P.G. “Buck” Eckels ’52 and Sandra Eckels of Houston have committed an estate gift valued at $700,000 to establish a professorship at Mays. The Sandra and P.G. “Buck” Eckels ’52 Endowed Professorship funds the teaching, research, service and professional development activities of a Mays faculty member.

“Our faculty are our greatest resource,” said Dean Strawser. “The Eckels’ most generous gift will allow us to recruit and retain the very best minds to Mays Business School. Coupled with the university’s faculty reinvestment program, endowed professorships provide our very best faculty with the environment needed to educate the next generation of business leaders.”

Eckels graduated with a BBA in 1952 before fighting as a platoon leader in the 7th Infantry Division in Korea. He negotiated oil leases after the war as a land man for oil and gas businesses in Corpus Christi before starting his career as a title underwriter. In 1974, he bought Lawyers Title Insurance in Houston, retiring 30 years later as president, chair and sole stockholder. He and his wife Sandra, a University of Texas graduate and former teacher, have been married for 30 years.

“The business school is where I started, and it’s been good to me,” Eckels says. “We’ve been very lucky to be able to give back.”

Categories: Donors Corner, Faculty, Former Students

L.C. “Chaz” Neely, Jr. ’62 of San Antonio has committed $1 million to endow the Trisha and L.C. “Chaz” Neely, Jr. ’62 Endowed Chair in Business. The gift will support the teaching, research, service and professional development of a faculty member at Mays Business School.

“The Neelys’ most generous commitment will allow us to continue to build on our outstanding faculty,” said Dean Jerry Strawser. “Faculty are truly the lifeblood of our school; in addition to their research, it is our faculty who create the outstanding learning environment that benefits our students.”

Neely was the first person in his family to attend college, graduating from A&M with a marketing degree in 1962. In 1979, after working for a family business and for Atlantic Richfield, Neely founded San Antonio Steel Company. He now serves as CEO of what has become one of the largest business-to-business steel and fencing companies in the southwest. Chaz and his wife Trisha have been married for more than 40 years. They have three Aggie children and three grandchildren. They have long been supporters of Mays, most recently giving $150,000 in 2003 to establish a matching Heep Foundation graduate fellowship.

“The dean wants to have Mays Business School in the top 10 and I’d like to help him get there,” Neely said. “I’ve been blessed with doing well in business and I want to help Mays find even more success.”

Categories: Donors Corner, Faculty, Former Students