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Oran M. Roberts

Oran M. Roberts

Chapter 440

United Daughters of the Confederacy®


Houston, Harris County, Texas


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Judah P. Benjamin Award


Connie Richards and dogs

Connie Sue Schram Richards
Presented - 13 June 2009 - National Recipient Number 182


Biographical Narrative


Connie Sue Schram Richards was born on 9 Jan 1954 in Brazos Co., TX and is the daughter of William Earnest Schram and Inora Laura Rosenkranz. She has one sibling, a sister Billie Schram Stafford.

Connie attended J. Frank Dobie High School in Houston, Harris Co., TX and is a member of the Class of 1972.

After graduation Connie and her sister opened The Braeswood Boutique where they are both hairdressers.

On 20 Oct 1977 in Harris Co., TX, Connie was married to William (Bill) Jack Richards, Jr. He was born on 2 Jan 1950 in Philadelphia, PA and is the son of Jack and Betty Richards.

Connie and Bill are the parents of Andrew William Richards.

In 1997, Faithful Paws was founded by Connie. The idea was formed while sitting at a meeting in the church when they were trying to find new ways of giving back to the community. Connie, who had been training and competing in dog shows for many years, thought this was an ideal way to use her expertise combined with the animals she loves to brighten and enhance the lives of others. Caring ministries, part of Bellaire United Methodist Church sponsored the program and Connie was off to a flying start.

Despite her busy career as a hairdresser, Connie always makes time to teach the Pet Therapy classes each week and make the many visits to hospitals and nursing homes. Each week Connie’s enthusiasm and love for this charity is evident. She beams with pride each time a new facility calls to ask the volunteers to visit. Her encouragement and patience with all the new volunteers and dogs that join the training classes is an inspiration to all. Her wealth of knowledge in all aspects of pet care, training and Pet Therapy is endless.

As word has spread in the Houston area, this group now has over 80 active, certified human-pet pairs and they now visit 16 different nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospitals, children’s rehab and even children’s ICU at a hospital where the pets also wear masks.

Faithful Paws, Connie’s brainchild, brings smiles and happiness to literally thousands of people every month. Without her guidance, leadership and enthusiasm, this organization would not exist nor be able to sustain itself. She truly exemplifies the humanitarianism this award honor.



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Judah P. Benjamin Pin

The Judah P. Benjamin Award is presented to honor the Secretary of State of the Confederate States of America. It consists of a certificate awarded to individuals for outstanding endeavors and achievements not necessarily related to the Confederacy in the following fields: civic / community service, conservation, education, the environment, humanitarian efforts and patriotic service.

In 2001, the award was approved at the 108th Annual General Convention held in Columbia, SC. The first award was presented in 2002 at the 109th Annual Convention held in Richmond, VA by President General Mrs. Frank I. Silek to Dr. O. James Lightehizer, President of the Civil War Preservation Trust.

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