Joe Wyatt
Published March 20, 2019

By the time Bill Crawford retired as dean of health sciences at Amarillo College, he had served in various capacities under nine AC presidents and, equally remarkably, during the administrations of nine different U.S. presidents.

BillCrawfordINCrawford, whose 44-year career as a teacher of radiography and administrator of AC healthcare programs stretched from 1968-2012, has been named Professor Emeritus.


AC’s Faculty Senate will sponsor a reception for Crawford from 2:30-4 p.m. Monday, April 1 in the College Union Building on the Washington Street Campus.


“I consider myself one of the luckiest people in the world for having had a job at the same place for 44 years, one that I enjoyed and never dreaded going to,” Crawford said. “I love Amarillo College.”


Crawford, an associate professor of radiography, joined the AC faculty as a part-time instructor in 1968 when the X-ray program at Baptist St. Anthony’s Hospital became part of the College. A year later, he was teaching radiography full time, and in 1970 Crawford became director of the Radiography Program.


In the mid-1990s, Crawford was named chair of the entire Allied Health Division, and he ascended further to dean of health sciences in 2009. Yet throughout his tenure on the administrative side, he remained true to his first professional love – teaching.


“I never wanted to get promoted out of education,” Crawford said. “I’m forever grateful to Gene Byrd, who was dean of instruction, for allowing me to continue to teach.”


And he taught a lot, almost single handedly stocking the Panhandle region with well-trained professional radiographers.


“His contribution to the community is immeasurable in that he turned out 40 years of highly skilled radiographers to care for the Panhandle’s sick and injured,” one nominator wrote. “He was an amazing instructor and is an amazing man.”

Of course Crawford did even more than teach and administrate at AC; he participated in five successful self-studies for accreditation, helped establish the healthcare area as the College’s first fully computer-networked zone, and served a term as president of Faculty Senate (1989-90).


Crawford won AC’s highest faculty accolade in 2008, the John F. Mead Faculty Excellence Award, and twice his peers selected him to be AC’s nominee for Texas’ prestigious Minnie Stevens Piper Professorship.


In 2012, he was the recipient of the AC President’s Special Achievement Award for his 44 years of exemplary service.


Dr. A.B. Martin was president of AC when Crawford joined the faculty in 1962, and Lyndon Johnson was the nation’s commander-in-chief. The Beatles released the “White Album” that year, and a gallon of gas cost 34 cents. More than four decades later, Bill Crawford was still going strong at AC, and more than five decades later, he continues to ply his craft by regularly leading Bible studies at Central Church of Christ.


“God gave me a gift for teaching and I was so fortunate to be able to use that gift for many years at Amarillo College, and now at our church,” Crawford said. “I was also extremely fortunate to have an excellent staff at AC. I was not a micro manager; I just let them do their jobs and they made it a really great division.”