“A society grows great when men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.”
Sitting in the sanctuary waiting for the services to begin, I was reminded of that Greek proverb. I’ve always been drawn to the imagery of that saying and have thought of times when I’ve enjoyed the shade provided by the stewardship of those who have come before me. Few young Texas prosecutors may recognize the name Dan Boulware, but have no doubt: They, along with the rest of us, are sitting in the shade of some of Dan’s selfless husbandry.
And so it was on a Saturday in mid-March, past an overflow crowd of family and friends gathered at the First United Methodist Church in Cleburne to celebrate the life and many accomplishments of Dan Boulware. Dan’s service to his community and his profession was as tireless as it was without the need for acknowledgment or personal credit. No finer example of “servant leader” will you ever find.
Dan began his prosecutor career as Johnson County Attorney, serving from 1976 to 1984. He was then elected District Attorney for the 18th Judicial District, covering Johnson and Somervell Counties, where he served two terms.
Dan’s quiet brand of leadership was on display during his tenure as President of the Texas District and County Attorneys Association in 1991. His professional excellence was recognized when he was selected the State Bar Prosecutor of the Year in 1992. He was a stalwart in his church community and served for many years on the board of trustees of his beloved alma mater, Texas Wesleyan University.
Perhaps Dan’s greatest skill was on display as a negotiator. He was always able to see and appreciate all sides of an issue, and his lack of personal hubris bestowed great credibility. I was able to see his magic at work on countless occasions during often-tense legislative negotiations, and time and again Dan found a way to achieve common ground.
In the prosecution community, the hardiest tree of Dan’s planting will no doubt be through his founding efforts on behalf of the Texas District and County Attorneys Foundation. Countless generations of prosecutors to come will benefit from his work.
Thanks, Dan. You will be missed, but as we enjoy this shade you’ve supplied, you’ll always be remembered.