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He Liked Big Things


Terry Todd was a man of many talents and grand visions. As a fifth-generation Texan he loved his family; Austin, here he grew up; and The University of Texas, where he took two degrees.  It was, in fact, during the writing of his doctoral dissertation on the history of weight training that he discovered that few academic libraries held research material in strength and lifting and decided to see if he could do something to help. For the remainder of his life, Terry (and after they married, his wife Jan Todd) became collectors of weight training and physical fitness materials, bringing their collection to the University of Texas in 1983. As the photos and captions on the adjacent walls explain, the Todd’s quest to turn their original collection into what is now The H.J. Lutcher Stark Center for Physical Culture and Sports took them more than 30 years, and required the support of many, very generous on-and off-campus friends and donors.

While the creation of the Stark Center will be remembered as Terry’s great legacy, he did nothing on a small scale, also making significant contributions as a writer, coach, academic, sports administrator, and even filmmaker. His willingness to work hard, and never weaken in pursuit of his goals, has enabled all of us to stand in this space today.