January 2016 Edition



Gary Shelton Memorial

It is with a heavy heart that we share the sad news of former staff member Gary Shelton’s passing. Gary passed away on December 17th, 2015. Gary worked at The University of Texas for 35 years, and spent 28 of those years as Director of Operations at the Texas Union.

Gary Shelton in the Texas Union

Born in Dallas, Gary moved to Austin to attend the University, completeing his Bachelor's degree from Natural Sciences in 1960. He joined the Texas Union staff in 1976 and became the Assistant Director of Operations. His tenure included major initiatives such as: developing operational guidelines and bid procedures for the Union renovation in 1975; developing guidelines and procedures for the creation of the MicroCenter; serving as an advisor to the multi-year award-winning student management committee; and being administratively responsible for the department of Building Services.

Gary had a passion for the Texas Union as a facility and for its mission of providing quality programming and leadership opportunities for students. He knew every detail of the Union and gave a grand tour of each corner of the building which has been recorded and is lovingly called the "Gary Shelton Tour." When asked what his favorite memory of his time at the Union, he would respond that the daily interface he had with the students as an advisor and mentor had the most lasting impression. His tireless dedication earned him many accolades including the presitigious Arno Notwotny Medal, a resolution from the Texas House of Representatives, and the admiration of generations of Longhorns.    

His time with us is best summarized in the resolution that was passed from the House of Representatives. You can read the text of that resolution HERE. We speak for all when we say he will truly be missed. 


University Unions Annual Fund Campaign

Help support our students through the first University Unions Annual Giving Campaign! Private support is vital for the Unions to continue to provide quality programming and leadership opportunities for all UT students. This year all funds will go to support the E+E Legacy Lounge Project. Click here for more information on this project and to give online today!


Student Programming off to a great start! 


Our student programming board, Campus Events + Entertainment, is off to a great start this year. They hosted 70 events during the 2015 fall semester (up from 56 in the fall of 2014) with a total attendance of 19,213 for the semester. The students are actively working to create new and unique ideas to reach all students in various areas of our facilities. New programs include: "Make-it Take-it", a lunch time event in the Texas Union Presidential Lobby where students can create or craft items to take with them; Events on the Patio, a series that features musicians or other acts during the evening hours on the Texas Union East Patio; and "Student Stories", a collaboration with the Daily Texan that features an open mic where students can perform, speak, or share things that impact them. 

This year the Creative Arts & Theater committee also produced and preformed the 35th annual Madrigal dinner to a sold out crowd each evening, a tradition that is a must-see for all alumni! Stay tuned to see what new and creative events our students have coming for the spring!

Name our Newsletter!

Name our Newsletter! We have a goal to bring you news monthly this year through this online newsletter. In the past, the Union published a print newsletter called the State of the Union on an annual basis. Today, we have grown well beyond one facility and this name doesn’t fully reflect the University Unions as a whole. We would love to hear your ideas for a new name for a monthly newsletter! Click HERE to submit your idea and reasons why it would be the best choice!