Baylor Vice Provost To Receive Texas Oral History Award

Aug. 25, 2000

by Lori Scott Fogleman

Dr. Thomas L. Charlton, vice provost for research and professor of history at Baylor University, will receive the first Lifetime Achievement Award from the Texas Oral History Association (TOHA) during a noon luncheon on Saturday, Aug. 26, in the Gregory Room in the Bill Daniel Student Center.

The award will be named the Thomas L. Charlton Lifetime Achievement Award in honor of his contributions to Texas oral history.

"I'm greatly honored by this award from my peers in Texas and in the field of oral history research, which has brought me a great deal of personal and professional satisfaction," Charlton said. "And I've been so proud that Baylor and the state of Texas have been leaders in this field."

A graduate of Baylor with master's and doctorate degrees from The University of Texas, Charlton is considered a true trailblazer of Texas oral history. He founded Baylor's renowned Institute for Oral History, now in its 30th year of service to Baylor and the community. During his 23-year tenure as the institute's director (1970-1993), the program earned a nationwide reputation for excellence in interviewing and the processing of volumes of oral history transcripts. He also established a summer research faculty program that provides stipends for Baylor faculty to conduct oral history research in topics related to their fields.

Charlton also co-founded the Texas Oral History Association in 1982. As interim president and later president, he guided TOHA through the formative years to become one of the largest regional oral history associations in the country. From 1985-1986, he directed a highly successful series of oral history workshops in the major cities of Texas as part of the Texas Sesquicentennial Celebration. Largely because of this project, the Texas Historical Commission honored him with the Texas Award for Historic Preservation for Outstanding Contributions to Oral History. On the national level, Charlton served as president of the Oral History Association from 1990-1991.

A writer as well as frequent presenter at conferences and meetings, Charlton's book, Oral History for Texans, published in two editions by the Texas Historical Commission, remains a classic handbook among both professional and amateur historians in the Southwest. He also has

been active in historical preservation as a member of the Waco Bicentennial Commission, McLennan County Historical Commission, Board of Review for Texas, National Register of Historic Places, Texas Sesquicentennial Commission for Waco where he served as chairman, and board of directors for Historic Waco Foundation Inc.

The Texas Oral History Association, founded in 1983 and hosted by Baylor University Institute for Oral History, serves as a network for oral historians in Texas and surrounding states. An affiliate of the Oral History Association, TOHA holds annual meetings in conjuction with the Texas State Historical Association and promotes professional standards for oral history research through informative workshops.

For more information, contact Lois Myers, lecturer and associate director of the Institute for Oral History, at (254) 710-3437 or visit www.baylor.edu/~Oral_History/ or the TOHA web site at www.baylor.edu/~TOHA/ .

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