Christopher C. Gibbs, nationally renowned homebuilder and developer, received an Honorary Degree from the University of Oklahoma in a virtual ceremony on Aug. 7. During the virtual ceremony, over 100 members of the OU community tuned in to congratulate Gibbs, who was joined by family and loved ones at his home in southern California.
For more than 50 years, Gibbs has generously given back to the university – a university that helped shape his life and career.
Gibbs earned his bachelor of science in architecture from OU in 1967. He founded PLC Land Co. and PLC Christopher Homes in 1992, which have been responsible for the planning, financing, design, construction, marketing and sales of more than 15,000 homes throughout southern California, Florida and Texas.
“Throughout his extraordinary career, Christopher Gibbs has steadfastly supported his alma mater, particularly through his investment of time and resources in the College of Architecture and our students,” said OU President Joseph Harroz Jr. “His distinguished achievements and exceptional dedication to OU are a great inspiration to our entire university community. He is truly deserving, and we are proud to recognize him with the university’s highest honor.”
In 2017, Gibbs provided the largest gift in the history of the College of Architecture, which effectively doubled the college’s endowment, allowing the college to greatly expand research, fellowships, guest lectures and learning opportunities for students. In appreciation of his support of the college and its students, the college was named the Christopher C. Gibbs College of Architecture.
Gibbs and his wife, Ania Gibbs, also endowed an interactive learning center in Gould Hall that features state-of-the-art technology to help students collaborate and present their work. The couple has also supported OU architecture students through scholarships and enrichment funding for field trips and invited guest lectures.
“Chris’ contributions to the college have made an OU education even more affordable for countless undergraduate and graduate students in all of our seven programs,” said Hans Butzer, dean of the Christopher C. Gibbs College of Architecture. “He truly understands how important it is to help recruit and retain the best faculty as another means to further support our students.”
Over the years, Gibbs has frequently returned to campus to meet with students and lead lectures in studio courses, where he has spoken about his experiences as an architect, builder and businessman.
In recognition of his superior dedication to OU, he received the OU Regents’ Alumni Award in 2017. He has also received numerous regional and national awards for design, merchandising, marketing and sales excellence.
“Chris is an embodiment of what we wish for in all of our graduates,” Butzer said. “He is entrepreneurial, ambitious and adds value to our communities.”