There could not have been a more appreciative audience than the one gathered at River Oaks Country Club for the Center for Houston's Future's "Dinner and Conversation" fundraiser headlining Pulitzer Prize-winning author Larry McMurtry, screenwriter and producer Diana Ossana (Brokeback Mountain) and Texas Monthly founding editor and screenwriter (Apollo 13) Bill Broyles.
The names alone would have been enough to fill the ballroom with the 425 eager guests. But they delivered an unexpected, delicious, candid and very personal conversation from the stage. Broyles took a class under McMurtry when the author was teaching at Rice University. Ossana and McMurtry have been collaborating since 1992 and shared an Oscar for Brokeback Mountain.
The conversation ranged from McMurtry's heart surgery to his bout with depression to his works and writing. The Wichita Falls native and author of 29 novels shared his love for Houston, while long-time friend and collaborator Ossana elaborated on his remarks.
This rare evening of high talent was chaired by Anne Taylor and Ed Harris with Chevron as sponsor. The evening included presentation of the Center for Houston’s Future Impact Award to Donna F. Cole, president and CEO of Cole Chemical, Management and Distribution. Recognized as Impact Award finalists were Mack Fowler, principal and CEO of Madison Resources and Orion Pacific Holdings, and Kim Sterling, president of Sterling Associates.
The mesmerized gathering included former Texas Monthly editor Gary Curtis, Dorothy and Mickey Ables, Chevron's Joni Baird, Alex and Astley Blair, Antje and Harry Gee, Carmela and Kelly Frells, Anne and Dr. John Mendelsohn, Paul Murphy, Gwen Goffe, Marguerite and Bruce Culpepper, and Catherine Mosbacher, the Center for Houston's Future president and CEO.