By Jackie Wise | Photo by Brandon Dill
Emily Capadalis Love is using her passion for the University as she represents the 400,000 alumni as UT Alumni Association president. What may seem like an impossible job to many is easy for Capadalis Love, who considers everyone affiliated with UT as family.
Those community values were introduced to her at a young age, as the Memphis native grew up with her mother, grandmother and two siblings. Capadalis Love’s
life centered on the Greek Orthodox Church and a neighborhood where family and tradition were part of everyday life.
Having a college education was a priority her mother made clear to her three children, and Capadalis Love followed in her brother’s footsteps by attending UT Knoxville.
“Seeing the culture of traditions at UT Knoxville made it feel like home,” she says about her collegiate experience.
Throughout her career, which included nonprofit work and financial services, Capadalis Love used lessons from her mother to get involved in the local community.
“She taught us to give back by taking us with her to deliver a meal to someone sick or volunteer us for something at church,” Capadalis Love says about her mother.
The work in the Memphis community led her to connections with fellow alumni from the UT System, and that passion and feeling of family began to resurface. She was encouraged to get involved with a UTAA women’s program, and she never looked back.
“I grew up with a strong sense of family, and being part of the UTAA has given me another extended family,” she says. “I am blessed to work alongside a group of amazing alumni that inspire and motivate me to give back to our university.”
As Capadalis Love serves as president, she wants to encourage alumni to be part of the family and give back to the university.
“The sky is the limit on how you can be involved—join a local alumni chapter, sign up to be a UT Promise student mentor, be an advocate for UT or give to something you were passionate about as a student,” she says on ways alumni can remain engaged with the university.
In addition to giving back, Capadalis Love is passionate about alumni sharing the stories from their campuses. Her excitement sparks as she talks about the research and innovation emerging from the campuses, the experiences and opportunities for students and the overall impact UT is having on people everywhere.
“There is so much good happening on all of our campuses, not only for our students but within the state of Tennessee and on a global level,” she explains, “and as alumni, we have to share those stories with prospective students, neighbors, community leaders and family.”
There is no doubt that Capadalis Love will build a legacy of enthusiasm, excitement and, like her last name, love for the University of Tennessee. Her year will be filled with alumni engagements, and while it may look different this year, she hopes to welcome alumni to the family.
2020-21 Board of Governors
President: Emily Capadalis Love (Knoxville ’78), Memphis
President-Elect: Lee Ann Adams (Chattanooga ’94, Knoxville ’97), Chattanooga
Treasurer: Brian Winbigler (Knoxville ’03, Health Science Center ’14), Maryville
Immediate Past President and Chair of Annual Giving: Tim Tucker (Health Science Center ’88), Huntingdon
- Cindy Brasher (Martin ’02, Health Science Center ’14), Memphis
- Steve Carter (Knoxville ’77), Douglasville, Georgia
- Jay Dale (Chattanooga ’94, ’01), Ooltewah
- Jim Duke Jr. (Knoxville ’73), Brownsville
- Alison Franklin (Agriculture ’98), Bartlett
- Erin Freeman (Knoxville ’02), Knoxville
- Jennifer Hampton (Martin ’97), Martin
- Debbie Ingram (Chattanooga ’84, Knoxville ’94) Ooltewah
- Donna Lawrence (Chattanooga ’81), Ooltewah
- Tonya Parson (Martin ’93; Health Science Center ’04), Cordova
- Wesley Phillips (Knoxville ’06, Health Science Center ’12), Memphis
- Levi Pointer (Martin ’94), Collierville
- Mitch Pollard (Martin ’93), Nashville
- Dan Schlacter (Knoxville ’02), Nashville
- Darrell Urban (Knoxville ’91), Nashville
- Claire Wade (Martin ’95), Martin
- Nicole Wellington (Chattanooga ’95, ’02), Chattanooga
- William Winstead (Martin ’98), Germantown
EX-OFFICIO NON-VOTING MEMBERS
- UT President: Randy Boyd (Knoxville ’79)
- President and CEO, UT Foundation: Kerry Witcher (Knoxville ’81)
- Interim Assistant Vice President for Alumni Affairs and Advocacy: David Golden
- UT Knoxville Campus Representative: Duane Wiles
- UT Chattanooga Campus Representative: Andrea Lyons (Chattanooga ’90, ’18)
- UT Martin Campus Representative:
Jackie Johnson (Martin ’08, ’10)
- UT Health Science Center Campus Representative: Chandra Tuggle-Wilson
The University of Tennessee Alumni Association represents and serves the 400,000 alumni across the UT System. It is a central organization that provides different ways for alumni to engage with their alma mater through events, learning, career services, travel and legislative advocacy.