Dudley Lynch - Master's: Mass Communications, 1967
In the fall of 1965, my wife and I moved to one of the world’s most unusual communities: Los Alamos. As a press officer, one of my first assignments was to help unveil surviving prototypes of the world’s first atomic weapons. Nevertheless, just nine months later, a second grand adventure beckoned so strongly it was not to be denied. We packed up and moved to Austin.
I thought I wanted to teach. But in the magical year spent at UT, new skills and new interests materialized. I wrote a master’s thesis of more than 300 pages and crafted and saw published a small historical book supervised by Joe B. Frantz. I also discovered a new passion for writing books.
Within four years, I’d completed Tornado, Texas Demon in the Wind. Not until years later did I learn that the work is considered by some weather physicists and storm chasers as the best account of tornado disaster ever written. Then came a young adult biography of LBJ, The President from Texas and an account of the infamous political boss, George B. Parr. The most successful of my works is called Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World (written with a colleague). Just the other day, a management professor called it “one of the best business books ever written.” In all, 14 of my books have been published, and I’ve just begun another.
And it is all because I was fortunate enough to be taken by a graduate faculty willing to deal with our small-town idiosyncrasies and knowledge gaps and guide us through the most amazing transition of our young lives. Call it Lucy’s wardrobe or our own personal Khyber Pass, but it was a passage and coming of age that changed our lives. And there have been so many of us. What powerful instruments for good this graduate school and this university and this city called Austin have been!