Beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, friend and colleague, Karen Levitt Davis passed away on July 15, 2020. Married for 55 years to the love of her life, Barry Davis, Karen was the heart and soul of her immediate and extended family, a faithful and generous friend, and a powerful force in the Tulsa community.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Karen called Tulsa home for more than 50 years, becoming a well-known champion for progressive community causes and initiatives. Through her extensive work with the Tulsa Community Foundation and the George Kaiser Family Foundation, Karen served as a key voice for equality in education, housing, employment, healthcare and social services in Tulsa.

Among many community accomplishments, Karen helped establish a program to fund local LGBTQ services; helped create an emergency relief fund for displaced workers; and helped lead the effort to support victims of Hurricane Katrina in Tulsa. Most notably, Karen was a critical driver and visionary behind Step Up Tulsa, a transformational comprehensive community plan. She was also a generous supporter of major community projects including The Gathering Place and John Hope Franklin Reconciliation Park, and proudly served as president of the Junior League of Tulsa.

A cherished friend to so many, Karen brought grace, warmth and charm to every gathering. She was widely appreciated and admired not only for her quick wit and caring nature but also her unmatched style.

Most importantly, Karen was fiercely committed to her family. She was a matriarch in every way and gave endlessly of herself to provide unconditional love and support. She was an enthusiastic participant in family celebrations, as well as a calming force through challenging times. She could be counted on always to provide warm and wise counsel to her children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Karen is survived by her loving husband, three daughters, two sons, five grandchildren, a sister, and scores of loving extended family members. She will be remembered with great love and missed dearly by all.

A virtual memorial service will be held on Monday, July 20, at 11am via Temple Israel. Advance registration is required which can be accessed at

Memorial donations in loving memory of Karen may go to The 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission Fund at Tulsa Community Foundation ( or Temple Israel ( Fitzgerald Ivy Chapel, 918-585-1151

To plant a tree in memory of Karen Davis as a living tribute, please visit Tribute Store.
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