First Family of Baylor Award To Be Presented To The Wolf-Sims Family

Oct. 9, 2008

Contact: Judy Prather, Baylor Alumni Association, (254) 710-6431

Four generations of the Wolf-Sims family have attended Baylor University, and the family will be honored Oct. 10 with the 2008 First Family of Baylor Award given by the Baylor Alumni Association.

The award will be presented during the After Dark performance in Waco Hall during Parents Weekend, with a reception following at the Hughes-Dillard Alumni Center.

The first member of the Wolf-Sims family to attend the university was Ralph Wolf, a Baylor track star and 1921 graduate. Wolf was the head coach of the basketball team when the "Immortal Ten" tragedy occurred in 1927, taking the lives of several members of his team.

Wolf survived the horrific bus-train collision and went on to serve as Baylor's athletic director, Waco's mayor and the executive vice president of the Baylor Stadium Corp. that oversaw the construction of the current football stadium in the 1950s. Other members of the first generation were Ralph's wife, Doris Sewell Wolf; Henry and Clara Spearman Wolf; and Wraymond and Thelma Newsom Sims.

Making up the second generation were Jack and Mary Helen Wolf Van Zandt, William Olds, Margaret Wolf Sims Bates, William G. Sims, Beverly Wolf Russell, Beth Sims McDaniel and Ginny Sims Griffith.

Eleven third-generation members of the family received Baylor degrees. They include Henry and Suzanne Van Zandt Durham, Janet Van Zandt Bass, Katherine Van Zandt Howard, William H. and Lisa Hendricks Sims, Sarah Sims Jackson, Cynthia Sims Stratton Cutrer, Charles E. Russell Jr. and Eileen Kelly Russell, and Candace Russell La Forge.

The tradition continued with eight fourth-generation members of the family: John K. and Margaret Durham Burk, Julie Durham Zavodny, Lauren Howard, Mark and Lauren Sims Reitmeier, Christopher A. Stratton and W. Michael Sims.

"Baylor was in our blood," says Margaret Wolf Sims Bates. "We never thought of going anyplace else. And we are very honored to have been chosen. It will be a great time for the family to get together, as well as enjoy the honor of this award."

For more information about this or the other awards given by the Baylor Alumni Association, call (254) 710-1121 or go to the association's website,

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