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Swann Family Endows The Men’s Soccer Head Coaching Position

June 25, 2001

Clemson, SC– It was announced last week that Joe and Bobbi Swann, of Greenville, SC, and their family have created an IPTAY Endowment of the head coach’s position for men’s soccer at Clemson University. Joe Swann (’63), who is president of Rockwell Automation, is also a member of the Clemson University Board of Trustees. The Swanns have three children: Erin (’92) Audrey Swann Melzer (’95) and Ted (’97). “We are appreciative to Clemson and its people who have created what is the Clemson family,” Swann said. “As much as possible, Bobbi and I like to give back to Clemson.” Swann said the Endowment in honor of Tiger soccer coach Trevor Adair was due in part to the family’s interest in the sport. “My son and my oldest daughter played soccer in high school. And if you look at the job Trevor has done, it is an outstanding record. He cares a great deal about his players.” A dinner recognizing Swann’s IPTAY Endowment was recently held and attended by many Clemson dignataries including former University President Dr. R.C. Edwards.

“The generous gift by Joe Swann speaks so much for Joe, Clemson’s soccer program and Trevor Adair,” said Dr. Edwards. “Coach Adair has done as fine a job as could be done. He is an excellent coach.” Dr. Edwards-who became Clemson’s president the same year Swann was a freshman-was president when the men’s soccer program became a part of Clemson’s Athletic Department.

“Coach I.M. Ibrahim was a student at Clemson and very much interested in soccer. I remember the day I handed him his doctorate degree for chemical engineering at Clemson. He went on and became Clemson’s first soccer coach.” Clemson won two national championships (’84 and ’87) under Ibrahim. Ibrahim resigned in 1994 after 28 years as Clemson’s head men’s soccer coach. Adair succeeded Ibrahim as coach and continued the winning tradition at Clemson. Twelve former Clemson players are now playing in the Major League of Soccer. Clemson has been defeated in the NCAA Tournament three of the past four years by the eventual national champion. Adair has coached seven All-Americans, two Olympians and one Hermann Award winner (soccer’s equivalent to the Heisman Trophy). “Clemson is synonymous with college soccer,” said Adair. “It is a program well respected across the nation. That is a tribute to Clemson’s commitment to soccer and many important people like the Swanns.” Adair said he was touched by the honor. “I am just so honored that a family so revered in the Clemson family as the Swanns has chosen to honor me and the Clemson soccer program in this way,” said Adair. Adair and his wife, Jody, attended the IPTAY Endowment dinner. The Adairs have two daughters: Courtney and Megan. “I could not believe I was in the same room with so many people who are a part of Clemson’s history. It was a night I will remember for a long, long time.” Former Clemson President Walter Cox also attended the IPTAY Endowment dinner. “I’ve known Joe since he arrived at Clemson from Clio. He became active in student government, in particular the Student Senate. He was a good student and a good citizen. He took a leadership role in whatever he got involved with. “He was always thinking ahead. In some respects, he was showing signs of being a visionary even while at Clemson. “We’re proud of his gift to IPTAY’s Endowment program. We appreciate Joe for giving so much of himself and his loyalty.” Swann has served on Clemson’s board since 1990. He is or has been active with the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, the American Bearing Manufacturers Association, the United Way and the Leadership Greenville Forum and Foundation. Swann said his foundation came from Clemson. “A lot of what I learned at Clemson was not only in academics, but about life. What Clemson did was give me the feeling of comfort in being involved with other people.” The result of which Clemson now enjoys through the Swann family Endowment.

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