The Maverick Match

Giving program leverages natural gas royalties

MaxwellMaxwell Scarlett came to UT Arlington to earn a degree. That he broke barriers was incidental, more a matter of circumstance than intent. He’s prouder of being an alumnus than he is of being the University’s first African-American graduate.

“Not a day goes by that I don’t appreciate the priceless foundation in life that I received at UT Arlington,” says

Dr. Scarlett, who earned his bachelor’s degree in biology in 1966. “Any service or time or money I give back to this institution is just a token of my gratitude.”

He and his wife, Vivian, recently established the Biology Department’s first endowed professorship, a gift enhanced by UT Arlington’s Maverick Match program. The Maverick Match uses royalty revenues from natural gas drilling on campus to match donations toward new endowments or add to certain existing funds.

The program matches all endowment gifts of $25,000 or more. For the remainder of the 2009 calendar year, matching funds also will be available for existing endowments currently under $25,000, provided they bring the fund total to at least $25,000. Endowments support students, faculty positions and programs in all of the University’s colleges and schools.

A Fort Worth native, Scarlett is president and chief executive officer of Lekar Emergency Medical Associates in Killeen. He earned his medical degree in 1971 from the Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, D.C. He has received UT Arlington’s Distinguished Alumni Award, Outstanding African-American Alumni Award and Multicultural Services Trailblazer Award.

Scarlett grew up in a family of educators. His mother was a teacher, as were both of her grandparents. His maternal great-grandfather was a professor of chemistry and physics at Prairie View A&M University in the 1890s. So as a youngster in the Stop Six neighborhood of Fort Worth, Scarlett considered it a given that he would attend college.

He credits his mother, Evelyn Guinn Scarlett, for being a lifetime inspiration. She graduated from high school at age 15 and completed her bachelor’s degree at Prairie View A&M in four years. She went on to earn a master’s degree from North Texas State (now the University of North Texas) and taught in Fort Worth public schools for many years.

Vivian Scarlett is a registered nurse who graduated with honors from Central Texas College (now part of Tarleton State University). She has received the Collegiate All-American Scholars Award, National Collegiate Nursing Award and All-American Scholar At-Large Division Award from the United States Achievement Academy. She recently celebrated her 10-year anniversary at Rollins Brook Community Hospital in Lampasas.

Speaking at the College of Science commencement ceremony in May, her husband told the Class of 2009 that UT Arlington has provided a permanent academic, social and cultural foundation.

“Let’s not forget it,” he said. “Let’s always remember this is our home.”

Maxwell Scarlett certainly does.

Online: www.uta.edu/giving

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