UT Business Alumnus Establishes Scholarship
Program for East Tennessee Student
East Tennessee native Roy Harmon remembers how challenging it was to finance his undergraduate education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. That was his incentive in establishing the Roy L. Harmon Jr. Endowed Accounting Scholarship in the College of Business Administration, to be awarded annually to a deserving undergraduate or graduate student majoring in accounting.
"Earning an accounting degree from UT Knoxville was a life-changing event for me," said Harmon. "I have enjoyed a lot of personal success because of my degree and the opportunities it has afforded me. I hope to be able to provide the same opportunities for a deserving student through the creation of this scholarship." Harmon's gift is part of the Campaign for Tennessee, a $1 billion fundraising effort at the UT Knoxville.
"I was a J. Fred Roddy Scholar when I went to UT Knoxville," said Harmon, who graduated in 1976. "This scholarship helped finance my education. Today's students are experiencing greater financial challenges than I did. My wife Liza and I are very happy to give back. Learn, earn and return is a great way to sum up our responsibilities."
The Harmon Scholarship will be awarded annually beginning with the 2010-2011 academic year. This need-based scholarship will be offered to an undergraduate major or Master of Accountancy student who graduated from a public high school in Sullivan, Washington, Johnson, Carter, Unicoi, Hawkins, Greene, or Hancock counties.
Harmon's career has kept him in East Tennessee. After completing his undergraduate degree, he spent four years with Arthur Andersen in Chattanooga, leaving to join Park National Bank in Knoxville as CFO. Harmon returned to Kingsport in 1989 and joined the Bank of Tennessee in Kingsport in 1991. He became CEO in 1994 at the age of 40, and 10 years later, added chairman to that title. He also serves on the board of directors of Paragon Commercial Bank in Raleigh, NC, a bank founded in 1999 by the Bank of Tennessee.
Harmon’s community service includes being an alderman for the city of Kingsport, chairman of Fun Fest, founding board member of the Friends in Need Health Clinic, and graduate of Leadership Kingsport. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Public Arts Committee of Kingsport. He is also a member of the World President’s Organization and TSCPA.
The Campaign for Tennessee is the most ambitious effort in the university's 214-year history and places UT among the ranks of the nation's largest public and private institutions that have sought this level of private support. The campaign supports the objectives of improved student access and success, research and economic development, outreach and globalization.
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