The gift will support the research activities and to renovate the Engineering and Materials Research Center.
Texas Tech University System officials announced a gift of $7.5 million from the J. F Maddox Foundation Thursday (May 14). The gift will support the research activities of the Jack Maddox and Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chairs and will be used by Texas Tech University to renovate the Engineering and Materials Research Center.
In recognition of the gift and the continuing and valued relationship between the Maddox family and Texas Tech University, the Engineering and Materials Research Center building will be named the Maddox Engineering Research Center.
The Facilities Committee of the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents accepted the gift and approved the naming in keeping with the system's policies on major gifts.
“I would like to say thank you to the J. F Maddox Foundation, which has a longstanding tradition of sustained philanthropy that has provided for excellence at Texas Tech University,” said Robert Duncan, chancellor of the Texas Tech University System. “We are grateful for their legacy of generosity and commitment to higher education. I also want to congratulate Dean Al Sacco, President Duane Nellis and the entire Institutional Advancement team for their work in securing this significant and important gift.”
Located in Hobbs, N.M., the J. F Maddox Foundation's primary commitment is to the development of grants benefiting residents of southeastern New Mexico with a history of supporting education and Texas Tech University.
“The J. F Maddox Foundation and the Maddox family are excited to expand their support of the Maddox chairs in the Whitacre College of Engineering,” said Jim Maddox, president of the J. F Maddox Foundation. “Our founder, Jack Maddox, was proud of Texas Tech University and the opportunities his degree afforded him. His brother, Donovan Maddox, served as president of the foundation following Jack's death, and his leadership contributed significantly to the foundation's growth.
“Today our family is proud to continue their legacies by supporting a research facility that will help ensure Texas Tech continues to contribute to the body of engineering research that drives discoveries and economic development for this entire region.”
Located on Memorial Circle at the entrance to the Engineering Key, the planned research facility will occupy the former Media and Communication building, which has been vacant since 2012 when the College of Media & Communication moved to its current location.
Transforming the building's interior while preserving the traditional Spanish Renaissance exterior, plans for the new facility include configurable lab spaces with bright, modern interiors that can adapt to evolving research needs. Integrated technology will support the visualization and simulation needs of the researchers while enabling them to collaborate with colleagues across campus or around the world.
“The Maddox Foundation's support of the Whitacre College of Engineering and other areas on campus have yielded invaluable educational opportunities and an enhanced research environment for our students,” said M. Duane Nellis, Texas Tech University president. “We thank the foundation for its continued support and years of dedication and commitment to Texas Tech University.”
Adding valuable and much-needed research capacity, the building will be a significant addition to the campus as Texas Tech grows its reputation as a national research university. The gift is eligible for state matching funds through the Texas Research Incentive Program (TRIP).
When completed, the Maddox Engineering Research Center will house research labs and facilities for the Jack Maddox and Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chairs and their research teams in the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering.
“The Maddox Engineering Research Center will be the premier research facility in our college and an incredible resource for our students and faculty,” said Al Sacco Jr., dean of the Whitacre College of Engineering. “Today's gift builds on the J. F Maddox Foundation's tradition of supporting world-class faculty at Texas Tech University by providing the place where our researchers and their teams will make the next generation of engineering discoveries.”
The Jack Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair is named for J. F “Jack” Maddox who founded the organization together with his wife Mabel. Jack graduated from Texas Tech University with a bachelor's degree in Textile Engineering in 1929. The chair holder is Chau-Chyun Chen, a professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and member of the National Academy of Engineering. His research focuses on using computational and data-enabled science and engineering to find solutions to global energy demands.
The Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair is named for Donovan Maddox, Jack's brother and former president of the J. F Maddox Foundation, who also graduated from Texas Tech University with a bachelor's degree in Textile Engineering in 1934. The chair holder is Danny Reible, a professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Construction Engineering and member of the National Academy of Engineering. Reible's research focuses on enhancing industrial water use, water quality and sustainability.
The university has nearly completed the process of gutting the building and removing asbestos in preparation for the renovations, which are scheduled to begin this fall. Fundraising for the planned $29.2 million renovation project is ongoing.