Alumni create professorship, host dinner to honor John Only Greer

John Only Greer

John Only Greer

June 4 was an evening of stories and celebration as former students, colleagues and friends toasted retiring Texas A&M architecture professor John Only Greer  '55.

Greer, a former department head, interim dean, executive associate dean, as well as mentor to generations of Aggie architects, retired in May after 49 years on the Texas A&M faculty.

Jim Snyder '78 chaired the June 4 celebration of Greer’s stellar career, as well as a fundraising effort to create the John Only Greer Architectural Heritage Professorship. Guest speakers honoring Greer included Debbie Gray ‘80; Teresa Hurd ’82; Kirby Keahey ’56; David Lancaster, senior manager of advocacy, Texas Society of Architects; Helene Little ‘80; Craig Reynolds ‘77; Tony Schirripa ’73 and Jim Singleton ’66.

"John Only has been very special to the personal and professional lives of so many generations of Aggie architects," said Snyder, chairman and CEO of Odell in Richmond, Va. "This is our way of recognizing his lifelong passion in preparing architects to practice architecture and saying 'thank you John Only.'"

In addition to teaching A&M's professional practice courses for many years, Greer has been a leader of, and an advocate for, the profession in Texas. He played a major role in getting regulation of practice added to the Texas Architects Registration Law. He was elected president of The Texas Society of Architects and national director of the American Institute of Architects. He received the highest honor awarded by TSA, the Llewellyn W. Pitts Award.

Greer, an Outstanding Alumnus of the Texas A&M College of Architecture, has also been the longtime holder of the Wallie E. Scott Endowed Professorship of Architectural Practice and Management at Texas A&M. While professional practice is his first love, the new professorship will reflect Greer's dedication to maintaining the heritage and archives of the College of Architecture, a secondary passion of Professor Greer's for a number of years.

"John Only has been such a part of the history of the College of Architecture, that we thought it fitting that the John Only Greer Architectural Heritage Professorship be applied to recognizing and promoting that history," said Snyder.

The goal of the fundraising campaign is $150,000.

Those interested in donating to the John Only Greer Architectural Heritage Professorship should contact Larry Zuber of the Texas A&M Foundation at or by calling him at (979-845-0939). Donations can also be made securely online at the Texas A&M Foundation website.

posted April 29, 2011