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‘Remember the Titans’ Coach to Keynote 2013 Black Issues Conference

Press release from the University of Tennessee; January 11, 2013: 

Remember the Titans coach Herman Boone will be the keynote speaker at this year’s Black Issues Conference on February 2.

“We Are America: Divided We Fall. Together We Stand” is the theme of the conference, which will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the Carolyn P. Brown University Center. The event is free and open to students, faculty, staff, and members of the community.

Black Issues Conference is held to raise awareness of issues affecting the African-American community, explain how they impact others and brainstorm with students to come up with solutions.

The event will consist of three workshop sessions and a luncheon where Boone will deliver the keynote address. The day will conclude with a 3:00 p.m. reception where Boone will be available for pictures and autographs.

To attend, register online by January 25.

In 1971, Boone was appointed as the head football coach at TC Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia. His challenge was to unite black and white players in a recently integrated school and mold them into the Titans football team.

Boone and his white assistant coach, Bill Yoast, clashed at first, but were able to put aside their prejudices to whip their team into shape. They compiled a 13-0 record and went on to win the state championship.

Now retired, Boone travels the country talking about respect, teamwork, community involvement and the importance of character. Boone will address the topics of diversity and his own experience of becoming a Titan at this year’s event.

Shawnboda Mead, associate director of Multicultural Student Life, said the planning committee chose the conference slogan, “We Are America: Divided We Fall. Together We Stand,” to make the event more inclusive and welcoming of all members of the campus community.

For more information on the Black Issues Conference, contact the Office of Multicultural Student Life at 865-974-6861.

The Black Issues Conference is made possible through the efforts of the Black Issues Conference Planning Committee, UT Chapter of the NCAAP, Charlie Lemmons Endowment, Black Cultural Programming Committee, Office of Multicultural Student Life, Division of Student Life, UT Bookstore, Office of Equity and Diversity, Commission for Blacks, Student Government Association, and the UT Black Alumni Council.

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Press Releases

Audit: Former Wrestling Coach at Kenwood High Improperly Withheld School Funds

Press Release from Tennessee Comptroller of Treasury Justin Wilson, Feb. 24, 2010:

A former wrestling coach at Clarksville’s Kenwood High School lost or misappropriated money from fundraisers and equipment sales, an investigation by the state Comptroller’s Division of Municipal Audit has found.

The former coach sold students “player packages” with sweatshirts, gym bags and other items. However, some students complained that they did not receive all of the promised items. School officials eventually had to refund more than $1,000 to students for undelivered items.

Because the former coach didn’t maintain adequate records, auditors were unable to determine how much money was actually collected, how much was spent for school purposes and how much was missing.

Also, the former coach turned over to the school’s bookkeeper only a portion of the money collected from a candy sale and a cookie dough sale. Auditors determined that the fundraisers should have netted more than $2,000 above the amount the former coach submitted.

Auditors were also unable to locate two first aid kits, valued at $300 each, and a wrestling trophy that had been kept in the former coach’s office.

“It is always disappointing to me when someone in a position of public trust violates that trust,” said Comptroller Justin P. Wilson. “It’s reprehensible when that violation involves money intended to support school programs. Schools already have enough financial challenges during these difficult economic times without money being lost or misappropriated.”

“Instances such as this one demonstrate how important it is for teachers and coaches to keep and maintain their records involving fundraisers, school sales and donations,” said Dennis Dycus, Director of the Division of Municipal Audit. “Adequate record keeping not only helps to ensure that a school program receives all the money it should, but it also alerts school personnel, early on, that money may be missing or stolen before it is too late and thousands of dollars are gone.”