Letters to the University Community

Death of Wilhelmina Robertson

January 29, 2009

The University of Houston family is saddened to learn of the death on Monday of Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Smith, matriarch of the Cullen family and one of our most devoted friends and supporters. Mrs. Smith was the last of the surviving children of Hugh Roy Cullen and Lillie Cranz Cullen, UH's founding family and first major benefactors. Wilhelmina's first husband, Corbin J. Robertson, Sr., who died in 1991, was a strong supporter of early Cougar athletics programs. His name graces our sports stadium. Their children - Wilhelmina E. "Beth" Robertson, former chair of the UH System Board of Regents; Lillie T. Robertson, friend and supporter of UH arts programs; Corbin J. Robertson, Jr., advocate for the Texas Center for Superconductivity; Carroll Robertson Ray, current member of the Board of Regents; and Alison S. Robertson Baumann - continue to this day the tradition of service and philanthropy that has been the hallmark of the Cullen family for decades.

Besides her children, Mrs. Smith leaves behind her husband Edgar A. Smith, Jr., and a host of grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and many other family members.

I know you join me in expressing our deepest and most heartfelt condolences to Mr. Smith and the extended Cullen family at the passing of this most beloved and remarkable lady.

Renu Khator