Michael Herbert Wallis'63


 It has been said, "reading a Michael Wallis book is like dancing to a romantic ballad. He offers his hand and gently guides you across the floor, swaying to the song of the American West."

A best-selling author and award-winning reporter, Michael is a historian and biographer of the American West who has gained national notoriety as a speaker and voice talent. In 2006 Michael’s voice was heard in CARS, an animated feature film from Pixar Studios, also featuring Paul Newman, Bonnie Hunt, Owen Wilson, Michael Keaton, and George Carlin. Michael served as a consultant for Pixar and he and his wife, Suzanne Fitzgerald Wallis, co-authored The Art of Cars, a book chronicling the making of the motion picture.

A storyteller who likes nothing better than transporting audiences across time and space, Michael has published seventeen books, including Route 66: The Mother Road, credited with sparking the resurgence of interest in the highway. In 2007, two Wallis books — Billy the Kid: The Endless Ride and The Lincoln Highway: Coast to Coast from Times Square to the Golden Gate — were published by W.W. Norton. Other Wallis books include The Real Wild West: The 101 Ranch and the Creation of the American West; Mankiller: A Chief and Her People; Way Down Yonder In The Indian Nation; and Pretty Boy: The Life and Times of Charles Arthur Floyd. His work has appeared in hundreds of national and international magazines and newspapers, including Time, Life, People, Smithsonian, The New Yorker, and The New York Times.

Michael has been nominated three times for the Pulitzer Prize and was a nominee for the National Book Award. He has won many prestigious awards and honors, such as the Will Rogers Spirit Award, the Western Heritage Award from the National Cowboy Hall & Western Heritage Museum, the Oklahoma Book Award from the Oklahoma Center for the Book, and the Best Western Non-fiction Award from the Western Writers of America.

Michael was inducted into the Writers Hall of Fame of America and the Oklahoma Professional Writer's Hall of Fame and was the first inductee into the Oklahoma Route 66 Hall of Fame. He received the Arrell Gibson Lifetime Achievement Award from the Oklahoma Center for the Book as well as the Lynn Riggs Award and the first John Steinbeck Award.

Since 1982, Michael and his wife, Suzanne Fitzgerald Wallis, have made their
home in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

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