Hall of Distinction Class of 1984-1985

Professor Murray F. Hawkins, Jr., has earned great respect and many honors, both as an engineer and as an educator. Professor Hawkins received the B.S. in chemistry (1938) and the M.S. in physics (1940) at LSU, and went to the Carter Oil Company’s research laboratories in Tulsa, doing geophysical and geochemical research. He spent World War II as an officer in the United States Navy, in such places ad Hawaii and the Solomons. After the war, he joined the research and development staff of Ethyl Corporation as a physicist.

One year later, in 1946, Professor Hawkins joined the faculty of the Department of Petroleum Engineering at LSU, beginning his long and illustrious career in higher education. In 1964 Professor Hawkins was made the heard of the Department of Petroleum Engineering, a post he held until his retirement in 1977. During his more that 30 years with the University, Professor Hawkins had a deep and lasting influence on hundreds of students; men and women who today hold posts of importance throughout the world in the petroleum and petroleum-related industries. Many of these former students wrote to endorse Professor Hawkins’ nomination for membership in the LSU Engineering Hall of Distinction, and all spoke in glowing terms of his high and exacting professional standards and his great and varied abilities as an engineer and as a teacher.

Professor Hawkins retained close contacts with industry during his tenure at LSU, working during the summers and in his free time in a variety of positions. He served as a lecturer in reservoir engineering for the professional schools of many major oil companies, and as a consultant in areas ranging from cementing practices to man power needs and utilization. Professor Hawkins has served as the director of and instructor at LSU’s geology field camp in Colorado; as an oil and gas consultant to the LSU Board of Supervisors; as a Distinguished Lecturer for the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE); as the principal investigator for a major ERDA (now the U.S. Department of Energy) study of the geopressured/geothermal energy resources of Louisiana; as a member of panels commissioned by the President of the United States, the Secretary of the Interior, and the National Research Council; and in a number of positions dealing with accreditation of schools, including ten years as inspector of petroleum engineering curricula for accreditation by the Engineers’ Council for Professional Development (now the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology). He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Howell Petroleum Company, Houston, Texas.

Another element adding to Professor Hawkins’ prominence is his textbook, Applied Petroleum Reservoir Engineering, with coauthor B. C. Craft, which has been continually in print for more than 26 years and has gone through 24 printings. Prentice-Hall, Inc., the publisher, notes that “Such a record of success is exceedingly rare in the publishing business.” Also printed in Spanish and Russian, the book is currently being revised and updated in order to serve many future generations of engineering students.

Professor Hawkins is a member of a number of professional and honorary organizations and the author of more than 15 technical papers and other publications. He has received many awards and honors in his career, including a Halliburton Award for Teaching Excellence; the 1976 Mineral Industry Education Medal from the American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers; the 1979 John Franklin Carll Award; and the 1980 Lester C. Uren Award from the SPE. He has been named an LSU Alumni Distinguished Member of the SPE. He is a licensed professional engineer in the states of Louisiana and Mississippi.
Murray F. Hawkins, Jr., has had a long career in two professions—engineering and education—and has earned great honor and distinction in both.