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Hallettsville-based foundation makes $25,000 donation to UHV for scholarships

Jan. 29, 2011 at 9:05 p.m.
Updated Jan. 28, 2011 at 7:29 p.m.

WHERE IT CAME FROMThe foundation's namesake, Raymond Dickson, was born an only child in 1886 in Wharton County. Dickson was raised by his aunt and uncle in the Shiner/Gonzales area after becoming an orphan at age 8. He graduated from the University of Texas Law School in 1909 and practiced law in Houston until World War I, when he became a major in the 5th Infantry Division. After his return from the war, he was in the cotton, oil and cattle businesses.

He died in 1956, leaving the bulk of his estate to be operated as a private foundation by several of his good friends, including attorneys Alton and William Allen, of Hallettsville, for charitable and educational purposes.

Alton Allen died in 1976, and William Allen in 1989, leaving much of the Allen estate to a nephew, Wilbur Baber. The understanding was Baber would pass a good portion of his estate to the foundation, as well.

When Baber died in 2005, the foundation trustees voted to change the name of the foundation to the Dickson-Allen Foundation, to recognize the significant contributions of the late Allen brothers and Baber.

A Hallettsville foundation donated $25,000 to assist area students attend the University of Houston-Victoria.

The Dickson-Allen Foundation, established in 1961, made the donation to assist students from Lavaca, Wharton and Gonzales counties.

The private foundation makes donations for a wide range of interests, including educational programs, medical research and facilities. The donation will assist eligible students from the three counties where the foundation is most active. Students from those counties represented nearly 5 percent of UHV's total fall 2010 enrollment.

"We are pleased to help rural students from our area take advantage of the educational opportunities at UHV," foundation trustee J.L. Allen said. "The university is a regional asset that helps raise the education level throughout the Coastal Bend and returns a more educated worker to our communities."

Fifty percent of the scholarships must be awarded to students from Lavaca County, with the remaining 50 percent split between students from Wharton and Gonzales counties. Preference will be given to students who demonstrate a need, and remaining awards will be based on merit.



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