Leonard Phelps and Yoshie Good Scholarship

Five scholarships have been established with the USAO Alumni Association to honor members of the Good family by Yoshie Good of Chickasha. The Goods were early residents of Chickasha where they have served as civic, art and church leaders for more than a century.

The scholarships are named to honor her husband, Leonard Phelps Good, his brother Cavin F. Good; their parents, Jacob Calvin Good and Belle Leonard Good; their grandmother, Ella Taylor Leonard and to honor Isaac and Mary Good.

The Leonard Phelps and Yoshie Good Scholarship is given to students majoring in English who plan to pursue graduate studies. Leonard is remembered both as an artist and as an educator. Born June 25, 1907, in Chickasha, he attended Chickasha Schools, graduating in 1923, but received no art instruction there. His encouragement came from a relative, Willie Baze Pond, professional artist and teacher in Chickasha. However, his artwork was used for posters, illustrations for events, and for the 1923 yearbook.

He graduated from the University of Oklahoma where, after a career teaching in public schools, he soon became a faculty member. In 1952, he joined the faculty at Drake University, Iowa, where he became head of the department in 1952, retiring in 1977. In 1977, he and his wife, Yoshie, returned to Chickasha after a 50 year absence. He remained an active member of the art community, exhibiting art at the time of his death in 2000.

As a teacher he taught drawing and painting using down to earth realistic everyday scenes. Tom Skogstrom, a former student and commercial artist, said, “it was clear in Leonard’s studio that we would not be breaking rules until we were well aware of the rules being broken.” He is one of many students who moved into the professional realm of art. Among the others are Stanley Hess, a student at the University of Oklahoma, who like his teacher, became a professor of art at Drake University, and it was Hess who recommended Good to Drake University as the person most qualified to be a member of the art department.

In 1993, Oklahoma Governor David Walters proclaimed Jan. 17 as “Leonard Good Day” throughout the state.

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