her devoted work in arts education has made a meaningful difference in the lives of all who have benefited from it. Due to her love of the arts and her sincere commitment to community service, Dr. Osterberg has contributed to all cultural aspects of Houston life. Her fearless enthusiasm for outdoor adventures in her personal life is reflected in her approach to accomplishing whatever she sets out to achieve in her professional life. Recognizing the needs of others, Dr. Osterberg contributes her time, abilities, and compassion to finding resolutions to those needs. As the embodiment of the award, Dr. Osterberg aims for the stars in all her endeavors and more than succeeds in surpassing them.

These are her words to live by: Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Philippians 4:8

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