Dr. Charles C. Brinkley, a Fort Worth, Texas, banker, and former member of the Hardin-Simmons University Board of Trustees, died Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012, in Fort Worth.
In addition to his service as an HSU Trustee, Brinkley twice served on the HSU Board of Development, and was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from HSU in 1994.
"Dr. Brinkley was a devoted supporter of HSU,” says university president, Dr. Lanny Hall. “He was introduced to HSU by one of his best friends, Dr. Jack Terry, a former assistant professor of religious education and Bible at HSU. Dr. Brinkley's service to the university spanned many years -- including 18 years on the Board of Trustees. He served on the presidential search committee that recommended Dr. Fletcher for the presidency of Hardin-Simmons. His distinguished service to our university will be long remembered."
Dr. Jesse Fletcher, HSU president emeritus, says of Brinkley, “Charles was an exemplary and successful businessman and family man, whose faith permeated every area of his life. Charles was a personal friend who epitomized our goals at HSU, which he dearly loved and enthusiastically supported. He will be greatly missed.”
Brinkley was born June 27, 1926, in Weatherford, Texas, to C.E. and Helen Wilson Brinkley. After graduation from Weatherford High School, he attended Weatherford College, where he was elected student body president. Both schools later recognized him as an outstanding alumnus.
As a pre-med student, he was offered a job at the M&F State Bank in Weatherford where he began a 65-year career in banking, retiring in February 2009.
While attending Weatherford College, he met Pauline Cranford, whom he married Sept. 12, 1945. After Weatherford College, Brinkley attended Texas Christian University, later teaching classes in banking and finance at TCU and the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at SMU.
In 1952, Brinkley moved to First National Bank of Weatherford and in 1961 moved to North Richland Hills, Texas, where he served as founding president of Northeast National Bank. Northeast became the flagship of a holding company, Northeast Bancshares, later named Texas United Bancorp, which merged into Allied Bancshares (now Wells Fargo). On Jan. 1, 1987, he began 22 years at Liberty Bank.
During his 64 years of banking, he served in numerous positions with the Texas and American Bankers Associations. He led the petition drive and election campaign to create what is now Tarrant County College and served as the founding chairman of the Birdville Education Foundation, and in recognition of decades of involvement with the North Richland Hills Public Library, the children's library is named for him and his wife, Polly.
Brinkley was a longtime member of the Weatherford Lions Club, sponsoring over 300 men and women to join him in service to the community. He served as the 2-E2 Lion’s Club district governor. In recent years, he was honored by the Northeast-Richland Lions Club with a Melvin Jones Fellowship, a life membership and a scholarship awarded by the club in his name to college students demonstrating the greatest financial need.
Active in Texas Baptist work even as a young man, he served in the Baptist Brotherhood in the 1940s and 1950s, twice on the executive board of the Baptist General Convention of Texas.
Brinkley was deeply involved in his church as well. At North Richland Hills Baptist Church, he organized a men's chorus, which grew from eight members to around 65 vocalists who sang in numerous churches and other venues throughout Texas and beyond until the mid-1980s.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Dorothy Reeder. He is survived by his wife, Polly; son, Michael and wife, Jamie Bodiford Brinkley; sister, Wanda Baker and husband, Paul; and numerous nephews, nieces and cousins.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions be made to the Brinkley Scholarship Fund at Hardin-Simmons University, 2200 Hickory, Abilene, Texas 79698.
Memorial contributions may also be made to the Weatherford College Foundation for the Charles Brinkley and Pauline Cranford Brinkley Scholarship Fund, 225 College Park Drive, Weatherford, Texas 76086; or the Northeast Lions Foundation, Box 820215, North Richland Hills, Texas 76182.
A memorial service was held Friday, January 4, 2013, at North Fort Worth Baptist Church, 5801 N. Interstate 35W, with a visitation following at the church. Interment was at Perrin Memorial Park Cemetery.