2000 Roll Of Honor Recipients
Carl Files was born in 1911 and grew up in Arkansas. After graduation from Iowa State University, he took his first teaching job as a faculty member at Texas A & M University. Carl left academia for a time and worked on the engineering staffs at North American Aviation and General Dynamics. He returned to the classroom in 1959 as Chair of the Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering at Arlington State College. That year the school offered its first junior and senior level classes, leading to several new bachelor’s degree programs. As the department’s inaugural chairman, Carl designed and established the entire curricula, hired and trained the faculty, and organized the necessary physical facilities. He would later help establish the department’s master’s program. Following his retirement in 1976, Carl continued teaching classes until 1981 when he was named professor emeritus. Carl who died in 1991 loved to read and to work crossword puzzles. He was an avid gardener and gourmet cook. Former UTA President Jack Woolf took some classes from Carl at Texas A & M during the 1940’s, and the two later worked together at General Dynamics and at UTA.
Sam Hamlett and his family left Virginia at the height of the Great Depression and came to Texas, where his mother opened a boarding house. After high school, Sam attended A & I College and the University Of Texas School Of Law in Austin. World War II interrupted Sam’s plan and by 1943 he was part of a U.S. Arm Air Corps crew in the Southwest Pacific. After the war, he returned to school, earning a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s in economics. In 1951, he married Ruth Greer and with her encouragement commenced doctoral studies in government. In 1956 he accepted a teaching position at Arlington State College. Son Steve joined the family in 1961 and five years later Sam completed his doctoral degree. He was named chairman of the newly created ASC Department of Government in 1967. Sam retired in 1984 but continued teaching and counseling students for another 10 years. He has served as Vice President and President of the Retiree’s Club, and his social life centers around his twice-weekly breakfast sessions with other retirees. Sam was named professor emeritus in 1987 and was inducted into the UTA Walk of Fame in 1996.
Barbara Hibbard, a native of Dodge City, Kansas, came to Arlington in 1961 with her husband Fred and son Stephen. An older son, Gordon remained at college in Kansas. She began work at Arlington State College in 1962, serving as secretary to J.D. Bryant and Cothburn O’Neal, both assistants to President Jack Woolf. The school became part of the University of Texas System during her tenure with the president’s staff. Barbara transferred to the Department of Electrical Engineering in 1964 and remained with the College of Engineering for 24 years, retiring in 1988 from the Department of Aerospace Engineering. Almost immediately, Barbara became actively involved with the UTA Retirees Club and eventually served as Vice President of Programs, and the President of the organization. From 1990-94 she and Fred co-edited the UTA Retirees Newsletter. Barbara is active in environmental issues through involvement in Arlington Conservation Council, the Texas and national chapters of Nature Conservancy and the River Legacy Foundation. She enjoys working in her garden and is a strong advocate of organic gardening. She also loves to travel and spend time with her family, all of whom live in the Metroplex except on granddaughter in Colorado.
Elwood Preiss watched UTA move from a small, local school called Arlington State College to a nationally and internationally recognized institution. He came to Arlington, in 1964-a short time after the school began awarding bachelor’s degrees, and remained until his retirement in 1998, serving as assistant to the president for almost 30 of those years. “In a sense, I saw the institution develop from its infancy to the true University it is today”, he said. Elwood also worked as UTA Registrar, Director of Admissions, Director of Continuing Education, Dean of Student Services and Director of the University’s Centennial Observance. He was the only secretary the Faculty/Undergraduate Assembly ever had from its establishment in 1964 until his retirement. Elwood, who earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from the University of Texas at Austin, served as Assistant Director of Admission and Assistant to the Dean of men at U.T. Austin before moving to Arlington. One of the founders of Leadership Arlington, Elwood has also long been active in the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, the Boy Scouts of America, Accent Arlington, the Kiwanis Club of Arlington and Arlington Human Service Planners. He is former member of the Board of Directors of Big Brothers and Sisters of Arlington and of the Arlington Independent School District Board of Trustees.
James Richards began his musical career as a choirboy in Harrisburg, PA. After winning numerous performance awards in orchestra, band and choir during her school years, his first “real” job was playing for renowned fan dancer Sally Rand. He continued his musical studies through college, earning a Bachelor’s Degree from West Chester University, a Master’s from Temple University and a Doctorate from The University of Southern California (USC). What Jim Learned, he also taught, working with band students in Pennsylvania public courses first at USC then at East Texas State University and UTA. He came to Arlington in 1975 to teach theory and oboe and serve as Music Department Chairman. He also served as acting Dean of the College of Liberal Arts before his retirement in 1985. In 1946, Jim married Dorothy Drake of Commerce. They have three sons: James Jr., Mark Alan, and Donald Christopher. Jim, who still performs on the oboe, has composed several works for choir, organ, woodwind quintet and trombone choir. He has served as President of the Texas Association of Music Schools and was a co-founder of the Arlington Fine Arts Council.