Oklahoma City Businessman Gives Back to Community Through Scholarships

The Stevenson family
The Stevenson Family at Horace’s alma mater, Douglass High School. From left to right, Karen Marshall, Horace Stevenson, Horace Stevenson III, Tonjua Whetstone, Ashley Stevenson, Alisha Whetstone and Horace Stevenson Jr. Photo by Brandon Snider

“The key to any community is education,” says Oklahoma City businessman Horace Stevenson. The 1957 Douglass High School graduate certainly exemplifies his words through his longtime support of educational programs in Oklahoma City Public Schools.

After graduating from Oklahoma City University with a business administration degree, Horace opened his first restaurant, Horace’s Grill, in 1968. He joined the McDonald’s management program in 1977, and 10 years later he purchased his first of many McDonald’s franchises.

As a business owner, Horace says he prioritizes giving back to the community that gave him his start. Throughout the years, he has mentored many young people, and he established the Horace Stevenson Foundation to support youth and education programs.

“I’ve always just wanted to work hard and give back to my community,” Horace said.

In 2015, the Stevenson family began working with the Oklahoma City Community Foundation to administer a scholarship they established for high schools located in Horace’s restaurant trade areas Horace says the Community Foundation’s online application process reaches more students than they ever thought possible, making a greater impact in the community.

“By providing scholarships for students, we hope to provide them with opportunities that have the potential to change their lives,” Horace said.

The Oklahoma City Community Foundation is currently accepting applications for the Horace Stevenson Scholarship from 2019 high school seniors graduating from Douglass, Millwood, U.S. Grant, Capitol Hill, Southeast and Northeast high schools in Oklahoma City. The application deadline is March 1, 2019. Students may apply online at occf.academicworks.com.