Lubbock developer to receive honorary degree at Wayland commencement

April 29, 2010

PLAINVIEW – Lubbock businessman and developer Delbert McDougal will be awarded an honorary Bachelor of Letters degree from Wayland Baptist University at the Plainview campus commencement ceremony set for 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 8, in Hutcherson Center.

The ceremony will also include recognition of Dr. Patricia Herman as emeritus professor of education, having retired in 2009 after 16 years of service to the university in the School of Education. Russell Daniel, a graduating senior from Hillsboro, will present the student address in the ceremony, and Dr. Paul Armes, president, will give a brief charge to the students and recognize the highest ranking graduates. A total of 142 students are set to receive diplomas during the ceremony, including bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

McDougal has served on Wayland’s Board of Trustees for 14 years, including service as chairman of the board and chairman of the property management committee. His contributions to the university include not only his own financial support but also his wise counsel about property and facility matters. He was instrumental in negotiating the Wayland Plaza purchase in Lubbock and the new campus location on North Quaker Avenue and has aided in other facility decisions throughout the system. His generous gift to the Laney Activities Center resulted in shared naming of the walking track above the gymnasium with Chancellor Emeritus Dr. Wallace Davis.

McDougal worked his way up through the General Electric Company for 25 years before starting over with his own housing business based in Lubbock. In 1982, he started the McDougal Companies with a $10,000 loan and a strong work ethic. Today, the McDougal Companies own or manage more than four thousand apartments in seven Texas cities. His companies have developed or built more than $400 million in commercial and residential property, and his realty company has listed or sold more than $1.5 billion in homes and commercial property.

Over the past decade, one of McDougal’s passions has been revitalizing the northwest side of Lubbock, known as North Overton, through the demolition of substandard housing and structures and the building of new housing structures and a strip center known as Overton Park. Demolition began in 2002 and the most recent addition, the Overton Hotel and Conference Center, was opened in 2009.

A book about McDougal was released in 2007, Failure Is Not An Option: Delbert McDougal: A Developer's Unconventional Wisdom, written by Tony Privett. City Bank, which purchased a corner lot for a new branch in the center of Overton Park, had a life-size bronze statue erected of the McDougals overlooking the newly developed area of Lubbock.

McDougal and wife Carolyn, who has been at Delbert’s side as an active partner throughout the company’s history, have two sons, Marc and Mike.