Kenneth W. Davis, elected a
Fellow of the Texas folklore Society
at the TFS Centennial meeting in 2009, was honored, on April
2, 2010, at the society's Abilene meeting. The Fellows Award cited his many years of
service as a member, contributor, mentor, Director, Vice-President, and
President of the Society. TFS protocol requires that the membership
votes on and approves such an appointment, and the ceremony must be
arranged for the following annual meeting.
Davis was presented with a plaque and certificate proclaiming this
honor, and his name was inscribed on a large plaque listing the
"Fellows of the Texas Folklore Society." He is the fourteenth Fellow
named since the founding of the TFS in 1909. Those who came before
him include John Avery Lomax, J. Frank Dobie, Mody Boatright, F. E.
“Ab” Abernethy, John O. West, Joyce Gibson Roach, James Ward Lee,
and Lou Rodenberger (to name a few). The position of Fellow is
reserved for only a select few.
TFS Secretary-Editor Dr. Ken Untiedt and
newly-elected President Mary Margaret Campbell (both former students
of Davis) spoke in tribute to Davis' contribution to the TFS and to
their own development as folklorists. Untiedt said, "I certainly
wouldn’t be where I am today without his support and guidance."
Former TFS President L. Patrick Hughes also spoke with praise of
Davis, a regular contributor, had been on the
program earlier, delivering his paper, "Every Thing but the Squeal -
Hog Killing and Curing Meat in Texas."
We are all very proud of
a past president of the Texas Folklore Society, is Professor
Emeritus of English at Texas Tech University, from which he earned a
Bachelor of Arts degree in English before attending Vanderbilt
University for a master’s degree and then a Ph. D. in English. For
many years at Texas Tech University he taught undergraduate and
graduate courses in American and Comparative Folklore. He is
a past-president of the Texas/Southwest Popular Culture Association,
the American Studies Association of Texas, and of the West Texas
Historical Association of which he was named Honorary Life Member in
2007. He has also been Sheriff of the Lubbock Corral of Westerner’s
International and a member of the Lubbock Country Historical
retirement he remains much interested in Texas folklore and in the
literature and history of the West and Southwest.