William and Reba Davison

2011

A native of West Virginia, William Guy Davisson was a practicing attorney, judge and cattle rancher in southern Oklahoma. His wife, Reba, was from Tennessee. Her family had roots in the churches of Christ, but her husband did not. Prior to Mrs. Davisson’s death, James LeFan baptized Judge Davisson, then in his early 90s, in Temple, Texas. He credited his association with Oklahoma Christian as being instrumental in his coming to faith.

Mrs. Davisson became involved with Oklahoma Christian as a member of the Ardmore chapter of the Oklahoma Christian Women’s Association. Judge Davisson was acquainted with Dr. George S. Benson’s work at Harding College in Searcy, Arkansas. Dr. Benson was also assisting President James O. Baird with Oklahoma Christian, and he asked Judge Davisson to support the citizenship education efforts in Oklahoma.

On a warm May day in the late 60s, Judge Davisson spoke at an outdoor commencement in Oklahoma Christian’s original quadrangle. As some remember the story, it was a rather lengthy address. Two years later, he agreed to give $500,000 to the college to construct the William Guy and Reba Davisson American Heritage Building. This two-story facility was dedicated in 1970 and has been used by both the education and behavioral and social science programs since then. Mrs. Davisson planted a Tennessee maple tree in front of the building as a reminder of their roots. It grows there today.

Following Mrs. Davisson’s death, Judge Davisson gave another $500,000 in 1975 to construct the Reba Davisson Residence Hall in her memory. It was the last of the nine traditional residence halls to be built on the campus; OC recently renovated the facility as the Honors House at Davisson Hall.

Judge Davisson served as a trustee at Oklahoma Christian a few years immediately prior to his death.

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