Lecture series named after outspoken Texas iconoclast

In honor of Amy Goodman’s lecture last Tuesday for the Maverick Lecture Series, it is good to take a look at the man behind it: Maury Maverick, Jr.

A lifelong friend of Maverick, Allan Kownslar, professor of history, wrote a book about Maverick titled “Texas Iconoclast.”

Maverick was well known, but many people disliked him for his radical stances on issues and his iconoclastic approach of voicing his strong opinions.

“He was a lifelong liberal Democrat, a combat U.S. Marine officer, a six-year state legislator, a civil rights attorney and a very outspoken journalist for the San Antonio Express News,” Kownslar said.

Kownslar said Maverick’s passions included freedom of speech, opposing censorship of books and preventing racial or political discrimination.

Maverick is famous in San Antonio for writing hundreds of outspoken columns for the San Antonio Express News. Kownslar emphasized Maverick’s extensive pro bono work, describing his unselfish attitude toward helping people move forward. In 1991, Maverick was awarded the American Bar Association’s John Minor Wisdom Public Interest and Professional Award for taking on over 300 pro bono cases.

“He defended 17 Trinity University male students who were conscientious objectors during the Vietnam War at his own expense,” Kownslar said.

Maverick died in 2003, and his funeral was held in Parker Chapel on Trinity’s campus. His wife, who continues to support her late husband’s legacy, attended Goodman’s lecture.

The Maverick Lecture Series was established and is financed by William and Salome Scanlan, friends of Maverick. The series’ goal is to explore topics that made Maverick famous, looking at how he shaped civil discourse on issues like freedom of speech and racial discrimination.