JONESBORO (11/5/09) - The Arkansas State University Athletic Department announced Thursday at a 6:00 p.m. press conference and reception at the Convocation Center that alumni and long-time supporters Scott and Kay Dawson of Memphis have made a $250,000 donation to Red Wolves athletics, which matches the second largest gift in the department's history.
The donation will be used to improve the academic environment for all Arkansas State University student-athletes. A portion of the funds will be used to enhance the Charles F. Luter Family Academic Success Center, which will now include an academic resource center that will be known as "Dawson's Den."
In conjunction with the donation, ASU is also establishing the "Scott and Kay Dawson Ambassador Award" to be presented annually to an outstanding male and female senior student-athlete. The criteria for the award includes but is not limited to excellence in service, attitude, integrity, loyalty, character and leadership.
"It is very appropriate to have our Ambassador Award named after Scott and Kay Dawson," said ASU Director of Athletics Dr. Dean Lee. "They have been tremendous advocates and representatives for ASU since being students here in the mid-1970's."
The Dawson's donation becomes the fifth gift of over $100,000 given to ASU Athletics over the last 15 months.
"Kay and I are very proud of the past academic achievements of our student-athletes and hope this donation will provide the resources for an even brighter future," said Scott Dawson. "We both feel blessed that we are able to help the continued progress at Arkansas State University."
"We are delighted with this substantial gift to further enhance the Charles F. Luter Family Academic Success Center," said Lee. "Dawson's Den will be a gathering place for our student-athletes as they work to continue competing at the highest level in the classroom."
The Dawsons have lived in Germantown, Tenn. since they were married in 1979. They graduated summa cum laude from Arkansas State University with accounting degrees in 1978. Their oldest son, David, is currently a senior at Georgetown University and Andrew, their youngest son, is in his second year at the University of Miami.
Scott has been employed by First Tennessee Bank since 1981 and is currently a Senior Vice President at FTN Financial. Scott and Kay are both Elders at Balmoral Presbyterian Church, where they have been active in youth ministry and community service.
Scott is currently serving on the board of the Red Wolf Club, where he was a past president. He is also on the board of Lausanne Collegiate School, where he was past treasurer. Additionally, Scott serves as president of the board of the Memphis Recovery Center, a non-profit drug rehabilitation center.
The Dawsons were two of the original co-founders of ESCRA, one of the largest youth recreational sports league in Tennessee, organizing and coaching dozens of recreational teams in soccer, baseball and basketball.