DBU Honors Dr. David B. Walls as Recipient of Russell H. Perry Free Enterprise and Tom Landry Leadership Awards at DBU Leadership Gala

Tom Leppert, Dr. Walls, Dr. Wright, and Pete Delkus
(L-R)Tom Leppert, Dr. David B. Walls, Dr. Adam C. Wright, and Pete Delkus

On November 21, DBU hosted the DBU Leadership Gala, a dinner designed to honor outstanding business and civic leaders in North Texas by presenting the Russell H. Perry Free Enterprise Award and the Tom Landry Leadership Award. This year, both awards were presented to Dr. David B. Walls, President and CEO of Austin Industries.

Prior to the program, Patriots past and present gathered with friends of DBU to mingle in the beautiful Hilton Anatole Hotel foyer.

At seven o'clock, attendees made their way to the ballroom, and DBU students Jacob Strong and Cora Hudgins opened the evening by extending a word of welcome. Following the introduction, a greeting was given by the Chair of the Dinner Pete Delkus, WFAA-TX Chief Meteorologist and DBU Trustee. The evening's Pledge of Allegiance was led by former Russell H. Perry Free Enterprise Award Recipient Ken Cooper, followed by the singing of the National Anthem led by the DBU Grand Chorus and then a prayer of invocation by Scott Turner, current Chair of DBU Board of Trustees.

Later, DBU students Jeselyn Foster and Cole Dodson introduced the musical performance by the DBU Grand Chorus under the direction of Dr. Bob Brooks, DBU Professor of Music and Director of Ensemble Arts. Following the choir's performance, attendees heard a word from DBU President Dr. Adam C. Wright as well as the introduction of this year's honoree by Honorary Dinner Chair Tom Leppert, a former recipient of the Russell H. Perry Free Enterprise Award.

picture of Dr. David Walls speaking behind the podium at the DBU Leadership GalaDr. David B. Walls serves as the President and CEO of Austin Industries, the parent company to Austin Commercial, Austin Bridge & Road, and Austin Industrial. Additionally, Dr. Walls currently serves as a trustee of Baylor Scott & White Health Care System, the TEXO board, and the board of the Dallas Regional Chamber. He is also co-chair of an independent commission of the American Road & Transportation Builders Association charged with the implementation of a new industry-developed Safety Certification for Transportation Project Professionals (SCTPP) program. Dr. Walls holds a B.S. in Construction Technology from the University of Houston, a M.S. in Building Construction from Texas A&M University, and a Ph.D. in Leadership from Dallas Baptist University. Dr. Walls and his wife, Jana, are members of First Baptist Church in Rockwall, Texas.

As the evening came to a close, a prayer of benediction was given by Dr. Steve Swofford, Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church Rockwall. In conclusion, the gala was dismissed with the congregational singing of "God Bless America," led by the DBU Grand Chorus.

"We were so pleased this year to honor one of our very own," explained DBU President Dr. Adam C. Wright. "Dr. Walls is an incredible businessman, generous philanthropist, and civic leader, but most importantly, he is a Christ-centered servant leader who puts God first. He loves his family and has been a wonderful blessing to us at DBU."

Written by Emmalie Ellis

Emmalie Ellis writes for the University Communications department at Dallas Baptist University.