Gordon Bourland

2013 TxABA Award - Career Contributions to Behavior Analysis in Texas

Gordon Bourland

I know Gordon well, and I am honored to introduce him. He has a great sense of humor, he is someone we all like to be around. He has told me that I cannot talk about some things. Too bad, I know plenty of funny stories, but I will not repeat them today.

In 1975-77, not that long after Science and Human Behavior was published, Gordon worked in the Multihandicapped Project at Richmond State School, where he was a key member of an outstanding behavior analysis program. It was during this time hat he and Michael Smith wrote Behavioral Teaching Strategies, a Keller-style self-paced PSI book published by the TEA Grant. He and his colleagues trained hundreds of public school teachers across the State of Texas at a ime when teachers desperately needed such training.

Gordon became my mentor in behavior analysis in 1975 and he still is. Over the years, Gordon left RSS, got his doctorate 1n 1977 at UT Arlington with Jim Kopp as his mentor. Then he did a post-doc at Johns Hopkins and the Kennedy Institute.

Gordon's leadership, service, and regular participation in the Texas Association for Behavior Analysis go back to being a part of the founding of TxABA, a loyal member of TxABA and ABAI, back to the days of the Blackstone Hotel in Chicago at MABA. The late Jim Kopp was Gordon's mentor, so we who knew Dr. Kopp and those of you who know of Dr. Kopp are aware that Gordon learned from one of the best professors and one of the best human beings in our field.

Gordon has completed a two-year term as President of the TxABA He is the only person in TxABA's history to serve two terms as President. As a two-year President (he is now on the TxABA Council), he has done a lot officially and unofficially for TxABA's membership.

Gordon and the TxABA Council established an awards component to the TxABA program, honoring the late Donald Whaley, Joel Greenspoon, and Jim Kopp as pioneers in behavior analysis. These three guys were great, leaders in our field. The TxABA award to the families of these three great men known nationally and internationally as pioneers, and other awards to Janet Ellis, Sigrid Glenn, and Jeff Enzinna was a step toward preserving the history of behavior analysis in Texas, while informing new TxABA members of our heritage.

Gordon along with Anna and others also have worked tirelessly attempting to establish strong legislative and state agency contacts, laying the groundwork for legislative efforts good for behavior analysis. There are many more achievements, but let me say his leadership has been remarkable, collaborative, inclusive (including women and members of diverse minorities), and involving people who he knew had different opinions when he was President of TxABA.

Gordon has been a full-time practitioner of behavior analysis since 1998, serving children with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their families. Before that he was director of behavioral services at Fort Worth State School, he was at Colin Anderson Center in West Virginia, Dallas County MHMR prior to becoming a full-time practitioners.

Gordon is being recognized today for the TxABA Career Award for his many contributions to the advancement of behavior analysis in Texas, for his leadership, his mentoring, his teaching, and his always being there for TxABA. As Anna just said, Gordon seems to be everywhere helping TxABA.

Gordon is a man of character, highly respected, a strong supporter of ABAi, TxABA, and behavior analysis as a profession. Gordon it is a great honor for me to present you with this award. We love you, Gordon.

Presented by Don Williams, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Former TxABA President and Council Member