At the closing event of the 26th Annual Heman Sweatt Symposium on Civil Rights on May 4, the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin awarded the 2012 Heman Marion Sweatt Legacy Award to Machree Garrett Gibson, the first African American female president of the Texas Exes.
The award is given annually by the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin as a way to honor the memory of Heman Sweatt, the first African American admitted to the university’s School of Law.
“Machree has given so much to The University of Texas at Austin, including service on the Commission of 125, the Law School Executive Committee, the UT Development Board and the Forty Acres Scholarship Foundation. As president of the Texas Exes she has helped spread the word of the importance of the university to the state’s economy and quality of life,” said Dr. Gregory Vincent, vice president for diversity and community engagement.
Gibson earned her BA in 1982 and her JD in 1991, having entered law school as a working mother with children ages 5 and 2. Gibson’s affiliation with the Texas legislature goes back to her freshman year in college when she took a secretarial job at the Capitol. She then worked for Senator Gonzalo Barrientos for nearly eight years, then as Governor Ann Richards’ legislative liaison with the Senate. When Richards appointed Ron Kirk Secretary of State, Kirk persuaded Gibson to serve as the assistant secretary of state. She is currently a principal in the Graydon Group.
Gibson is a charter member of the Town Lake Chapter of LINKS Inc., and has been involved with Jack & Jill Inc., the Junior League of Austin and the Austin Black Lawyers Association. She is a Texas Bar Foundation Life Fellow.