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Faubus gave wings to ACU's business program

One of Abilene Christian University’s legendary professors, Dr. A. Overton Faubus, died Sunday at his home in Abilene at age 96. Faubus, whose influence helped bring ACU’s business department to College of Business Administration (COBA) status and international accreditation, is often recalled by former students as “the best professor I ever had.”
He was remembered by former student Ron Willingham (’54) in a Second Glance essay titled “He Taught Me More” in ACU Today’s Winter 2005 issue. Willingham, an author and pioneer in training and human development technology, quotes J. McDonald “Don” Williams (’64), another of Faubus’ former students, who said his mentor had “that rare balance between demanding high student performance and yet exhibiting personal interest and attention. He was always a gentleman and professional on the one hand and an approachable and personally warm mentor on the other.”
I knew Faubus more as COBA’s elder statesman, 20 years after his retirement as professor emeritus of accounting. Many Tuesday mornings in 2005, he came to our office as a member of the Centennial Photography Archivists Team, helping I.D. and date historical photographs in our collection. Despite the casual nature of his volunteer work in our P.R. back-shop environment, he often dressed as impeccably as he did during his 30-plus years in the classroom: a tailored suit, white dress shirt and handkerchief, tie with diamond stick pin, and his ever-present Stetson. Even at age 91, this prince of a fellow still oozed class and dignity.
A memorial service will be held in Hillcrest Church of Christ at 11 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 5. Read more about Faubus’ life and influence here.