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Cindy Raines
Director of Communications
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Talbotts Establish Two Business College Endowments

KNOXVILLE -- Graduates from Austin East, Fulton, West and Bearden high schools who want to study business may find special help, thanks to a gift to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, from Robert and Jennifer Talbott.
Robert Talbott, of Knoxville, is president of Holrob Commercial Realty & Investments. He earned degrees in political science and law from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. As a UT trustee, he serves on both the finance and administration and the governance committees.

The Talbotts have given $1.1 million -- $350,000 in cash and $750,000 as a deferred gift -- to the Campaign for Tennessee to help establish two endowments within the College of Business Administration.

The campaign is a $1 billion fundraising effort that was officially launched on April 17 at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

The Robert & Jennifer Talbott Endowment for Innovation and Entrepreneurship will provide support for the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center. The center will foster innovation and entrepreneurship by providing education, hands-on experience and leadership development to entrepreneurs, undergraduates and graduate students.

The Robert & Jennifer Talbott Scholarship Endowment is directed toward graduates from Austin East, Fulton, West and Bearden who are studying business.

Robert Talbott said he chose Bearden High School because it is his alma mater. He said he also wanted to help some of the city's underserved students and encourage entrepreneurship.

"I've seen firsthand the benefits of what entrepreneurs can do for communities," he said. "If you encourage entrepreneurial folks, and hopefully they'll stay here in East Tennessee, they will help us make this the type of community we'd all like it to be."

In addition to their gift to the College of Business, the Talbotts gave $100,000 to support the Lady Vols and $50,000 to support campus beautification efforts.

The Campaign for Tennessee -- the most ambitious effort in the university’s 214-year history -- places UT among the ranks of the nation’s largest public and private institutions that have sought this level of private support.

The campaign, which launched its silent phase in 2005, will secure private gifts that, in turn, will contribute substantially to the distinct, but linked, campuses comprised by the University of Tennessee system. Funds raised through the campaign will directly support the objectives of UT's strategic plan, as outlined by UT President John Petersen. Among those objectives are improved student access and success, research and economic development, outreach and globalization.

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About The University of Tennessee College of Business Administration

The mission of the University of Tennessee College of Business Administration in Knoxville, Tennessee, is to provide innovative leadership in management research education and practice. The College consistently breaks new ground with both its scholarship and award-winning, integrated curriculum that is taught within its undergraduate, graduate and nationally recognized executive education programs. The College is fully accredited by AACSB International - The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. For more information about the University of Tennessee College of Business Administration, visit http://bus.utk.edu