KNOXVILLE, Tenn. The children of University of Tennessee law graduate Thomas Ryan Prewitt Sr. of Memphis have honored their father with a pledge of $100,000 to the College of Law at UT-Knoxville.
The gift, part of UT’s $250 million 21st Century Campaign, makes Prewitt a founder of the college’s new Center for Advocacy, which will train lawyers in the full range of techniques for resolving disputes.
Making the gift are Thomas R. Prewitt Jr., Thurston Hall Prewitt, Julian Jones Prewitt and Mary Louise Carrick, all of Memphis.
A native of Bolivar, Prewitt Sr. earned a law degree from UT in 1947. He has been a partner in the Memphis firm of Armstrong Allen Prewitt Gentry Johnston and Holmes since 1950 and is now a senior partner. Prewitt is a former president of the Memphis Bar Association and is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, and the American and Tennessee Bar Foundations.
During World War II, Prewitt flew 50 bomber missions over Germany, Austria, Romania, Hungary and Poland as a navigator with the U.S. Army Air Force.
“My family decided that the best way to honor Dad was to make a gift to the college of law,” said Prewitt Jr., a 1973 UT law graduate who is also a partner in the same Memphis firm. “The practice of law has always been our father’s biggest passion, and we are delighted to honor him by supporting the institution that he attended and that has made so many important contributions to the practice of law in Tennessee.”
Law dean Richard S. Wirtz said, “The law school is extremely fortunate that the children of Tom Prewitt Sr. chose to commemorate his distinguished career as an advocate in this particular way. The hope of all of us involved with the Center for Advocacy is that it will embody the high professional ideals reflected in Tom Prewitt’s life and work.”
The law college seeks to raise $6 million as its part of UT’s $250 million 21st Century Campaign. Gifts to the college support centers for advocacy and entrepreneurial law, fund professorships and scholarships, and expand the services of the legal clinic and law library. Gifts also provide for educational resources in the new law building, now under construction.
CONTACT: R.G. Smithson (423) 974-0687