Preston M. Geren Jr. of Fort Worth, a Texas A&M College of Architecture Outstanding Alumnus, was one of four former students to be named 2007 Distinguished Alumni of Texas A&M University. The other 2007 honorees are Raul B. Fernandez of San Antonio, Roderick D. Stepp, also from Fort Worth, and Edwin J. Kyle, a member of the Class of 1899 who was honored posthumously.
The Distinguished Alumnus Award is presented annually by the university and The Association of Former Students.
“Each of these former students is an exemplary role model for all Aggies,” said Porter S. Garner III, executive director of The Association of Former Students and a member of the class of 1979. “They are indeed distinguished in their professions, and without question, in their dedication and support for Texas A&M and The Association of Former Students. These four gentlemen are richly deserving of the highest honor bestowed upon a former student of Texas A&M University.”
Established in 1962, the Distinguished Alumnus Award is the highest honor bestowed upon a former student of Texas A&M University. The award recognizes outstanding Aggies who have made significant contributions in their professions, to their alma mater and to their local communities.
Each of the three living recipients learned of their honor when university and Association representatives, a Ross Volunteer, the Mascot Corporal and university mascot, Reveille VII, surprised them at their places of business and other locations to make the special announcement.
Preston M. Geren, Jr., Class of 1945, entered Texas A&M University in the fall of 1941 to study architectural engineering and in 1943 left to enter the U.S. Army. Upon release from duty in 1945, the degree he was preparing for was no longer offered at Texas A&M, therefore he completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Architecture in 1947 at Georgia Tech and Texas A&M made special dispensation for Geren to remain a member of the Class of 1945. He was a member of the Corps of Cadets and a Letterman in swimming.
Geren began his career as a registered architect and engineer in 1947 when he joined the firm with his father, Preston M. Geren, Sr., which was established in 1934. The firm became a leading architectural force in Fort Worth and the state of Texas. After his father’s death in 1969, Geren became the sole owner of Geren Associates Architects and Engineers and was recognized as one of the 25 largest architectural firms in the nation at the time. Among Geren’s designs is the Clayton W. Williams, Jr. Alumni Center on the Texas A&M University campus.
Geren has generously volunteered his time to Texas A&M University as president and member of the Executive Committee of the 12th Man Foundation and member of the Chancellor’s Advisory Council and President’s Advisory Council. He also served on the Advisory Council to the Corps of Cadets and on the Advisory Council of the School of Architecture and Environmental Design. Texas A&M’s School of Architecture honored Geren with the Outstanding Alumni Award in 1998. Born in Fort Worth, Geren and his wife, Colleen, have three sons, Charles, Preston and Toby and two daughters, Eva and Chandra and 11 grandchildren.
Bios of the other three 2007 Distinguished Alumni of Texas A&M Award recipients are available at The Association of Former Students Web site:
The Association of Former Students will further honor the award recipients in formal events and ceremonies throughout the year. Recipients will be hosted for dinner by Interim President Dr. Ed Davis and will be recognized during the May commencement ceremonies. In addition, The Association will honor all recipients of this award during its annual Distinguished Alumni Gala and at the Texas A&M vs. Oklahoma State football game in October.
Related stories on Geren, his family and their contributions to architecture and architectural education at Texas A&M University are available in the online edition of the College of Architecture’s archone. newsletter:
Geren Auditorium honors “First Family” of Texas A&M Architecture
Geren’s grandfather, F.E. Giesecke, named Distinguished Alumni
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Preston Geren Jr., Distinguished Alumni of Texas A&M University