Centennial Alumni

In 2017, The Tennessee Alumnus magazine celebrates its 100th continuous year of publication by selecting 100 illustrious graduates to feature in three commemorative issues.


100 Distinguished Alumni

Selecting the Centennial Alumni

When your total alumni population is around 370,000, how do you narrow that down to 100 to celebrate along with this magazine’s 100th anniversary? You go to the alumni, of course.

In July 2016, we asked members of the nationwide UT Alumni Association—which includes graduates of all UT campuses—for nominations of alumni whose accomplishments and/or service and support to their alma maters made them worthy of inclusion among the 100 most significant UT alumni ever.

View the list of nearly 500 nominees.

We asked that nominees for professional or volunteer achievement be UT graduates from across the UT system who distinguished themselves and their alma maters through contributions to their communities or professions in one of the following categories:

  • Volunteer service
  • Military service
  • Government or elected office
  • Public or community service
  • Philanthropy
  • Entrepreneurship or business
  • Education
  • Invention or discovery
  • Arts or entertainment
  • UT brand ambassador

Nominations were solicited from our readers via email, social media and on the Alumnus website. We sought nominations from the chief alumni affairs officers, chief communications officers, publications editors and chief development officers for each UT campus and for UT System administration.

When the nomination deadline came in August, 500 UT graduates from the distant to the recent past had been nominated. For the challenge of reducing that pool of 500 nominees to the group of 100 Centennial Alumni, the job went to a special panel of individuals with an exceptional sense of the university’s history.

So, who comprised this panel of knowledgeable alumni that whittled 500 nominees down to the final 100 memorable, accomplished or admired of UT graduates from all campuses and all career paths? They are:

  • Dr. Joe Johnson – President emeritus, UT System
  • Ann Holt Skadberg – UTAA volunteer and daughter of Andy Holt
  • Lofton Stuart – Former executive director of the UTAA
  • Charley Deal – UT Martin
  • Chandra Harris-McCray – UT Foundation
  • Jayne Holder – UT Chattanooga
  • Tim Lanier – UT Health Science Center
  • Tom Looney – UTIA
  • Haylee Marshall – UT Knoxville
  • Rickey McCurry – UT Foundation
  • Susan Robertson – IPS
  • Kerry Witcher – UTAA

Thanks to their exhaustive review, we are pleased to bring you the stories of these Centennial Alumni in three near-equal installments in each of our 2017 issues.