The University of Texas at Austin School of Information has received a $2.3 million gift from the estate of Judge William Wayne and Margaret Kilgarlin. The funds will support the iSchool’s areas of conservation and preservation and provide $1.38 million for student support.
To honor the Kilgarlins and their contribution to the iSchool, Dean and Professor Andrew Dillon announced the school is naming its paper conservation lab The William and Margaret Kilgarlin Information Preservation Lab. The lab will be housed in the iSchool at 1616 Guadalupe Street and will serve as a focal point for extended teaching in modern information preservation and conservation.
“This is the largest gift we’ve received from an individual donor and provides us with a tremendous opportunity to advance our research and teaching,” Dean Dillon said.
Judge Kilgarlin died in 2012 at the age of 79. He is buried in the Texas State Cemetery.
The son of a refinery worker from Houston, Judge Kilgarlin was a member of the Texas House of Representatives in the late 1950s. He later became a district judge in Harris County. From 1982 to 1988, Judge Kilgarlin served as a justice of the Texas Supreme Court, where his colleagues described him as warm, fiercely intelligent, and devoted to defending the rights of the underprivileged.
“Bill Kilgarlin was a Texas legal legend,” said former Chief Justice Thomas R. Phillips, according to an obituary released by the court. “He had a passion for fairness, and his opinions as a judge and his briefs as a lawyer were skillfully crafted in memorable and persuasive prose.”