In each issue of the Circle Park News, we feature a member of the CCI Board of Visitors through a Q&A session. This feature is on BOV member Ron Harr.
Ron Harr earned a B.S. degree in Communications from UT in 1976. He is currently the Senior Vice President for Human Resources and Public Affairs for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee. Based in Chattanooga, Harr and his wife Linda have two children: Ginny, an architect in New York City, and Betsy who just graduated from UTK with a Business degree. In his spare time, he enjoys sailing and photography.
CCI: How and when did you first get involved (on a volunteer basis) with CCI?
I joined the board of visitors about 12 years ago.
CCI: In your view, what is the most important or impactful role you’ve played as a volunteer?
Tapping into the alumni base in Chattanooga.
CCI: Why have you chosen to support the college (financially and/or with your time)? Why do you see this as important?
My three years at UT (’73-’76) prepared me very well for my career. My youngest daughter just graduated and she had a great experience at UT, too.
CCI: What do you hope to accomplish during your term with the BOV?
Further development of alumni connections and support.
CCI: Is there anything exciting or interesting going on “behind the scenes” in CCI that the average alum might not be aware of?
I think older alums would be amazed if they spent a day in the College of Communication and Information. The caliber of the students and the instruction by the faculty is something to be proud of. The leadership of the Dean is infectious.
CCI: If someone is considering volunteerism as a way to “give back” to the University, what advice would you have for him or her? Why should they do it?
If you are working in any of the professional fields related to the college, you are needed as a guest lecturer. And you won’t be surprised to hear that the University needs your money. Even small gifts add up and the University takes note of which college’s alums give back, so we need your help.
CCI: What from your UT and CCI experience has stuck with you during life since graduating?
I was very pleased that the formerly separate College of Communications and School of Information Sciences merged into the College of Communication and Information. It makes perfect sense in the modern world and yet it is rare for academic disciplines to merge. We are truly leading the way.
CCI: What is your favorite memory from your time as a student at UT?
Wow, that’s a big list. As a photographer for “The Daily Beacon” I got to be in the middle of everything: games, concerts, student government. I loved it all.
CCI: Any other parting words of wisdom?
If I had it to do over again, I would do it over again!