Allan ’78/’82 and Emily Meador ’06
Allan Meador ’78/’82 came to Hardin-Simmons for the Cowboy Band experience. Plus, it was far enough from his home in Hobbs, New Mexico, that his dad wouldn’t expect him to drive home on weekends to work. He already had five or six slightly older friends attending HSU and had visited the school to see them. The Cowboy Band was always the highlight of those visits, as music played a big part in his life. He played the trombone in his high school band and wanted to continue playing in college. Allan says, “When I looked at HSU, it was immediately home.”
Allan’s father owned several music stores including White Music in Lubbock, Texas, and Lee Music in Hobbs, New Mexico. While growing up, Allan learned to repair and tune pianos. Some of his favorite Hardin-Simmons classes were those with Dr. Andy Patterson. Mr. Lawson Hagar ’67, the vibrant Cowboy Band director at the time, made a deep impression on his life as a mentor and has since become a good friend. Finally, in his piano lessons with Dr. Thurman Morrison ’37, even though Allan modestly says he wasn’t all that good at learning the piano, he was able to connect with Dr. Morrison, who rebuilt pianos as a hobby. Connecting through that common interest helped a little country boy find his way.
When asked about antics or funny memories about his time on campus, Allan didn’t have any such stories, saying he was in the Cowboy Band and all they did was study.
Allan arrived at HSU as a music major. Most music-related degree plans involved five full years of challenging coursework. It took three or four years of study before he realized music, although a great hobby for him, was not the career he wanted. After earning his Bachelor of Music degree in Music Theory and Composition in 1978, he switched tracks, took a heavy load of leveling work, and earned his M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing from Hardin-Simmons in 1982.
Diploma in hand, Allan was promptly hired by the Dunigan Operating Company as an accountant, giving him a start on an oil and gas career. After working for Dunigan for about seven years, he launched his own business acquiring oil and gas producing properties. Allan and his wife, Emily, were introduced by their mutual hair-dresser. Emily, who grew up in Abilene, earned her undergraduate degree from McMurry University, and went on to HSU to obtain her Master of Education degree in Gifted & Talented Education. She had a fulfilling career as a teacher and, although now retired from the Abilene ISD, still tutors young learners in math.
All three of the Meadors’ daughters attended and graduated from Hardin-Simmons (Allan laughingly says he firmly instructed each to stay away from the Cowboy Band guys). The Meadors faithfully served in their church, Pioneer Drive Baptist Church, and raised five children. They enjoy doting on their four grandkids.
They have also continued to be strongly engaged with Hardin-Simmons since their graduations. Both serve on numerous boards and committees. Allan is a past Board of Young Associates President and currently serves on the Board of Development after spending nine years as an HSU Trustee. Recently, Allan was elected as President of the School of Music Foundation. He has been instrumental in helping create and launch the Chromatic Society, a new monthly giving society designed to recruit young alumni, in particular, to support HSU’s music programs.
“Hardin-Simmons has always been a major part of my life,” Allan says. “I was at a Homecoming gathering once where we were all sharing why we love HSU. Waiting my turn, I realized I had been at HSU longer than I had been anywhere else in my life. So, Hardin-Simmons has become my roots.
“It really sunk in for the first time, when I became a Trustee, that supporting Hardin-Simmons is Kingdom work. And this Kingdom work is a grass roots level effort. We are scattering young people all over the world, not just in churches but in every type of field,” Allan continues. “Because of our mutual commitment to Christ, I just can’t think of a better endeavor to be committed to than Hardin-Simmons.”