College of Engineering Receives Endowment to Recruit Researchers

J.F Maddox Foundation donates $7.5 million; creates Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair.

Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair

President Guy Bailey and Chancellor Kent Hance stand with Jim Maddox and Don Maddox, sons of Donovan Maddox.

A $7.5 million gift announced Jan. 16 from the J. F Maddox Foundation to create the Donovan Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair, gives Texas Tech University an advantage in its goal of leading the nation in energy solutions.

The new chair, in tribute and memory of Donovan Maddox, honors his life-long connection and commitment to Texas Tech University. The endowment, along with the existing Jack Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair, will be used to recruit two nationally recognized researchers, initially in energy-related fields.

“The Whitacre College of Engineering has an unprecedented opportunity to attract excellent individuals with the Maddox Chairs, to establish strong research capabilities, enhance teaching and to gain exceptional national visibility with these candidates,” said President Guy Bailey.

Chancellor Kent Hance thanked the Maddox Foundation for its gift and continued support of the university.

“We appreciate all that the Maddox Foundation has done for Texas Tech. Gifts like this allow us to continue our growth and maintain our leadership position in engineering research and development.”

With each Maddox chairholder bringing teaching and research capabilities in distinctive fields related to energy, the two Maddox Chair appointees could have a tremendous impact on the university’s national reputation, while also attracting additional faculty members who will establish distinct, but complementary, areas of research excellence, said Pam Eibeck, dean of engineering.

“Having two large endowed chairs like the Maddox Chairs available at once is extraordinary, and the individuals that we attract at this time will enable us to position ourselves as a key player in providing energy solutions,” said Eibeck.

The Maddox Legacy

Jack and Donovan Maddox both majored in Textile Engineering, both served as Student Government Association presidents, and were recognized as Distinguished Engineers and as Distinguished Alumni.

Donovan, younger brother of Jack Maddox, graduated in 1934 and served as Student Government Association president in 1931-32. He was named a Distinguished Engineer in 1971 and a Distinguished Alumnus in 1972. Donovan was selected by the Alumni Association to receive the Lauro F. Cavazos Award in 1988. Donovan, who died in 1993, had a long and successful career as a textile executive, primarily in Gastonia, N.C. He succeeded Jack as chairman and CEO of New Mexico Electric Service Co. and related entities in Hobbs, N.M. in 1978.

Jack and Mabel Maddox established the J. F Maddox Foundation in 1963 to serve the citizens of southeastern New Mexico. Donovan served as president of the J. F Maddox Foundation from Jack’s death in 1978 until 1990. Additionally, Donovan made certain that the first major grant by the Maddox Foundation after the settlement of Jack’s estate in the early 1980s be made to create the Jack Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair, in honor of Jack. The J. F Maddox Foundation, a nonprofit corporation based in Hobbs, is governed by a board of directors primarily composed of Donovan Maddox’s two sons, Don and Jim, and their children.

Photo Gallery

Photos By Artie Limmer and Joey Hernandez



Jim Maddox

President Guy Bailey

Chancellor Kent Hance


The Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering has educated engineers to meet the technological needs of Texas, the nation and the world since 1925.

Approximately 3,400 undergraduate and 600 graduate students pursue bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees offered through eight academic departments: civil and environmental, chemical, computer science, electrical and computer, engineering technology, industrial, mechanical, and petroleum.

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