BPE Honorary Alumnus

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Exceptional Award for an Honorary Alumnus – UT at Austin President Bill Powers


President Powers’ Bio

William “Bill” Powers Jr. has been president of The University of Texas at Austin since 2006 and is the second-longest-serving president in the university’s history. His goal of making UT the best public research university in America has been supported by a sustained emphasis on undergraduate education, including the strengthening of a core curriculum and the inauguration of a School of Undergraduate Studies. He has served as chair of the Association of American Universities.

President Powers is one of the nation’s leading scholars in personal injury and product liability. He joined the University’s law school faculty in 1977 and went on to become dean of the school.

In 1997, the university named him to its Academy of Distinguished Teachers. He is a University Distinguished Teaching Professor and holds the Hines H. Baker and Thelma Kelley Baker Chair in Law. He continues to teach a freshman Signature Course in philosophy.

A native of Los Angeles, he received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. Following graduation he joined the U.S. Navy and was stationed on Bahrain in the Persian Gulf. He attended Harvard Law School, where he became managing editor of the Harvard Law Review.

In 2001, he chaired a special investigation committee that examined the financial transactions of Enron Corp. The resulting report, known as The Powers Report, and his subsequent testimony before Congress gained national recognition.

He is the 28th president of The University of Texas at Austin.

About the Award

The Exceptional Award for Honorary Alumnus is given to an individual who is not a graduate of Leadership Austin. The selection is made on the basis of lifetime achievement of statesmanship and community service—which epitomizes the highest standards of integrity and servant leadership—while demonstrating a commitment to the core values of Leadership Austin: Community Trusteeship, Inclusiveness, Collaborative Decision-Making, and Personal Responsibility.