University of Tulsa Honors Distinguished Alumni

James McGill

Three University of Tulsa alumni noted for their achievements in law, business and medicine will be honored during Homecoming on Friday, Sept. 23, at this year’s Distinguished Alumni Dinner. The event, recognizing 2005 Distinguished Alumni Charles Owens, James McGill and Dr. John Forrest, will be held at the Donald W. Reynolds Center on the TU campus.

Three years after graduating from the University of Tulsa College of Law, Owens became Oklahoma’s first African-American assistant attorney general in 1963. He is one of few lawyers to share in the prestige of arguing before the U.S. Supreme Court and is also distinguished as the first African-American to sit on the state’s district court bench. In 1983, his colleagues elected him as presiding judge of the Oklahoma Canadian Counties Judicial Administrative District. He has also served on the Appellate Division of the Court on the Judiciary and as District Judge of Oklahoma County. In 2002, he received the Lifetime Achievement in Law Award from TU’s College of Law and was honored with a scholarship endowed in his name.

McGill started McGill Environ-mental Systems after earning a chemical engineering degree from TU in 1965 and working at Dresser Engineering for five years. He developed designs for air and water reduction pollution equipment and was called upon by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help draft the new agency’s regulations. Four years later, in 1974, he received the first of 25 U.S. and foreign patents awarded to him. In a span of five years, his company went from revenues of less than $1 million to an excess of $30 million. McGill sold his company in 1986 and has since used his investment and venture capital experience to help start several others, including SciFit, ProShot Golf and, currently, Anyware Mobile Solutions. He sits on TU’s Board of Trustees and chairs the Technology Transfer Committee.

Forrest is a physician and leader in the research of interstitial cystitis, helping to alleviate patients’ pain associated with the disease. After graduating from TU in 1972, he attended medical school at the University of Oklahoma, receiving a degree in 1976. Forrest was an American Cancer Society Fellow at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Institute in New York before returning to Tulsa to practice urologic oncology as well as general urology. In addition to operating a private practice with Urologic Specialists of Oklahoma Inc., he is a clinical associate professor of urology at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. He has published more than 40 scientific papers, presented at more than 50 scientific meetings and speaks nationally on urologic oncology and interstitial cystitis. Forrest recently completed his term as chief of staff at St. John Medical Center and will serve as president of the South Central Section of the American Urologic Association in 2007.

For information on sponsoring the Distinguished Alumni dinner or purchasing a table, please contact Sandy Willmann at the Office of Alumni Relations, 918-631-2092. Full details about TU Homecoming 2005 are available at

Updated 08-20-2005

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