Your thoughts, comments and remembrances

CTTR congratulates Mr. Dock Burke

Please leave your own comments and messages to Dock Burke in the comment area below:


  1. Dear Dock,
    Thank you for all your support in these past few years

    and all the best for your new beginning!
    (Remember: today is the first day of the rest of your life)


  2. Judy Yahoodik says

    I will miss you so much, Dock. One of my fondest memories will always be the April 2006 UTC Plenary Meeting in Washington, DC to kcik of the new Grants. We were in a conference room with a wall of mirrors behind the speaker podium. You were seated in the front row. One of “my other duties as assigned” by Tom Marchessault, was to hold up signs letting speakers know that their alotted time was ending. In you inimitable way, you made faces at me via the mirros – especially when speakers ignored me and I would try to ge ttheir attention. I came so close to laughing out loud because of you. I was priceless. You are just THE BEST! – Judy

  3. Congratulations, Mr. Burke!! Thank you for all of the fabulous old and new memories we share!! Do you remember when I was little bitty and you & Dad would take me with you to the do-nut place on Texas Ave or to the MSC on Sunday mornings? I loved those days and that’s one of my most vivid and oldest memories ~ makes me smile every time I think of it and all the fun I always had with you & Dad!
    Thanks for being in my life for all of my life 🙂
    I love you,
    Marielle McFarland

  4. Sharada Vadali says

    All the very best for new beginnings— Dock!

    Enjoy your retirement.

    Best wishes,


  5. Roberto Cavazos says

    Dock! You not being at TTI is something I never thought I would see! I cannot thank you enough for your guidance, support and your unstinting warmth and friendship since I first went to work for you in 1985. I can’t thank you enough for having faith in me and providing me with my first real job. Working with you, Clyde Lee and the late and great Bill Ward on what turned out to be a study of major importance was a life altering experience for a 23 year old wet behind the ears kid from Laredo. In large part that experience under your mentorship gave me the confidence to go out and do many challenging and exciting things in life. Over nearly 30 years you have been generous in your friendship and always provided sage advice and insight on matters of business, career and life. I can’t thank you enough amigo. I do have one complaint: You were the best boss I ever had and all others fell short so I had to be my own boss–still that has turned out to be a second best solution. Hug and Godspeed my good friend. You are as we say down real south–un chingon.

  6. Doc – we will always have the GOOD years of the yanks, including AJ to kick around- You and Mo going out in the same year – great distinction, both had really great careers- now no excuse to the two of you visiting Roz and me in the Bagel capital of the world – with true love – Buz

  7. Jose Salinas says

    Mr. Burke, Sir y Señor Dock,

    I cannot believe that nothing was mentioned in your bio about your stint as a renown member of the infamous 1st Battalion, Company D-1 or Spider-D in the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets. At the time, A&M was a “college” or military institution with a student body of less than 8,000. Assuming that these comments are supposed to be “clean” and of high ethical language, I will forego all of the horrible things you did to us poor and lowly “fish” when you were a sergebutt. Plus, I am not sure if the website could carry that many stories without crashing. Having said that, I want to personally tell you that my “fish year” remains my most memorable experience. I took literally hundreds of hours of leadership training in my 39 years with the government. The total of those hours do not come close to one hour as a ’64 Spider fish. It made me who I am today. Not sure if that is a compliment for sure, since Mr. Hall, Sir claims that I am the only “fish” who can still screw-up a junk pile. Then again what does he know! I can not believe that I am writing all of these good things about a sergebutt ’62. Maybe no one will believe what I have written or even read it. So on the more serious side of life, I guess, I real do appreciate your leadership at A&M and the many things you “drilled” into me, my fol (fish Lee Sanders) and the rest of my Spider fish buddies. Dock, I wish you the very best in your retirement years, and PLEASE do be careful when you get on escalators!!!!! Hope to see again and again at the Spider Crawl-ins. Much joy, happiness and saludes, Su amigo,
    fish salinas Spider fish’64

  8. Elizabeth Deakin says

    Dock, best wishes and much happiness in your retirement – I always enjoyed our UTC chats and hope our paths cross again.



  9. Andrew Farkas says

    I’m going to miss you at various transportation meetings. I always looked for you at meetings, so we could tell jokes and discuss Texas politics. Most of the time those two subjects were one and the same! Best wishes for your retirement.

  10. cliff spiegelman says

    Your leadership and kindness will always be appreciated and missed. SWUTC has been and is a great example of how you changed the face of transportation research in the region. Now you can go smell the wildflowers along the side of the roads that your leadership improved.

  11. Martha Raney Taylor says

    Enjoy your retirement, Dock. You have truly earned it! I’m blessed to have worked with you and down the hall from you since joining TTI. Not sure what to expect starting next month, but there will certainly be less mischief on our hallway.

  12. Sue Chrysler says

    Dock – I had the pleasure of knowing you both through your family and TTI. I hope you can spend lots of time with those grandkids who lived down the street from me.


  13. Melissa Tooley says

    Wow, Dock! I can’t believe that the time is here and you are really going to retire. For many years, starting as a graduate student, I have admired you and the program that you have built here at TTI. SWUTC is considered a flagship of the UTC program due to your vision and wisdom. Your management of the consortium as it has evolved over the past 25 years is an inspiration to me and many others. The standing ovation at the summer CUTC meeting when your impending retirement was announced was indicative of the level of esteem that you enjoy from your peers. I can’t imagine CUTC/UTC meetings without you!

    On a personal level, thank you for your friendship, guidance, encouragement, and most especially your wicked sense of humor. May your retirement bring you much joy and happiness, with lots of time to enjoy with your devoted family and friends. Also, be sure to throw lots of sticks for Lola, and to drink many cups of coffee with your buddies! And don’t forget those of us who will be missing you on a daily basis.

    Cheers to you, my friend!


  14. Dock,

    How did we get so old in such a young period of time? Seems like we were beginning to run UTCs together in the early 1990’s just yesterday. You’ve done a phenomenal job with remarkable tact and effectiveness and are sure a role model for the youngsters coming up behind us. I am going to follow your lead in a couple of years and look for a chair that leans back in which I can place my feet on a table…and maybe some fishing. Will look forward to seeing you at this last round of CUTC meetings.

    Rod Diridon

  15. Joel Ridout says

    I believe it was day before yesterday when you were the C.O. of Spider D-1 and I was your Executive Officer. I don’t think I have ever had that much fun in total in all the years since as I had in that one wonderful senior year. Happy retirement,old friend, and God bless and God speed.

  16. Duane Rosa says

    Dock, Remember back in 1996 – you and Herb helped me so much start up the Regional Division of TTI at West Texas A&M University. I don’t think I would have survived TTI and the TxDOT research projects I participated on without your help and guidance. I still remember our many conversations. Doc, I firmly believe that retirement can be the very best time of our lives. I have about 3-4 more years to retirement from WTAMU, doing now what I love best- teaching economics. I wish you the very best in retirement, Duane

  17. Amy Stearns says

    Hey, Dock!

    Your UTC was the very first one I visited, quite early on in my job when I barely knew what a “You Tee See” was. That was back when the program had just doubled in size for the first time (to 19 centers, shocker!). I remember being struck by how “Texas” you seemed – string tie, boots, and of course the accent – and I wondered whether all the UTC Directors would characterize their regions in that way (Buzz Paaswell certainly did!). Do you recall the group dinner the first night of that site visit, at a BBQ place that seemed to me to be the Texas version of a Maryland crab house: long plank tables, covered in brown paper, on which the waiter plopped a mess o’ meat, a mess o’ slaw, slices of white bread, and (wait for it…) a steak knife! No fork, no plate, and certainly no instructions for us East Coasters. But you and Barb and the others were very kind and made us all feel right at home. Now, years later, when I come to College Station it’s a very different place, with several favorite restaurants I go back to repeatedly, plus lots more hotels than just the Hilton (where Jimmy J.J. “dy-no-MITE!!” Walker was performing in the hotel lounge on one of our visits).

    You have a tremendous capacity for joy, so I know you’ll have a wonderful retirement. It’s wonderful knowing you, and let’s keep in touch.


  18. Dear Dock,

    Ralph Waldo Emerson once said “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” Well, you were and did all those things, and seemed to be pretty happy, too! What’s the secret?? Though our talks were brief, I always looked forward to them. You exude warmth and friendship, and it is very becoming. Hey, and I’m counting on your A&M guy (Tannehill) to lead Miami to the NFL promised land.

    All the best in your next chapter which I am sure will be just as fulfilling as this last one.

    ~Joel Volinski

  19. Dock:

    It has been a joy working on some little things for you. You are always so kind, wearing that everlasting smile. I will miss seeing you around. May you have all the fun and happiness in your retirement!

    Hong Yu

  20. Charlie Wallace says

    Hey Dock,

    Congratulations on your long and successful career and best wishes on your retirement. Actually, you’re way too young be retiring and I was hoping you’d foilow Hall’s and my examples by continuing to work longer than your early 70’s in support of keeping the Social Security system solvent.

    Since I never worked with you at TTI and unlike, Ridout and fish Salinas, was never a member of the TC-contaminated Spider D-1, my fondest memories of you go back to our 1958-59 fish year at TAMC in Old Army “A” Troop Jocks, “the best dam outfit on campus, sir.” That was many years ago, many good times, a few mostly forgotten bad ones and, unfortunately, too many of our comrades no longer with us, and many who are now in ill health. By the way, since no one else commented on it, the cavalry brass you wore in the photo looks really sharp! I remember some of us fish would sometimes wear it hoping not to get caught.

    I’ve really enjoyed seeing and visiting with you in recent years at the Jock and the 50-year reunions and hope we can do such again in the future.

    Still consulting in Spring, Texas, your “A” Troop fish buddy,

    fish Wallace

  21. Ben Goodwyn says

    Hey Old Timer:

    My God had we know in 1959 that big-eared, skinny kid from Quanah would become a pudgy, bearded liberal with a red beret, we would have placed him in a fart sack (mattress cover), tied the top and drown him in the clay pits.

    Regardless of the opinion of the vast majority, I still like you, Dock, and wish you the best as you walk into the sunset with that wiry grin, looking back over your shoulder at your lengthening shadow and now able to take the roads less traveled…Hurry up, times wasting…

    Semper Fi, old friend…


  22. Tom Ognibene says

    The times we spent together in our military service are some of the best remembrances of my life. When I arrived as a new lieutenant we all had dinner together with the captain (short fellow I cant recall his name). My wife lamented to you; Doesn’t my husband eat too fast? and you responded” Well,I don’t know about that, but its obvious there is nothing else on his mind?
    I also remember when you took charge or running the “TR’s” and you wanted it to be perfect. I loved those cut out representations of the tanks and the PC’S and all the charts. On the second night we had breakdown’s on four tanks and I took SP4 Monroe and a crew and we finished at 2 AM and when we returned your had that big Dock Burke smile on your face because we were ready to go at 100%. Early the next morning you were filled with nervous energy running from truck to truck getting the troops boarded. In the midst of the chaos you walked over the me at the back of one 2/12 ton and tugged on my Parka (the one with the hood and fur lined collar) I turned around and you appeared very serious and I said “anybody want a “walnetto”, you burst into a big smile and the tension was gone. It was the best TR we ever ran.

  23. Lisa Patke says

    Thanks for many of your best years, now enjoy your rest years! Continue to have fun in your retirement!

  24. Terri Parker says


    It has been a pleasure to work with you over the last six years. In the development of the website, I have enjoyed reading about your early days at TTI and seeing all of the photos of TTI staff and your lovely family.

    I always teased you about dressing like you were “on safari.” Now you can honestly say you are on “retirement safari!” I hope your adventures are grand!

    Stay in touch,


  25. John Blackburn says

    Howdy Dock,

    My name is John Blackburn in the Class of 1963. I was a fish (freshman) when Dock was a sophomore
    in the Corps of Cadets. I well remember the first time I was introduced to Mr. Burke. I thought I had finally
    met a decent and nice “pi*s*ea* upperclassman and it struck me that he always had a big smile and that
    he must have liked me..

    Well, as my freshman year went on, I came to know Dock not as a friend but as a very demanding
    member of the corps who was capable of diligently hazing freshmen with a big smile as he enjoyed it.

    Now some 50 years later and as I see Dock he still has that wonderful smile and today I know he is
    my friend; “Time Changes Everything”.

    Congratulations to you Dock and I Iook forward to visiting with you this coming October.

  26. Shawn Turner says

    Happy Trails in your retirement, Dock!! I fondly remember my first interactions with you – I was a TAMU grad student and your support (through the SWUTC program) made an immense difference in my education. You were always kind and reached out to all the students. My most common recollection of you over the past 20 years was your smile – every time you greeted me or said Howdy you had a huge smile on your face, and it always brightened my day.
    Best wishes!! Shawn Turner

  27. Barb Lorenz says

    31 years working together at good ‘ole TTI…how to begin? Obviously, there are too many fond memories and crazy stories to reminisce about here, but there are a few things I want to say. First, thank you Dock for being a true friend for all these years and listening to my endless string of questions, observations, comments, gripes and my stories which sometimes contained “authentic frontier gibberish”. Your sense of humor and levity made work a pure joy and something I looked forward to every day. Thank you for also being an outstanding mentor. By example you taught me how to overcome my default mode of “let’s kill this problem (or principal investigator) and move on” with the importance of patience, how to step back and reexamine any situation and approach it in a calm, thoughtful manner. O.k., I have to admit, even after all these years, this is still a work in progress, but, I’m trying. Mostly, I want to thank you for being such an avid champion for your fellow coworkers. You were always the first to recognize and express your gratitude to me and to your other coworkers for what they brought to the table. Your nurturing, generous, noncritical spirit enabled all of us to soar.

    For you, it’s no more “Work, Work, Work” as Governor William J. LePetomane would say…and as you are so fond of imitating. Enjoy your retirement Dock, try not to OD on coffee and baseball and dang it…I hope I can still call you whenever I have more military history questions.

  28. Penny Beaumont says

    Dear Dock…
    What a joy it was to work with you (and Barb, and Naomi) on SWUTC matters, an organization that you led so well, and which did so much for transportation education and research. I learned so much, and enjoyed working with you….and dear Sadler, in the earlier days.
    You are one of the few I know who can actually wear a beret and look cool! Always a smile, always a story to tell, and the great sense of humor. I know you and Karen will enjoy your retirement. And just think, now you and Roger can have longer ‘meetings’ on Wednesdays.
    We’ll stay in touch I know…enjoy the ‘golden years.’

  29. Myra Bright says

    Hi Dock

    So you finally decided to retire. I thoroughly enjoyed working with you. Anytime I had a question regarding your project you always came through and smiled about it. Take care in retirement that you don’t find yourself busier than when you were working.

    Myra Bright

  30. Well Dock it is about time you hung it up. It is hard to realize that you have been such a great friend for all these years. Perhaps my favorite memory is when we were Fish in A Armor and we prepared you for West Point. Needless to say, in the interest of modesty, I will not go into detail but I am sure you remember. I remember also your telling me what the doctor had to say about it during your physical for West Point. Another memory is the difficulty I had in reading one of your many articles back when we first moved to Houston-almost wore out a Webster Dictionary.

  31. Hayes Ross says

    It was a privelege to have known you as a colleague, and to continue to know you as a friend. I could always count on a good dose of encouragement and humor when we had ocassion to chew the fat. Although we didnt get to colloborate on many TTI projects I always appreciated your valuable advice on whatever I was trying to accomplish. I suggest you leave DNA so that TTI can clone you.
    Will leave you with an Irish blessing:

    May you always have work for your hands to do.
    May your pockets hold always a coin or two.
    May the sun shine bright on your windowpane.
    May the rainbow be certain to follow each rain.
    May the hand of a friend always be near you.
    And may God fill your heart with gladness to cheer you.

    Best wishes, Hayes

  32. Sharon Holloman says

    Having spent most of my professional career at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, I never had the privilege of working with Mr. Burke. I did, however, become his cousin the day I was born. Going to visit my dearest aunt and uncle and my four cousins in Quanah was always something I treasured. Being younger than my cousins, I had a difficult time keeping the boy’s names connected to the correct individual. To make sure I gave proper credit to the correct cousin, I would describe Dee (as I knew him) as “the tall skinny one with a million dark brown freckles.” (I’m sure he appreciates that comment no better than he did when we were kids.) My best recollections of “Dee” are of an individual who has always been generous with his humor, his knowledge, and his great depth of kindness. It’s an honor to be a part of his extended family.

    In conclusion, Mr. Burke, I wish you much happiness as you pursue this next challenge in your life. It’s time to enjoy your family, friends, and the world around us as you’ve never been able to do before. I look forward to the next chapter in your life and hope to share at least a small part of it!

  33. Frank Hall says

    Dear fish o’ lady (fol),
    What can one say to your very first fish friend in A Troop Jocks (Armor) back in 1958, in the Corps of Cadets (C of C) at dear ol’ AMC, and was blessed by being your fol for our entire fish year? One thing I think that I’ve never told you is how much sadness I felt when you left for West Point and the joy I experienced upon your return to the fold. Such dear friends after all these years, I believe, is a little taste of heaven. I could go on but will end this soon. You know my warm feeling for you (as BG thinks he knows them).

    One piece of advice from one who’s kinda retired and that I’ve already given to you via phone (but definitely worth repeating)— stay out of Karen’s way and vacate the premises from time-to-time. Don’t believe that “a man’s home is his castle”. It’s the woman’s if he’s happily married and wishes to remain so.

    One other thing and I promise this is the last— I made only one “D” in my entire studies at A&M and that was in English 101. I was prouder of this grade than probably any other. I pulled up the “F” to “D” with the “A” I made on the last theme of the semester that you “edited” (read practically wrote), notwith-standing the Honor Code of the C of C.

    God bless you and yours as you enter this new phase of life,

    Frank Foy Hall ’62 (aka yfol, frig, foy boy, etc.)

    P.S. Congratulations on this truly classy website and giving so many more people a chance to enjoy yours and everyone’s postings. It comes as no surprise that all these people love you as I do.

  34. John Hobbs says

    Well Dock, you’re coming to the end of the long ride. And survived. Just a few words of encouragement for your next long ride…

    1. “Decaf” (because Karen deserves it),
    2. “Take the stairs!” (better for your health and besides, escalators, you don’t know how to work ’em!)
    3. “Enjoy” (your new free time and a pace that YOU set; your friends; and most importantly, your family, especially those grandkids!!)

    and finally…

    “Know” that you’ve been a pleasure to work with all of these years. You’ve been a good friend, a valued fellow philosophizer, and an unending source of information, good humor and unmatched civility! You are indeed a true Southern gentleman and I’m honored to have known you for the last 40 years!

    Good luck in your retirement.
    All the best to you, Karen and your family.

    “Endeavor to persevere.”
    “Ride Safe!”

  35. Harlow Landphair says

    Congratulations Dock

    You are going to enjoy the retirement thing, it will take a bit of getting used to, but no schedule, no watch, no time….Its wonderful.

    When I had the opportunity to work with you in my early days with TTI you never told me no and when I needed it you pointed me in the right direction….usually before Anna Jo got a hold of me.

    May you have good health lots of grand children lots of laughs and may all your retirement dreams come true.



  36. Billy Connor says


    I’ve enjoyed working with you not only for your insight, insightful thoughts and vision, but also for your whit and candor. We are going to miss that.

    Enjoy your retirement, but I sure you’ll still have a presence in the transportation world.


  37. Charles Pinnell says

    Dear Dock:

    Congratulations on your 45 years of dedicated service to TTI and best wishes for a long and happy retirement.

    Best regards, Charles Pinnell

  38. R. Malcolm Richards says

    Hi Dock,

    Thank you for your friendship over so many years. Quite a record you have put together during “your run” at A&M and you have contributed to making the University a better place.

    All the best to you and Karen and to your family. I hope you find your retirement to be rewarding and a time to contemplate and enjoy the many things that you have accomplished.


  39. Charles Giammona says

    Dear Dock,

    So young, impressionable, idealistic and naive we were those many years ago. Too bad we had to grow up and get old. But that’s what retirement is for…remembering the good parts, the good people and the differences that we made.

    A self-starter, your overall enthusiasm carried over to others, including myself, and helped people and programs get up and keep going. You brought a unique blend of common sense, counsel, education, and administrative talent to a job. Simply, you possess those talents that make you a good leader. Your style, energy, wonderfully rye sense of humor, and originality got you through the most arduous task including challenges that would have stopped others. These are just some of the thoughts that come to mind reflecting on what happened these years to achieve the success you have today.

    The most important thought about you comes from the chorus of an old Randy Travis song, “…It’s Not Want You Take When You Leave This World Behind, It’s What You Leave Behind When You Go.” You a leave a model legacy that is unique and especially rare in the world today. May the differences you have made be only the beginnings for others to emulate and make the world all the better because of your example. God bless…

    Your friend and colleague always.

  40. Bud Rudder '62 says

    Congratulations Dock!
    Your classmates are very pleased to count you as one of us.

  41. fish Woodward says

    fish Burke,

    Thanks for you long and honorable service to our country, both in and out of uniform. Enjoy your retirement and give Karen a big hug from all your fish buddies.

    fish Woodward (Wolf)
    C Troop

  42. Michael Weiss says


    Retirement is a great time for wonderful afternoon naps and watching baseball. I miss our afternoon gatherings to watch Aggie baseball, eating lunch in DC and, in the early years, playing Chess into the night. You have been a great friend and valuable mentor. You and Strunk and White taught me more about writing and grammar than all my previous professors.

    One of your many admirers cautioned you to get out of the house for Karen’s sake, Being married for better or worse does not necessarily include lunch. I know you and Karen will continue to have a great time together.


  43. Rodger Koppa says

    Dock, I’ve been retired from TTI 12 years and it seems like only yesterday I was working on one of my grant-like projects through SWUTC under your and Barb’s guidance. Closest I ever got to a grant! I remember working with you on selling and planning the awards and professional recognition program that is now such an integral part of TTI, just one small example of the vision you brought to the outfit! I am sure you will find many things to do in retirement as I have. Looking forward to seeing you at the next TTI Day.
    Best wishes–Rodger

  44. Francis Sang-Cheol Shin in Korea says

    After I got the news that you are going to retire from TTI, the first words that I recalled from my memory were ‘Kindness’ and ‘Generousity’.

    Thank you for your help in my stay at TAMU. I really enjoyed working with you.
    You were a good mentor and guider to me.

    I believe the retirement will be a new start for the rest of your life.
    My family and I remember your kindness, and we always miss you.

    Please have good health and have a happy retirement.
    God bless you and your family.

    From Francis in Seoul, Korea.

  45. Bill Eisele says

    Congratulations on your retirement Dock! Your leadership, ideas and friendly demeanor will be missed! Best of luck on your future endeavors. It has been great working with you over the years. See you Olsen Field! Best wishes – Bill Eisele

  46. Hey Dock –

    I can’t believe that you are going to “bail” after a mere 45 years! Where is your dedication???

    Seriously, I have enjoyed working with you since joining TTI in 1990. We managed to survive more than a few committees and SWUTC audits! You always had a great perspective about how things “actually worked” and were usually right! I appreciate your friendship, guidance and keen sense of humor.

    Enjoy your retirement – it is well deserved. Best of luck to you and Karen!


  47. Susan Lancaster says

    Congratulations Dock! Welcome to the ranks of the retired. You and Karen can relax, travel and find more time for family and fun pursuits. Time goes by quickly at TTI. I know it did for me. You may not remember, but you are the reason I applied for the job of Director of Communications at TTI. I worked with Karen in the College of Business, and you had mentioned the job opening to her. She suggested I contact you and find out more about this newly created position. When I visited with you, you told me what a great place TTI was to work, the dedication and talent of the people who worked there and the quality and importance of the transportation research they conducted. I was sold, and the rest is well history. Thank you for your sage advice, your support and your friendship over the years. Hope to see more of you and Karen in the future.

  48. Robin Kline says

    I can’t wait to hear about your new adventures in your new life of retirement! You’ll be missed for sure, but your legacy (and laughter) lives on. Maybe now you’ll have time to go somehwere cool in the summer, where you can’t actually fry an egg on the pavement. I still say the hottest summer I’ve ever experienced was the one during our site visit in July to College Station. I just couldn’t understand how you managed to look so cool when this East coast girl was melting in her shoes. You’ve touched many, many people who will carry fond memories of you always. Please stay in touch (or at least on the radar!)

  49. Jody Eubank says


    It was a pleasure knowing & working with you. You always had a smile and a kind word. It was deeply appreciated! I agree with Harlow; retirement is the best!Takes some getting used to but within the month, it is happy go lucky! No deadlines and no having be somewhere at an appointed time. Best wishes to you. Hope you enjoy each day! Jody

  50. Juan Carlos Villa says

    Thanks very much for your support, I do remember that we met many years before I joined TTI and we worked together in the binational border project in the 80s, and you travelled by road throughout Mexico. Then we met again when I came to interview to College Station, and it was a great and pleasant surprise. All the best in this new phase of your life and keep in touch!!!


  51. Dear Dock,

    Congratulations and all best wishes on whatever lies ahead — which I know will be exciting and fulfilling! You have touched the lives of so many around the State, the nation, and the world with your intellect, your passion, your insight, and your humanity. I am honored to be among those whose lives you have enhanced and minds you have expanded.

    Thank you for your friendship always. All good things ahead,


  52. Dock, Welcome Aboard the Retirement Ship. It’s a great way to travel. Best to you in all your future endeavors. fish Cosby (B Troop)

  53. Bonnie Duke says

    Hey “DB,”

    Congratulations on your retirement! It has been a pleasure working with you for many years. You have have lifted my spirts more times that I can count with a smile and “Hey BD.” You will be missed more than you know!

    I wish you nothing but the best going forward. You are truly one of the good guys on this planet!


  54. Charlene Meier says


    Congratulations on your retirement from TTI. Forty-five years–awesome! It was a pleasure knowing and working with you. Enjoy your retirement; it is the best.


  55. Eldridge Goins '62 says

    Howdy Doc

    Our paths didn’t cross too often during our time at Aggieland ……but your reputation then and since has been something I have admired and of which you can be proud. The comments on this page are a tribute to your life and to the school we love. fish Salinas’ remarks concerning the leadership training he received in Spider D being superior to that he experienced in many other forums is a common value most of us ole Ags share. Congratulations to you and best of wishes in your retirement. Thanks for sharing these comments.


    Eldridge Goins ’62

  56. Virginia Gard says


    Best wishes to a great guy. Thanks for your support when I needed it. Have a great retirement.

    With love,

    PS from Susan: Now you get to choose WHAT you want to do, WHEN you want to do it, and IF you want to do it. Enjoy!!

  57. Dock, from the first day when I met you as a freshman junior faculty, you had treated me as an equal colleague, and consistently supported me throughout my growth into a responsbile scholar. I will never forget your influence, your help, and your kindness. You approved my first grant through SWUTC, which was the first grant I ever had in my life, which established my initial foundation to move as a university faculty. You could always answer difficult questions and handle complicated issues in a way that ended up with encouragement and productivity! Dock, I wish you best in your relaxed years down the road, and would be willing to lend my hand that might enrich your joy and time! Please contact me whenever I am needed! — Lei

  58. fish Wilkes `64 says

    Dock- don`t forget my high school song – -” come all you Cranes do yew recall – – – -” `hope to see yew at the rondevous – –

  59. Retirement – sounds like a great idea, Congratulations. Maybe some of us can get together and have a leisurely lunch (with no clock watching because we have to get back to work.)
    Best wished to you always,
    Pam Kopf

  60. J. D. Sartwelle, JR. says

    Dock…..45 years of service to one outfit is rarely seen….45 productive years is even more rarely seen……It is the training that came from being in the Corps of Cadets at TAMC. It can and does prepare one for anything that comes in life. Congratulations and best wishes with hopes that the coming years treat you well. Your Class of ’63 friend from the fist “real” class of Spider D. J. D. Sartwelle, Jr. Sealy, TX.

  61. Chandra Bhat says


    Just wanted to say how much you have meant to us here at UT Austin. Your stewardship of SWUTC was exemplary, and you certainly deserve all the credit for the so many undergraduate student interns who have passed through our USIT program. As you know, many of these students have returned back as graduate students, and we now even have a faculty member (Stephen Boyles) who started off as a USIT intern!

    Personally speaking, I want you to know that you have been gracious with your time, magnanimous in your words of encouragement, and a pillar of support to so many of us. Your personable style, combined with your deep philosophical thinking, made it a pleasure to interact with you. I certainly will miss that in our professional exchanges, but hope to continue to be in touch in other ways.

    My best wishes to you as you transition into this new phase in your life. Please do let me know when you are in the Austin area. Would love to keep in touch and catch up.


  62. Jack Klug '62 says


    Congratulations to my favorite Aggie ground-pounder. 45 years of service to the same organization is quite an accomplishment. I could only make 43.
    Hope to see more of you since you are retired. Come see Barb and I in San Antonio whenever you get the chance.

    Jack Klug ’62

  63. Dear Dock,

    There are few people that I have met in my career that are able to effectively manage a big plate of work in a manner that did not come across that you were ever too busy to listen and share your wisdom. Your demeanor was infectious and resulted in a team at SWUTC that has always been a pleasure to be around and work with. Your ability to create an environment that delivers results in a fun and engaged atmosphere is a rare commodity in the world of higher education. I look to you as a role model, not just for your accomplishments but for the means in how you deliver the results.

    Please come visit us often in New Orleans.

    All the best and enjoy your retirement,

    John L. Renne

  64. Wallar Overton '61 says

    Dock, until tonight, you were a contact I made during the last presidential race, but after reading your bio and these wonderful and thoughtful comments about your carreer at TTI, viewing your picture with crossed sabers, and reading comments from fellow Corps members, it is great to finally get to know you as a person folks loved, and so many mentioned your always present smile. I am having some difficulty with the fish year in “A” Armor ( I always admired how Jock fish could wear their ‘cap’ tilted on the side and could chew tobacco on campus) and then West Point entered your life, which you obviously didn’t like and returned to A Jocks, but was CO of Spider D Infantry. Another letter led me to believe you were in Armor on active duty in a place where one wore a parka, which is where I landed too in Armored Cavalry on the E/W German border. We have so much more ground to cover in the future.
    Having never had the priviledge of retiring, nor expect to since I farm/ranch, my view is that it is an ending of the active part of one’s existance, but I am sure that part never leaves one’s thinking, because it what you devoted so many years to and helped make you what you are and how folks view you who worked with you and loved you. Still, it is a beginning of the rest of your life and that will develop in time to something you can still contribute your talents to as well, I am sure. My suggestion is that you need to lean toward politics and run for some state office you would feel comfortable with. I have the governor’s ear donchaknow since I am from Paint Creek. Hope to finally meet you in October. Wish your site had a spell check.

  65. John and Sue Robertson says

    Dear Dock:

    Congratulations on your retirement from TTI after many, many years of selfless devotion, masterful service and creative wisdom offered each day anew to Texas, the nation, and your beloved Texas A&M. I am proud and fortunate to be among those who have had the privilege to know you over the years and to be enriched by your friendship, companionship, loyalty and generosity. You’ve been a teacher, mentor, advocate, counselor, interlocutor, constructive critic and social scientist to me and many others over so many years. I’ve come to witness through your example public service, humane grace, and community responsibility as living, breathing realities, not merely abstractions and easy throw-aways like so many disposable ornaments. Authenticity, honesty, integrity, humility, and the courage to share these with others mark your unique imprint on those who know you and value their time with you. And, you are just a helluva lot of fun in a world all too grim, and a business all to laden with self- importance and nuclear egos. Enjoy your time together with Karen, the kids, grand- kids, Lola, Wallace and all those other critters you love. Revel in your cooking, reading, writing and Aggie baseball (and those Yankees – now possible in person). And, hopefully, please, save some time for an occasional coffee break that serves to order chaos, right the wrongs, illuminate the shadows, clarify the patterns, spark the conscience, and devastate routine with a sudden spirited force of creative, positive energy.

    Happy Trails,


    To my dear friend, Dock. Congratulations on your retirement from TTI. What an honor and pleasure it has been to get to know you and become your friend. Everyone who knows you sees in all you do and all you are the time-honored values of a wonderful human being and quintessential Aggie. You are a walking, breathing example to all of us of what we should be.
    You are the most loyal person and friend on the face of this earth. We all know that we can trust you to be there for us – always! You lead by example in your every day life and all of us willingly follow you as we seek your guidance through life’s ups and downs. You are the embodiment of the very definition of integrity. Trusting you in the smallest and biggest events of life is easy because you will never let us down. You respect everyone for who and what they are – no matter how insignificant or unimportant. You excel in all walks of life – employer, friend, spouse, dedicated family member. And finally, you give and give and give selflessly of yourself to everyone. So if there was to be a statue erected to personify the core values of an Aggie, it would be you! We are so fortunate to have you and Karen and your family as our friends. What a great gift! I can’t wait to see what you will do next! Gig ’em! Sue

  66. Bob Carter says

    Dock–just a note to convey my congratulations to you . Your impact on those around you is no surprise! Best wishes for many more productive,healthy,and happy years. We probably didn’t recognize it at the time,but you affected the class of ’63 in a posivtive way.We really did look up to you and still do! Congrats again and hope to see you this fall. Bob Carter ’63 –as Sartwelle said–the first fish class of the reorganized Corps and the new “Spider D”. Gig’em,bc

  67. Dock Burke – International Economist of Mystery

    You’ve been great fun to work with, but I’ve always found you to be a walking set of contradictions. Hope you figure some of this stuff out in retirement:
    • An Aggie economist – neither a farmer nor an engineer?
    • A beret wearing Texan.
    • Worked with something called the Texas Highway Department – about a 100 years ago? – and yet is always thinking about the future.
    • A man of impeccable ethics and yet you delight in the hidden ball trick.
    • A man of great patience, a mentor, an example of how to do the right thing the right way, and yet you have an intense dislike for the absurdly slow trips to the mound by Wayne Graham.

    Somehow you make all of this work. I appreciate the example you’ve set and the leadership you’ve shown throughout the SWUTC tenure. On a personal basis, I am deeply grateful for your efforts on my behalf in my Regents Fellow nomination. Its been a lot of fun working and watching baseball with you.

    As a closing remark, I’d ask you to remember the last two words of the National Anthem – “Play Ball!”
    Hope you get to make it to Olsen more often in coming decades.
    With great respect,

  68. Katie Womack says


    Wow, I cannot wrap my brain around you retiring! Never doubt that you will be missed at TTI. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being a wonderful friend and mentor to me all these years. I never laughed so much as in those early years at TTI working with you. What a great time we had. You taught me some important life lessons while I was also learning how to be a TTI-er. I will always be grateful to you. I wish you and Karen and your family the very best and expect to stay in touch!

    With admiration, affection, and all good wishes,
    Katie Womack

  69. David Luskin says

    Reminds me of General Douglas MacArthur’s remark on his retirement, “Old soldiers never die, they simply fade away”. Not sure what he meant by that, but whatever you do, don’t fade away. I hope to hear from you in the future. I enjoyed working with you on that project about transportation and the economy and our other interactions. You must have the best sense of humor in Texas now that I am gone.

  70. Dennis Christiansen says


    You and I both “stumbled” into a pretty incredible organization 4+ years ago, a place so special that we both decided to essentially spend our entire careers here. TTI is an incredible place, we were lucky to have found it, and hopefully we can both feel that we added value to the organization.

    Your leadership of SWUTC has been truly impressive. Three state universities entered into a partnership 25 years ago to propose on a UTC. We won, we won the recpm[petition several times, and those three universities remain committed to continuing the UTC. I am not aware of any other state where this kind of partnership has flousihed for this long. With all of the rivalries and personalities, it took someone special to holdit all together. Your performance in that regard is exemplary, and a lot of long-term friendships came out of it all.

    Thanks for all you have done to enhance TTI. Best wishes for all you choose to do in retirement. But, whatever you choose to do, please stay in touch with all of your friends at TTI.

  71. Carol Abel Lewis says

    Dock, when we began working together in the early 1990s, little did we know the extent to which our transportation centers would bond. More importantly, we didn’t realize that a supportive, steady and reliable attendant friendship would develop. I speak for all of us at CTTR, when I express our total appreciation and thank you for everything throughout the years. You are in the short-list of those credited with the longevity and life of our SWUTC. I think about the annual meetings that always set us on course to keep our SWUTC funded cycle after cycle. Those annual meetings also served to link our three partners (A & M, TSU, and UT) with knowledge about on-going research at each institution and enabled us to know each other better as people and as professionals. Referring just to TSU, we can list you as one of our most ardent supporters. For every day-trip made to attend an Advisory Board meeting for our Center or a graduation of our Summer Institute students – please accept our lavish thanks. Enjoy that retirement and if you happen to think about us (yeah, right), please call and say, “Howdy!” Carol

  72. Susan Adams says

    Dock– You’ve contributed so much to TTI and to so many people: students, colleagues, citizens of Texas and ctizens of everywhere else. SWUTC is a marvel. Through it TTI was able to broaden its research into many vital topics. Thank you! Congratulations on a very successful career and best wishes on your retirement.

  73. Mike Walton says

    Dear Dock,

    It is with a great sense of loss that I write this note. Your departure from the SWUTC program will be felt throughout our academic community and the University research partnership. Of course we understand and appreciate your position and the attraction to start the next phase of your life; however, your gain is our loss.

    Our association began with our teaming on a TxDOT research initiative on truck size and weight and, further, on highway cost responsibility studies. Our collaboration, in my view, was a huge success on both a professional and personal front and has lasted several decades. I will miss our frequent talks and your sage advice.

    On behalf of the university research community I wish to express our heartfelt appreciation for the outstanding service you have given to the partnership. You are highly respected for the leadership, guidance, wisdom and commitment you gave to all with whom you associated. We sincerely appreciate the opportunity to work with you and it has been a personal privilege to have you as a colleague and a friend.

    Best wishes for continued success in your new adventure!

    Yours truly and Godspeed,
    Mike Walton

  74. Nancy Stratta says


    It was always nice to see you when you came to Gilchrist for our Blood Drives. You were always cheerful. I will miss your happy, go lucky disposition. Best wishes to your new life as a retiree.


  75. Dock,

    It is just not going to be the same without fish Burke at Aggieland.

    Congradulations on your retirement and for a job well done.

    I wish you and Karen would come visit me in Galveston for a few days, I could give lessons on how to relax and enjoy doing nothing.

    Stay in touch fish buddy and do come see me if you can.

    Keep the faith.

    Bob Bates

  76. Larry Rilett says

    Dear Dock,

    What a pleasure it has been knowing you and working with you for more than fifteen years. Your support and encouragement has meant so much to so many transportation professionals in Texas and across the US, and I am certainly the beneficiary of your mentoring. Thank you for always being willing to listen and offer advice, and, more importantly, thank you for your friendship. You will be deeply missed by the UTC program and the entire transportation research community.

    While I’ll miss working with you and learning from your insights, I am happy that you are moving on to a well-earned retirement. Everyone at the Mid-America Transportation Center wishes you the very best and we all look forward to hearing about your new adventures in the coming years.

    Best regards,

  77. Cathy Bryan says

    Wow, 45 years sure does look good on you! It has been such a pleasure to have known you. Thanks for always being such an uplifting person to run into either in the elevator or hallway. Retirement. Sounds wonderful, and I know for fact spending more time with grandchildren would definitely be a blessing! Blessings to you and many more laughs and memories.

  78. Tom Cothren says

    Congratulations! I can not believe how fast these last twelve months passed. Seems like yesterday were talking about this milestone in your career. Lynda and I have certainly enjoyed the times we have had with you and your family over the last few years. There are many memories to be shared within that short time. For one, I am surprised your two youngest offspring ever doubted your horse riding days. The pictures that are posted are priceless, especially the one of you in your “Willie Nelson” days! I know that you and Karen will both enjoy that second cup of tea and the fact that there are no deadlines on when you have to be back home. Enjoy your travels, family, and much deserved retirement! Thanks for sharing Michael!
    Tom and Lynda Cothren

  79. Alberto Garcia-Diaz says

    I joined Texas A&M as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering (later renamed Industrial & Systems Engineering) of Texas A&M in August 1978. After 27 years of service I retired to start a second academic career at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. On my last day on the A&M campus I spent hours playing the movie of my professional life in the theater of the mind and opening the treasure chest of the heart, full of memories of glorious days, of great moments that became milestones in the history of my life, of strong feelings of appreciation for friendship and support. Of the trips to visit SDHPT, the stops at Elgin to enjoy the wonderful BBQ, the project meetings, the feelings of security that come from being in the right company at a trying time, the trip back to College Station, the reflection that joins like no glue can. Oh yes, the emails on December 11, year after year. As I think now about those days, I can also almost smell and taste those combination dinners in the Zarape Mexican restaurant of Jose Montemayor downtown Bryan. As they say, a picture is worth one thousand words. Some words actually are worth one thousand pictures. One that come to me as I think about you is gratitude. Buena suerte amigo y muchas gracias por todo.

  80. Becca Simons says


    You have been such a joy to work with in my 24 years with TTI. You have been invaluable to TTI’s Employee Award Process from your insight into the program, to your leadership on the awards review committee. You always kept your fellow TTI’ers in mind when changes were suggested or enchancements were being made. You have impacted many things at TTI and we are a stronger Agency for having you here with us for the past 45 years.

    I wish you and Karen many happy retirement years with your family and friends – stay in touch and may God continue to bless you in all things.


  81. Dear Dock,
    It has been a great pleasure and an honor to work with you these last 25 years. Your leadership through SWUTC has been outstanding, and there is no doubt you will be missed. For thirteen years you served on the SUMMER TRANSPORTATION INSTITUTE advisory board and participated in the Graduation Ceremony of the program. You have shared with K-12 students about the importance of higher education in their careers. Here at TSU we will remember you as great leader, educator, and true friend.
    In conclusion I cannot believe you are retiring, but it seems now is the time for enjoy retirement.

    Wish you and your family the best and again thanks for all you have done for CTTR, NSTI, and TSI. Whenever you come to Houston, please call me and we will lunch.

  82. Happy retirement day to you, Dock! I wish that Michael and I were there to celebrate with you tonight, but we are hoping that you’ll use some of your extra free time to come visit us (and your grand dog) in Richardson very soon! I have so enjoyed learning more about your work through this website. It is clear that you have made an immeasurable impact through your career, and I am very, very proud of you. The photos you’ve collected here are also amazing. As we’ve mentioned, Dad and I are both partial to your stylish Willie Nelson shot, but the pictures of our family gatherings are still my favorites because they remind me of the many wonderful times we’ve spent together. You are one of the kindest, sweetest and all-around-greatest people I know, and I feel so lucky to have you as my father-in-law. Congratulations on this tremendous achievement! I love you!

  83. Dear Dock, We first met about 52 years ago in Spider D at TAMC. Yes, a lot has changed with both of us. Alice and I are happy to send “all the best” for your years ahead in retirement. I came to the corp as a frog, so your kind help was most welcomed. Our greatest loss had been the death of Tom Ralph. We shall never forget his service to the USA. God willing, we will continue to drive to the Spider D crawl-in to see our friends. Well, I was wondering if you have two of those caps you are wearing for the official retirement photo? If you have two, I think you know what we think you can do with them!!! Thanks for our wonderful friendship. At various times, you walk to different drummer. That is truly great and we love you.

  84. Janice Konecny says

    Dock, you will be missed. Thank you for your friendship. You were a joy to work with. Enjoy retirement.

  85. Debbie Mino-Austin says

    What a fantastic site. I so thoroughly enjoyed readying every word of it. It was so much fun to hear names and see faces of people I hadn’t seen since I left A&M and TTI in 1974! Sadler Bridges, Frank McFarland, Denny Christensen…WOW! Do you remember Virginia (can’t think of her last name!) Think she might have been Sadler’s secretary. And the grad students Jay Buehler (sic??) and Chuck Fuchs? I guess I just need to call you up and get these issues resolved! Seriously, Dock, you and Karen have been friends for a long time and I treasure both of you. Your career has been an accomplished one and I am honored to know you. Maybe one of these days we can finally get together for a long overdue visit. Enjoy your retirement and your family as I know you will.

  86. Martin Pietrucha says


    Best wishes as you head into retirement. I will miss you terribly because it always made me happy to walk into a meeting room and see your smiling visage at the table. That’s because if you were there, I knew that there would be some clear-headed thinking about whatever the topic of discussion was going to be leavened with a healthy dose of Texas-style humor.

    All the best,


  87. Kathy Montemayor says

    Dear Dock,

    Congratulations on a well-earned retirement! It was always a pleasure to work with you and see your friendly face. I wish you all the best!


  88. Tom Humphrey says

    Hello Dock

    Our friendship and professional collaborartion over the past 20 years or so have been of great importance to me. It started with the first year of the UTC program and continued from that time to the present. I was fortunate to have worked with you and the first group of UTCP Directors that set the guidlines and standards for the UTCP program that, in my view, continue to guide the program. I send you and your family my very sincere and best wishes for enjoying your retirement.

    Tom Humphrey

  89. Dock—you’re a class act, a truly unique man, and a very dear friend. TTI has great people, but you’re irreplaceable, period. Not only at TTI, but in the Transportation Research world. Not only did you make the SWUTC a national model, but you made a huge difference in the quality and direction of research not only at TTI but at all the SWUTC partners, especially at UT. You’ve mentored the young researchers, often giving them their big break and an opportunity to show their ideas through the Center. The combination of open-mindedness, collegiality, and the highest standards of scholarship that you so graciously display made such a difference to the impact and effectiveness of that project. You know I’m no fan of meetings, but I used to truly look forward to those early SWUTC meetings and students events, even the tough ones where we had to horse-trade with our colleagues in College Station, because you made us all feel that what we were doing was important and did matter. But mostly you made it all seem so effortless, and made us feel good to be working together. I will always cherish those days. I will also miss our more recent culinary traditions during TRB week– but hopefully those don’t have to totally disappear.
    I know you will enjoy having more time for your wonderful family and grandkids– and I look forward to seeing you post more pictures on FB, and hearing about new explorations.

  90. Herb Richardson says


    I am bringing up the rear on comments, but I do want to make some observations on your remarkable career at TTI, the influence you have had on our UTC’s, and on the national CUTC organization.

    During the early years when I was TTI Director, you played a key role in establishing the TTI Center for Ports and Waterways, a consortium of Texas costal universities plus TAMU and UT Austin. At that time there was no coherent university research activity focused on the critical port and waterway enterprises in Texas. This center was established by legislation and given some seed money.
    This was an important initial step in expanding TTI’s modal scope. And, after more than a decade, this center is thriving. Additional centers in ITS, rail, transportation safety and others followed in TTI.

    But your most important legacy is your 25 year service as Director of the SWUTC, a consortium of A&M, UT, Texas Southern and, most recently, LSU and the University of New Orleans. Your approach was innovative, sensitive to the needs of all partners, generous with your time and advice, and always fair and ethical. You earned the respect and admiriation of all involved. As a result, other centers looked to SWUTC as a model as they developed their own strategies and operational approaches.

    On a national level, you provided, through service on the CUTC executive committee and in other ways, a voice of logic and a deep sense of ethics that helped CUTC become a credible voice for transportation research with professional organizations like ARTBA and with USDOT. Many others of course were instrumental and pivotal, but your voice was always there saying “wait a minute…”.

    On a personal level, I have been grateful for your frankness, your willingness to challenge the status quo, to stand up for quality and scholarship, and your willingness to question the current leadership’s views. I will never forget the time you visited the President of Texas A&M and called him down for not stepping forward to defend the faculty when the system issued “profit and loss” statements for individual faculty. These statements, with their “red lines” implicitly condemmed some of our most eminent scholars. By contrast, UT leaders forcefully and successfully opposed this kind of approach to faculty evaluation.

    On behalf of all those whose professional and personal lives you have touched, let me wish you a long and fulfilling retirement. and lets meet for coffee often.


  91. Holly Crenshaw says

    Hi Dock,

    I am thankful that I had the opportunity to visit with you on several occasions prior to your retirement and share my thoughts and thanks to you for your contributions and outstanding relationship. It was an incredible opportunity to work with you (and others) on the Sadler Bridges Conference Room dedication.

    I walked past your office today, thought about you and all of the wonderful stories that you shared through the years and wanted to simply, again, say thank you.

    I hope that you are enjoying your retirement and I look forward to seeing you soon.


  92. Ual , este post era exatamente o que meu pai está
    procurando para seu trabalho da faculdade . Vou indicar agora
    mesmo . Muito obrigado

  93. Olá ! Este blog não poderia ser escrito de melhor maneira !.
    Agradeço-lhe por partilhar!

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