Fred Underwood a commissioner of the Texas Transportation Commission, which oversees statewide activities of the Texas Department of Transportation, spoke at Dumas Noon Lions Club on November 4, 2010. Fred Underwood made a surprise presentation to a special person that is a very deserving member of the club and the community. This individual was Milton Pax, Moore County Commissioner who was recognized as one of those special individuals who have freely given of time, energy, support and vision toward accomplishing important transportation projects in his community, in his region and in his part of the state.
In the early days of the 20th century, anyone who helped build roads was called a Road Hand. Today’s Road Hands are citizens who have given their time, energy, and vision to help improve transportation throughout the state. In bestowing this award, TxDOT recognizes its friends who have helped build one of the best transportation systems in the world. Luther DeBerry, a former State Highway Engineer, created the Road Hand award in 1973 as the highest tribute to public-spirited citizens who championed transportation projects in their community.
Pax is a retired small business owner involved in the Ports to Plains Alliance, the Dumas Overpass commission, the 1st Vice President of the Dumas Noon Lions Club, Moore County Commissioner and he was the 2005 recipient of the Outstanding Citizen of the Year. Fred Underwood said "Milton is such a natural choice because of his community involvement and leadership qualities." He helped shaped the area's transportation system by serving as a board member of the Ports to Plains on US 287 Milton Pax helped secure the four lanes on US287 from Dalhart to the New Mexico state line in which three of four phases are completed. Pax also worked for nine years with the city of Dumas, Moore County and Dumas/Moore County Chamber of Commerce to secure funding for a new railroad overpass. "His tireless efforts resulted in the funding for this much needed project for your area" stated Underwood. Pax has also been instrumental in getting the airport remodeled and the runway increased and widen by finding funding from TxDot and through corporate donation. Milton Pax will be among those names of Road Hand award recipients that are inscribed on the Road Hand Hall of Honor plaque which hangs prominently in the foyer of the historic Dewitt C. Green Highway Building in Austin.