With the exhibition War/Photography: Images of Armed Conflict and Its Aftermath as inspiration for the evening's theme, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston's One Great Night in November saluted the U.S. military while raising $1.58 million.
Retired Linn Energy CEO Michael Linn chaired the dinner evening that was among the highest grossing in the event's 29-year history. Highlighting the military theme, the University of Houston Corps of Cadets presented the colors, a 1944 M-8 Armored Car was parked at the Law Building entrance and centerpieces featured military props such as helmets and ammunition cases in place of flowers.
The greenbacks flowed as a who's who of Houston leadership contributed to the success that resulted in the purchase of 29 artworks ranging from a 19th century painting to an ancient ceramic vessel to an inkjet print of a journalist emerging from Saddam Hussein's underground hiding place in Iraq.
Guaranteeing a tidy take for the museum were major underwriters Ralph Eads III, Jim Flores, Bill Hill, the Lawrence Family Foundation, Meredith Long/Fayez Sarofim, Bob McNair and Nabors Industries.
Among the 350 gents who perused a selection of artworks for purchase and voted on their choices were Tony Petrello, Herman Stude, Marty Goossen, Eddie Allen, Jeff Hildebrand, Les Ballard, Peter Coneway, Holbrook Dorn, Michael Gamson, Berdon Lawrence and Will Mathis. Museum director Gary Tinterow and partner Christopher Gardner were headliners in the group that sat down for dinner by City Kitchen.