Thomas R. Docking (1954-2017)
Thomas R. Docking was born in Lawrence Kansas in 1954. He was the son of Governor Robert Docking and Meredith Gear Docking. Tom graduated from the University of Kansas with a B.A. in political science and economics. He earned his M.B.A. and J.D. from the University of Kansas School of Law in June 1980. Tom dedicated his life to making Kansas, and his hometown of Wichita, a better place.
From 1983 to 1987, Tom served as Lt. Governor of Kansas, specializing in tax issues for the state. After graduating from law school in 1980, Tom maintained a law practice at Morris Laing for over 35 years, practicing in the areas of business and estate planning, corporate, banking, real estate transactions and taxation. In addition to his law practice, Tom managed to impact the state and his local community by volunteering his time for service on various boards, including:
- Member, Board of Governors, University of Kansas School of Law;
- Member, Steering Committee, Campaign Kansas – KU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences program;
- Chairman, Campaign Kansas – KU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences program;
- Chairman, Kansas Tax Review Commission;
- Vice-commander Kansas Calvary;
- Member, Board of Directors, Kansas Easter Seals-Goodwill Industries;
- Chairman, Wichita Water Conservation Task Force (developed rules for water conservation);
- Chairman, Advisory Board for the Docking Institute of Public Affairs, Ft. Hays State University;
- Chairman, Board of Directors, Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau;
- Member, Board of Directors, St. Francis Foundation;
- Trustee, Emporia State University School of Business;
- Member, Board of Directors, Wichita Downtown Development Corporation;
- Director, Financial Fitness Foundation (a 501(c)(3) established by Jill Docking to ensure financial literacy in schools, grades K-12);
- Member, Board of Directors, Kansas High Technology Task Force;
- Member, Board of Directors, Liberian Widows Initiative (a microlender in Ghana, Liberia);
- Chairman, Allocations Committee, United Way of the Plains;
- Chairman, Board of Directors, United Way of the Plains.
A few of Tom’s noteworthy contributions and achievements include:
- Representation of the City of Wichita in fashioning legislation for funding the Gilbert & Mosley Groundwater Pollution Matter. This project was awarded the Ford Foundation’s Top 10 Innovations in Public Policy in the U.S. for that year;
- Funded the Docking Gateway Arch on the University of Kansas campus;
- Life-member of the University of Kansas Alumni Association;
- Co-sponsor of the Docking Lecture Series, Southwest College in Winfield, KS;
- Awarded the Robert Brock Medal of Distinction by the Kansas Democratic Party (this honor is the highest award that can be bestowed by the Kansas Democratic Party);
- Tom and his wife, Jill, were awarded the 2008 Outstanding Philanthropists by the Wichita Business Journal.
Tom was a great lawyer and will be forever missed by Morris Laing!
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