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Thursday, August 18, 2005

UNCP’s football campaign gets gift from Mac Campbell

A gift from 1968 graduate Mac Campbell and his wife Sylvia is the first in UNC Pembroke’s major fund-raising campaign for football.

Mac CampbellThe “First and Ten” Campaign for Football is in the leadership or large donor phase. In late 2004, UNCP announced its intention to build a football team and set fall 2007 as the date for the first contest.

Elizabethtown, N.C., residents, the Campbells will be honored by having the University’s new Wellness Center in Jones Athletic Center named for them. The gift was announced at the August 16 meeting of the Football Advisory Committee that Campbell is a member of.

Mac Campbell is a former trustee of the University and former president of the Braves Club.

“I have a long history with the school,” Campbell said. “The leadership of the Chancellor and (Athletic Director) Dan Kenney had a great deal to do with my decision. ”

In 2001, Campbell was honored in Salt Lake City, Utah with the National Association of Collegiate Director’s of Athletics (NACDA) “Volunteer of the Year” Award for his tireless efforts on behalf of the Braves Club at UNC Pembroke. The award is presented to two individuals each year from the eight hundred plus NACDA member schools. Kenney said the award was well deserved.

“Mac Campbell has been a great friend to UNC Pembroke and to me personally,” Kenney said. “He has given so much to our Athletic Department and enriched the experience that our student athletes have been able to experience. He has donated his expertise, time and resources to make UNC Pembroke a better place. ”

As a trustee, Campbell helped bring Chancellor Allen C. Meadors to UNCP in 1999.

The University’s growth – with construction projects totaling approximately $100 million and enrollment growth of more than 64 percent in six years - is satisfying to the Bladen County native.

“There have been a lot of changes since my day at UNCP and most of them in the past few years,” he said. “Looking around at the new construction at the Jones Center, the Wellness Center and the Sports Medicine facilities really impressed me. It’s state of the art, and part of the Chancellor’s vision for this University. ”

Chancellor Meadors said Mac Campbell is a true friend of the University.

“This donation is significant because of its size and because it comes from Mac Campbell and his wife,” Chancellor Meadors said. “The Campbell’s generous gift is tangible evidence that UNC Pembroke’s football campaign is important to the citizens of our region. We are most grateful for this gift that will greatly benefit the University and its local community of Pembroke.”

Campbell was a part-time member of the golf team at UNCP and has a well-known love of sports.

“I played golf when they needed an extra player, but I wasn’t much,” Campbell said. “I’m excited about football in Pembroke. It’s going to be great for the University.”

Campbell said eastern North Carolina has a “strong brand of football,” and a team at Pembroke will give many high school players the opportunity to attend college and play at the next level.

Campbell is also proud of UNCP’s record of helping people and the region it serves.

“A lot of outstanding Bladen County educators were trained in Pembroke,” he said. “The University served a lot of folks like me who were married and working.”

Campbell went to work in his father’s petroleum distribution business “as soon as I was old enough to drive a truck.” Campbell Oil and Gas Company was founded by his father in 1950, and three of Campbell’s sons work in the business.

Campbell Oil has grown with offices spread out over much of Eastern North Carolina and as far away as Raleigh. Campbell Oil is a diversified distributor of petroleum products that also owns and operates 18 convenience stores.

For more information about the First and Ten Campaign for Football, please call the Office for Advancement at 910.521.6252 or email advancement@uncp.edu. For information about football at UNCP, please call 910.521.6227 or email daniel.kenney@uncp.edu.

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