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OKLAHOMA CITY On October 11, 2015, of McLean, VA, Stephen, beloved husband of Kathleen, loving father of Margaret, Jay, and Andrea, died after a long illness. He is also survived by his mother Ruth; his brother Stanford; and sisters, Sarilee and Sharon; his grandchildren, Hayley, Will, Brian, Megan, and Sadie; and a host of cousins, close friends and colleagues. He was pre-deceased by his father Harry. He was 79.Born in Oklahoma City, OK, he attended Classen High School and the University of Oklahoma (Boomer Sooner), where he earned a degree in government. He was a member of Pi Lambda Phi fraternity, and the celebrated Four Lams singing group. He was an instructor at the American Community School of Paris, and then served in the United States Army/Army Reserve. In 1963 Steve joined the Office of Special Services at the United States Department of State in Washington, D.C. Later he established - with his brother Stanford and wife Kathie--the Close Up Foundation which brought more than 650,000 educators, middle and high school students, and others to Washington DC to experience a hands-on close up view of our government and democratic process. He pioneered and was the first host of issue-oriented, public affairs television programs in cooperation with the Cable Satellite Public Affairs Network (C-SPAN).He went on to direct the publishing of an award-winning series of academic publications in social studies, which have been used in thousands of high schools, colleges, and libraries; established a network of local and state civic education programs throughout the US; conceptualized and launched a classroom-based civic education/community service program that reached more than one million elementary, middle, and high school students annually.He was active in: University of Oklahoma College of Liberal Arts, Board of Visitors; the University of Oklahoma International Programs Center Board of Visitors; the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center, Board of Visitors; the University of Oklahoma, Washington Alumni Chapter; the American Bar Association, Advisory Commission on Youth Education for Citizenship; the Micronesia Institute Board of Directors; and was the founding president of the Council for the Advancement of Citizenship (consortium of individuals, organizations and institutions concerned with civic education).He received honors and recognition, among them: Honorary Doctorate in Public Service from Rhode Island College; University of Oklahoma Regents' Alumni Award; Council for the Advancement of Citizenship Bicentennial Leadership Award; Common Cause Public Service Achievement Award; WJLA "Seven Salutes Seven Who Care" Award for Outstanding Washingtonian of the year and the C-SPAN "Super Citizen" Award. Steve loved good food, hot food, spicy food, comfort food, any food, and was a regular at many establishments; he played racquetball, attended high school and fraternity reunions and activities, and considered himself THE number one most loyal fan of the University of Oklahoma football team. Watching old movies and listening to music classics were favorite pastimes. His devotion to family was legendary, and on a regular basis shepherded new friends into the fold. Funeral Services are scheduled for 10:30 am on Friday, October 16, 2015, at Emanuel Synagogue, 900 NW 47th Street, Oklahoma City, OK with Interment to follow at Emanuel Hebrew Cemetery, 10600 S. Western, Oklahoma City, OK. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations to the OU Foundation (www.oufoundation.org), The Close Up Foundation (www.closeup.org), or a charity of your choosing.
Published in The Oklahoman on Oct. 14, 2015
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