Hank Aaron's Dream Foundation donates $104,000 to TC
From the left are Talladega College Board Chairman Dr. Harry Coaxum, President Dr. Billy C. Hawkins, Billye Aaron and Henry “Hank” Aaron.
TALLADEGA — Talladega College received a special gift from a sports legend during last weekend’s graduation ceremony. During the 138th commencement exercises Sunday, after conferring degrees to some 70 graduates, baseball Hall of Famer Henry “Hank” Aaron and his wife, Billye, presented a check in the amount of $104,000 to the college.

The Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation presented the check to the college in honor of their 4 for 4 Endowed Scholarship, which represents one of Aaron’s numerous baseball feats.

“The Aarons have been devoted philanthropists to education and advancement for youth across this country. We are honored at Talladega College to be supported by the Chasing the Dream Foundation. I’ve personally witnessed and experienced the philanthropy of the Aarons while I was president at Texas College (Tyler, Texas), of which Mrs. Aaron is an alumna. We are grateful to receive their continued support of students and education here at Talladega College,” TC President Dr. Billy C. Hawkins said.

The Aarons have been long advocates of higher education. Billye Aaron worked for many years with the United Negro College Fund, where she gave of her time and talents to raise funds and donate to institutions across the nation.

Aaron founded the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation with his wife over 17 years ago. The Chasing the Dream Foundation will fund 12 institutions across the United States with the “4 for 4” scholarship. The scholarship name refers to the 12 times in Aaron’s baseball career that he went 4-for-4 at the plate.

The scholarship was created by the Aarons to give back to the community by supporting deserving at-risk youths across the country and help them “chase their dreams” by impacting their lives with funded educational opportunities.

During the commencement ceremony, the Aarons were both conferred with honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees. In recognition of their national benevolence and dedication to education, the Aarons are now recognized as Drs. Aaron, courtesy of Talladega College.

Talladega College, founded in 1867, is Alabama's oldest historically black private college and among the oldest liberal arts colleges in the nation.

© 2013