The Norman Transcript


April 16, 2013

OU to give honorary degrees



Brackett and her husband have been supporters of the OU School of Dance for several years. They have contributed to multiple programs including the Enrichment Fund, the Indian Ballerina Scholarship Fund and the Ballet Russe Archives. They established a Distinguished Visiting Artist Chair in 2005.

As director of Union Activities at OU in the 1960s, Crawford enhanced and nurtured countless students’ learning through campus activities at home and abroad. She led a student group on a 15-country tour of Europe that included the first OU student trip to Russia. She also oversaw University Scandals productions as well as other university-sponsored concerts.

Crawford was one of the first students to study higher education administration at OU, earning her master’s degree in that field in 1960.

For her support of the University College Student Learning Center, a room was named in her and her husband’s honor in 2009 in the Lissa and Cy Wagner Hall.

Thompson was appointed U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Oklahoma in 1975 at age 40, making him one of the youngest federal judges in the nation. During his 32 years as a federal judge, he presided over a variety of civil and criminal cases, some with national implications. As chief judge of the court, the Western District Court was recognized nationally as one of the most efficient federal courts in the nation.

An Oklahoma City native, Thompson is the grandson of Dr. William Bennett Bizzell, OU’s fifth president. Thompson graduated from OU with a degree in business administration in 1956 and a law degree in 1961. He served two terms, from 1966 to 1970, in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. He served 27 years in the U.S. Air Force, active and reserve.      

Thompson was elected president of the U.S. District Judges Association of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and named the 10th Circuit’s district judge representative to the Judicial Conference of the United States.

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