Foundation History

Edward L. Gaylord and his wife Thelma

Edward L. Gaylord and his wife Thelma established the E.L. and Thelma Gaylord Foundation in 1994 to support a wide range of charitable activities.

Mr. and Mrs. Gaylord were among Oklahoma’s leading citizens

It has been said of Edward L. Gaylord that for all of his influences and financial resources, he remained a solid, practical, principled, down-to-earth and generous man with his own unique style of warmth and good humor. He loved his home and his family, and enjoyed contributing to dozens of philanthropic causes. He was a gentleman. Much of what he contributed to Oklahoma City and the state of Oklahoma was done privately, without fanfare.

Thelma Gaylord served in many roles – beloved wife, mother, and grandmother, corporate executive and civic leader. Her contributions over nearly half a century to various cultural, educational and charitable organizations greatly enriched the life of the community and state that she loved. In 1987, Governor Henry Bellmon named her as one of the first recipients of his “State of Excellence” award for her positive contributions to Oklahoma.