New scholarship honors Amarillo businessman


Alyssa Gonzales

Joe Bob McCartt had strong ties to the Paul and Virginia Engler College of Business.

A scholarship has recently been established through the Paul and Virginia Engler College of Business to honor the late Joe Bob Mcartt. The Joe Bob McCartt Memorial Scholarship was created after the passing of the well-known commercial real estate broker in December of 2020.

“The College of Business felt like because of his willingness to help the college, and even though it was a verbal commitment that he made, but he couldn’t live to make it happen as to honor him, we established this scholarship,” said Dr. Amjad Abdullat, Dean of the Engler College of Business.

Though McCartt did not graduate from WTAMU, he attended West Texas State University and would later graduate from the University of Mississippi in 1971.

“He adopted WT, if you will, as it is his alma mater…many of his business partners were WT graduates,” Abdullat said.

McCartt was a successful businessman that was respected by many in both the WTAMU and Amarillo community.

According to McCartt’s business website, “His successes include the Chase Tower purchase in 2006 at 60% occupancy and sold in 2009 at 90% occupancy. Sequels to the Chase Tower include the Amarillo Building, Wellington Square Shopping Center, Embassy Suites Amarillo, the Hyatt Place & AC Marriott in Bricktown Oklahoma City, 3501 MedCenter, Netplex, the Former Amarillo Air Base, and several commercial business district developments in Amarillo.”

To qualify for this scholarship, students must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. The scholarship is set to be available in the fall 2021 semester. First-generation students and students that display financial need will also qualify.

“The business degrees are in high demand both undergraduate and graduate. So what this will do, obviously, is help defray the costs for a student or students who want to major in business,” said Dr. Todd Rasberry, Vice President for Philanthropy and External Relations.

After the news of McCartt’s passing, many of his friends, business partners and family members got together and did what they felt would honor his legacy.

“Alan Rhodes [Mcartt’s lawyer and best friend] sent 200 letters to his friends and his business partners, saying, you know, ‘The College of Business, the Paul and Virginia Engler College of Business is putting the first $25,000 and that’s where the donations start coming, and his family also put some money as well, his two sons,” Abdullat said.

This scholarship was created not only to memorialize a beloved member of the community, but to also give WTAMU students the opportunity to further their education.

For more information regarding both the scholarship and the College of Business, visit their web page.