WILMINGTON — Scholarships to “good citizen” athletes in the greater Wilmington area have now been guaranteed for years to come, all in the name of a gridiron great.
The Greater Wilmington Sports Hall of Fame (GWSHOF) on Friday announced the “Coach Bill Dooley Education Endowment Fund” to ensure the “Bill Dooley Scholarship Program” for years to come.
According to former NFL Coach and GWSHOF member John Bunting, the foundation is already a quarter of the way to its goal for endowment.
“Proceeds from these events held (by GWSHOF) go to the scholarships we give out, and there’s four every year,” Bunting said.
According to the Greater Wilmington Sports Hall of Fame website, the hall has given out four scholarships every year since 2006, and inducted 47 members to the Hall of Fame.
The scholarship is awarded to High School student athletes in the Wilmington area, “who successfully balance being good students and good citizens, while also making a significant contribution to their respective sport.” the website states.
Coach Dooley was a well respected veteran of the gridiron, having coached football with the University of North Carolina, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest. He moved to Wilmington in 2001 and coached at Hoggard High School.
Related reading: Locals pay tribute to Legendary Football Coach Bill Dooley, 82
“He (Coach Dooley) was a guy who believed in giving back, he was a guy who believed in trying to build up the community around him.” said former Hoggard Football Coach Scott Braswell.
“It’s so appropriate that we today, launch this effort to endow this scholarship in Coach Dooley’s name for kids moving forward because I think that’s very much what he was all about,” Braswell said.
The event was held at Wilmington International Airport Friday, April 14, with Coach Dooley’s family and many Hall of Fame inductees in attendance.
According to the GWSHOF, “The Coach Bill Dooley Education Endowment Fund will operate as a 501c entity. All contributions are tax deductible. Additionally, the Fund will provide donors with more options than the traditional cash donation. Some of these options are: stock and bond transfers, life insurance policies, annuities, and contributions from trust funds.”
For more information, visit the Greater Wilmington Sports Hall Of Fame website at gwshof.com.