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“Everywhere You Look, UT” Tour, President’s Council to Converge in Oak Ridge

The “Everywhere you look, UT” tour will join together with University of Tennessee President’s Council on Friday, Nov. 19 at 11:30 a.m. EST at the American Museum of Science and Energy (AMSE) to learn more about the UT-Oak Ridge Innovation Institute.

Category: Alumni

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OAK RIDGE – The “Everywhere you look, UT” tour will join together with University of Tennessee President’s Council on Friday, Nov. 19 at 11:30 a.m. EST at the American Museum of Science and Energy (AMSE) to learn more about the UT-Oak Ridge Innovation Institute.

President’s Council members will have the opportunity to hear from UT System President Randy Boyd, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) Director Thomas Zacharia, UT-ORII Director Joan Bienvenue and others.  UT and ORNL created UT-ORII in 2019 to help our nation remain globally competitive and ready to meet emerging scientific and technical challenges. UT-ORII officially launched in 2021 with the hiring of Bienvenue as its first executive director and vice provost. Leveraging an existing partnership that generates more than $50 million in joint research annually, UT-ORII is focused on further aligning UT and ORNL’s expertise and infrastructure with the end goal of establishing:

  • The national model for collaborative interdisciplinary research and workforce development, and
  • Tennessee as the “go-to” place for STEM talent and discovery, especially in areas of the greatest economic impact.

Later that evening, UT President’s Council members will attend the eighth annual President’s Council awards dinner at 7 p.m. at the Knoxville Hilton. UT Knoxville’s Opera Theatre Program will provide the evening’s entertainment and Kasey Funderburg, host and digital media producer in the UT Knoxville athletic department, will serve as the master of ceremonies.

The awards dinner will honor four UT leaders for their service to the University.

“Our campuses across the state have become national leaders in a multitude of areas thanks to the generous giving of these recipients’ time, talents and resources,” UT System President Randy Boyd said. “We owe a great deal of our success as a University system to these individuals.”

Donnie and Terry Smith, both UT Knoxville graduates, will be presented with the Jim and Natalie Haslam Presidential Medal. The culmination of their investments is the Donald and Terry Smith Endowed Chair for International Sustainable Agriculture at the UT Institute of Agriculture, which seeks to provide sustainable solutions for agriculture issues worldwide. Terry Smith is an education graduate from UT and taught in the classroom for several years. Donnie Smith graduated with a degree in animal science, working a broad range of jobs before being asked to lead Tyson Foods company as president and CEO. Thanks to his leadership, today Tyson is the largest U.S. meat producer. The Smith’s have big ideas for solving world hunger—and the couple believe the solution begins at their alma mater.

H.J. Maxedon, Jr., will be honored with the Philanthropist of the Year Award. Maxedon graduated from UT Martin in 1952 and UT Knoxville in 1954. H.J. Maxedon was one of the first scholarship donors and volunteer leaders of the UT Martin McNairy County Center/Selmer when it opened in 1998. Over the past 15 years, he has pledged more than $7 million to the center, making him the largest donor to the UT Martin McNairy County Center and one of the premiere donors of the UT Martin campus.  He currently sits on the UT Martin McNairy County Higher Education Advisory Board.

Lynne Fain, a graduate of UT Knoxville, will receive the President’s Council Service Award. Lynne and her husband, Dr. Walter Fain made a major gift of $1 million to help the University of Tennessee Health Science Center’s College of Dentistry launch a dental training center in Knoxville. Fain’s service to the University of Tennessee spans three decades. She has been an active volunteer, including serving as president of the UT Alumni Association in 2000-01. She also served on the UTAA Women’s Council and UTAA Strategic Planning Steering Committee. She is a member of the UTAA Past Presidents Council, the UTAA Alumni Legislative Council, the Alliance of Women Philanthropists, and the President’s Council.

Timothy L. Tucker Pharm D, FAPhA, alumnus of the University of Tennessee College in Pharmacy in 1988 as a member of the inaugural all PharmD class, will be inducted into the UT Alumni Association Past President’s Council. Tucker is the owner of City Drug Company in Huntingdon, Tenn. He formerly served on the Board of Governors in 2007 and was elected for a three-year term in 2016. He has been a member of the UT Health Science Center Pharmacy Alumni Board, the UTAA Alumni Legislative Council and has served on the UTAA Programming, Engagement and Career Services committees.

About the Awards
The Jim and Natalie Haslam Presidential Medal was first awarded in 2007 to Sen. Howard H. Baker, Jr. In addition to exemplary giving, leadership and service, honorees demonstrate a willingness and ability to motivate others to support the University, show a lifelong commitment to UT and higher education and have personal history of integrity and excellence in all aspects of life. Other previous recipients include Jim and Judy Herbert (2019), Sen. Lamar Alexander (2018), Jim and Sandy Powell (2017), Dr. Bob Kaplan (2016), John and Ann Tickle (2015), the late Hank Lauricella (2014) R. Clayton McWhorter (2013), Andrea Loughry (2012), former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen (2011), Scott L. Probasco Jr. (2010), the late Pat Summitt (2009) and Peyton Manning (2008).

Initiated in 2007, the Philanthropist of the Year Award goes to a donor who has made a significant gift to the University of Tennessee. It recognizes the profound impact a single gift can make to the University. Previous winners include Bill and Rosann Nunnelly (2019), Gary Rollins (2018), Bill Latimer (2017), Jim and Judi Herbert (2016), Jim and Sandy Powell (2015), Donnie and Terry Smith (2014), Dr. Bob Kaplan (2013), Brenda Lawson (2012), Charles and Moll Anderson (2011), John and Ann Tickle (2010), Tom and Kathleen Elam (2009), Barbara and Ralph Hamilton (2008) and Jane O. and David T. Bailey (2007).

The President’s Council Service Award acknowledges exceptional service in the advancement of the University toward the achievement of excellence. Previous recipients include Michael Strickland (2019), Tom Griscom (2018), Waymon Hickman (2017), Phillip Fulmer (2016), Jim Duke (2015), Dr. Phil Wenk (2014), Michael T. Strickland (2013), Bill Blankenship (2012), Jim Powell (2011), Waymon Hickman (2010), Charles and the late Julie Wharton (2009), John Sorey (2008) and Charlie W. Brinkley, Jr. (2007).

Since its inception in 1965, the UT Alumni Association Past President’s Council has served as an advisory council to the alumni association and as a resource for current alumni programs.

About the President’s Council
The President’s Council is a constituency of alumni and friends who understand and support higher education broadly in Tennessee. It is comprised of volunteer leaders who have the opportunity to serve as the University’s premier advocates. The council is the UT System President’s core volunteer leadership group charged with advancing the System’s mission to serve the people of Tennessee and beyond through discovery, communication and application of knowledge necessary to create a cohesive, consistent and unifying system model of advancement.

The University of Tennessee is a statewide system of higher education with campuses in Knoxville, Chattanooga, Martin, Memphis and Pulaski; the UT Space Institute in Tullahoma; the UT Institute of Agriculture with a presence in every Tennessee county; and the statewide Institute for Public Service. The UT system manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory through its UT-Battelle partnership; enrolls about 50,000 students statewide; produces about 10,000 new graduates every year; and represents more than 382,000 alumni around the world.


Melissa Tindell
P267 Andy Holt Tower, 1331 Circle Park, Knoxville, TN 37996

Jennifer Sicking
P265 Andy Holt Tower, 1331 Circle Park, Knoxville, TN 37996

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Category: Alumni