Vol Practice Field to be dedicated to Jim Haslam

Dedication ceremonies will be held Saturday, Nov. 9, at 10:30 a.m., for the newly named Haslam Field on the University of Tennessee campus. UT President Dr. John W. Shumaker and Athletics Director Doug Dickey will speak at the plaque unveiling and site dedication.

"Jim Haslam is a leader who has made a difference both in his professional and personal life, Dr. Shumaker said. He has been a loyal and dedicated friend to this University and community. It is most befitting that we pay tribute to his many years of service with the naming of this field in his honor.

This is a significant moment in time as we honor 50 years of service Jim Haslam has given not only to the University of Tennessee, but also to the local Knoxville community and the uncounted communities in the 38 states in which Pilot Oil does business, Dickey said. There is no more fitting place for his name to be permanently etched than on the campus where he started his Tennessee career more than 50 years ago.

The new Haslam Field is located on the site of the old Army Reserve Building and Upper Hudson Field and is adjacent to the Neyland-Thompson Sports Center on Johnny Majors Drive.

The practice facility is named in honor of James A. (Jim) Haslam II, captain of the 1952 University of Tennessee football team, senior member of the Universitys Board of Trustees, having served since 1980, and local civic and business leader. He is the chair of the Executive Committee of the Athletics Board.

Haslam is founder and chairman of Pilot Corporation, which currently operates 67 convenience stores in Tennessee and Virginia. Pilot Travel Centers LLC operates 237 travel centers in 38 states, with annual sales for 2001 in excess of $4 billion.

The University of Tennessee and local community have been very good to me, personally and in my business career, Haslam said. It seems like yesterday I came here to play football for Gen. Neyland, a man to whom I owe much of my success. I am honored to have my name on this facility and have always been proud to be part of the University of Tennessee team and family.

Haslam served as co-chairman of the Tennessee Tomorrow Campaign at UTs Knoxville Campus from 1979-80, Chairman of the Chancellor's Associates in 1976, as a member of the Universitys Board of Trustees since 1980, Chairman of the Tennessee Imperative Campaign 1989 - Present, Vice Chairman Board of Trustees 1991 - 1993, and Chairman of the 21st Century Campaign Steering Committee in 1994. He has been involved in numerous civic, charitable and political projects in Knoxville, across the state of Tennessee and nationally.

Improvements to the practice field began last spring when the Armory was demolished following the Army Reserve's move in March to new quarters off Middlebrook Pike. The old offensive practice field was regraded and lengthened to 120 yards and a new 85-yard field was constructed along Johnny Majors Drive. Ornamental brick and iron fencing has been installed around the perimeter of the facility, dramatically improving the look of the facility. The next phase of the improvements is scheduled to begin in January and will include lengthening of the Robert E. White Indoor Practice Field from 70 to 120 yards.

The gift to create Haslam Field is part of a comprehensive program for new, renovated and expanded facilities benefiting 17 of UTs 20 men and womens intercollegiate sports. These improvements are designed to enable UT to continue to compete for SEC and NCAA championships in each of its sports.

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