Gary Keith

I wrote an op ed piece for Hightower on farm policy. And you never wrote something for Hightower that he just took and put out with his name on it. I can still see him standing at his desk with that black pen..

For the next two years I directed the nuclear waste studies project… I was back and forth to Amarillo and Hereford. And I did a lot of speaking. The project changed as the needs changed. When transportation of nuclear waste became a real possible issue, Hightower had me going around the state to whip up interest and opposition to the nuclear waste plan. Because the stuff would be transported through their community. So I spoke in Wichita Falls and Odessa, San Antonio, Houston. There wasn’t that much response in the areas out like that. But for the two years that I was really doing a lot of work in Amarillo and Hereford, it was a great community that had already developed. Julie Brodie had been working with them and I stepped in. We did workshops for the media. When DOE (Department of Energy) came in, they had to do public meetings. We helped get people there to testify. It really was much more Tonya (Kleuskens) and Delbert (Devins) and the people on the ground than it was me. But here they had a state official who was sympathetic and helping them as much as we could.

Gary Keith began writing articles for the Texas Observer while Jim Hightower was editor. He joined TDA in the summer of ‘84. The National High School debate topic that year was farm policy. His first task was to develop a resource book for high school debaters for farm policy. For the following two years Gary directed the nuclear waste studies project. When Yucca Mountain, Nevada, was selected as the site for the nation’s High Level Nuclear Waste Dump, Gary shifted to working on uranium mill tailings and low level nuclear waste dumps and their effect on local Texans.

Picture of Gary Keith