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Liberal Arts Says Farewell to Two Longtime Friends

College pays tribute to Lowell Lebermann and Creekmore Fath

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posted: Wednesday July 15, 2009

Lowell Lebermann, renowned Austin businessman, philanthropist and longtime friend of the College of Liberal Arts, died July 9 at the age of 70.

Lebermann (Plan II Honors, '62) served as an Austin City Council Member in the 1970s, and was active in state Democratic politics. He was highly vocal on transportation issues and was named vice chairman of the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority in 2003. In recent years he served on numerous civic and nonprofit boards.

A former owner of a car dealership, Lebermann had owned Centex Beverage since 1981.

He chaired the university's 1997 Presidential Search Committee. He also served on the University of Texas System Board of Regents from 1993 to 1999, and on the board of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Research Center before it became a unit of the university. And in 2005 he served on the University of Texas System Presidential Library Special Advisory Committee that led work on a proposal for George W. Bush's library. As a student, he served as student body president in 1961-1962 and was also a member of the Friar Society.

Lebermann also mentored students and provided scholarships, such as the Texas Excellence Scholars, to help young scholars get a head start on their dreams.

According to many who knew and worked with him through the years, Lebermann was one of the Austin's most compassionate, caring and concerned citizens. Among his many awards, Lebermann earned the Pro Bene Meritis Award from the College of Liberal Arts in 1985, and was named "Austinite of the Year" by the Austin Chamber of Commerce in 2003. He was also inducted into the Texas Business Hall of Fame in 2004.

Creekmore Fath, Austin lawyer, collector and activist, died June 25 at the age of 93.

Fath (Economics/Law, '35) and his late wife, Adele Hay Fath, were longtime supporters of the College of Liberal Arts, among many other philanthropic endeavors.

Fath began his career as a lawyer in 1939 and soon entered state and national politics, becoming a Democratic Party activist during the New Deal.

During World War II, he served in the U.S. Army and worked as an aide to President Franklin Roosevelt. After the war, he was secretary-treasurer of the Democratic Party of Texas and worked under U.S. House Speaker Sam Rayburn and future President Lyndon B. Johnson. Throughout his lifetime, Fath was a prominent Democratic fundraiser and a powerful influence on the Democratic National Committee.

In addition to his political and legal contributions, Fath was a noted collector of books. With more than 40,000 items in his personal library, he amassed an impressive collection of lithographs by American artist Thomas Hart Benton, which was exhibited at several museums and galleries.

Contact:
Jessica Sinn
Office of Public Affairs
512-471-2404
sinnjessica@austin.utexas.edu

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