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College Holds Memorial for Dedicated Alumnus and Supporter William A. Brookshire

By: 

Audrey Grayson

More than 500 guests honored the memory and legacy of dedicated UH alumnus and long-time supporter William A. Brookshire at a memorial service held in his honor this summer. The Brookshire Memorial Service was held at the UH Student Center on May 19, nearly one month after Brookshire’s passing in April.

Former colleagues and classmates of Brookshire attended and spoke at the event along with countless UH staff, faculty and students whose lives were impacted by Brookshire’s generosity and support. Speakers at the memorial included UH chief development officer Russell Dunlavy, Brookshire’s daughter Lori Garrison and son Brook Brookshire, and his former business partners Wally Mauer and J.D. Slaughter.

Brookshire graduated from the University of Houston in 1957 with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. He went on to earn his master’s of science and Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Louisiana State University and later returned to Houston, where he founded S&B Engineers and Constructors in 1967 with his partner James Slaughter, Sr. At that time, the pair made up the entire roster of a company that would grow to employ 7,500 people around the world.

Brookshire’s legacy at the UH Cullen College of Engineering includes a recent donation of $1 million to the Cullen College of Engineering to create the William A. Brookshire Teaching Excellence Award Endowment. The annual distributed income honors faculty members in the Cullen College “who demonstrate an unwavering commitment to exemplifying the highest levels of teaching excellence inside the classroom.”

Brookshire also founded two scholarships to help ease financial burdens of working students while recognizing their continued dedication to their engineering education. Students who qualify for the William A. Brookshire Scholarship take a full course load (12 hours) and work at least 20 hours a week. Another of his endowments, the William A. Brookshire IMPACT Scholarship is for students who are working, taking a full course load and paying for college on their own with no outside financial support.

In 2016, the lives of 85 UH Engineering undergraduate students changed drastically when they received scholarships donated by Brookshire’s incredible largesse. On Feb. 9, the students had the opportunity to meet and thank the man who helped fund their education and made such a lasting impact in their lives at the annual Brookshire Scholarship Luncheon held at the UH Hilton.

Watch the William A. Brookshire memorial video here and view photos from the event here

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