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Assault and Flattery

T. J. Gibson

T.J. Gibson, "A toast to a roast"

Special mention must be made of former Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Associate Professor Emeritus T. J. Gibson III. A 1948 UT Law alumnus, T. J. Gibson was first employed by the Law School as an instructor assistant librarian in 1948. Although he left in 1952 to serve as State Librarian, T. J. Gibson returned to his assistant librarian post at UT Law in 1954. He became assistant dean of students in 1956 and then associate dean of student affairs in 1969, retiring in 1984.

While other faculty such as Dean Page Keeton were heavily involved with Assault & Flattery, T. J. Gibson approached the performances with extraordinary gusto and a willingness to do just about anything, so long as it was funny. According to a 1979 Townes Hall Notes article titled “A Toast to a Roast,” Gibson was “synonymous with the event.” T. J. Gibson, 1980 For the sake of the show, T. J. Gibson donned an array of ridiculous costumes, including leopard skins, a superman outfit, thermal underwear (to play a streaker in 1974), a tutu, an ape costume and even sequined disco clothes with the words “Disco Stud” emblazoned on the back. In recognition of his good-natured efforts the Student Bar Association dedicated the 1984 Assault & Flattery in his honor. Additionally, the SBA dedicated Law Week to T. J. Gibson twice, in 1982 and as a shared honor with Dean John F. Sutton, Jr. in 1984.

T. J. Gibson died one year after his retirement in 1985 at the age of 67 following a brief illness. T. J. Gibson’s successor, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs Susana I. Aleman continued T. J. Gibson’s tradition of appearing in Assault & Flattery productions.