Monday, April 25, 2011

Auburn has day of community service

AUBURN - More than 100 Auburn Athletics Department staff members spent the day giving back as volunteers in Auburn and Opelika on Monday.

Director of Athletics Jay Jacobs, who pruned bushes and limbed up trees at Dean Road Elementary School in Auburn as part of the Third Annual Tigers Give Back Community Service Day, said the day is about giving back to the community and supporting Auburn student-athletes who volunteer thousands of hours each year.

“Our student-athletes have been leading the way for the past several years in community service, and we’re just trying to follow their example,” Jacobs said. “It is really important to us to reach out to the Auburn and Opelika communities as a way to thank them for their support of Auburn University and our student-athletes.”

Head football coach Gene Chizik spent the morning visiting with cancer patients at East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, and women’s basketball coach Nell Fortner visited with patients at EAMC’s Skilled Nursing Facility. Women’s golf coach Kim Evans, equestrian coach Greg Williams and soccer coach Karen Hoppa spent the day cleaning out closets and playing with club members at the Boys & Girls Club in Opelika.

Men’s golf coach Nick Clinard worked at Dean Road Elementary, and gymnastics coach Jeff Graba and members of the Auburn basketball coaching staff volunteered at Cary Woods Elementary School. Staff members also volunteered at the Women’s Hope Medical Clinic and the Lee County Youth Development Center.

Auburn Athletics Director of Community Relations Latisha Durroh, who organized the event, said the day was a big success.

“We had great participation from the athletic department today, and the community was so appreciative,” Durroh said. “This is what being a part of the Auburn family and this community is all about.”

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