Thrailkills Continue to Support Belmont, Most Recently with Athletics
Larry Thrailkill and his wife Jan have been involved with Belmont University for nearly four decades, with Larry serving on the Board of Trustees for many of those years. In addition to being instrumental in bringing Belmont President Dr. Bob Fisher to campus, Thrailkill led the board as chairman during a period of rapid growth for the University and served as an adjunct faculty member in the Massey Graduate School of Business. He and Jan have made numerous financial gifts to Belmont, including providing support for campus ministry programs, faith development seminars, a commissioned art sculpture for Belmont Law and, most recently, a generous gift to Belmont Athletics.
Belmont Athletics Director Scott Corley said, “I am so thankful that Jan and Larry Thrailkill have endowed a new scholarship to benefit a student athlete. Endowed scholarships are critical to building a world-class athletics department. The Thrailkills’ long standing dedication to Belmont and our student-athletes is second-to-none.”
Larry said, “Belmont stands for what Jan and I stand for. We want something that honors the Lord and stands for excellence in what it does and transforms young people.”
For the Thrailkills, relationships with fellow trustee Randy Smith and former presidents Dr. Herbert Gabhart and Dr. Bill Trout provided the foundation for the couple learning more about what was then Belmont College. But a Sunday School class at nearby Brentwood Baptist opened their eyes to another important aspect of the growing institution.
Jan, who was an all-state basketball player in Georgia, noted, “Larry had some of Betty Wiseman’s players in his Sunday School class, and he understood that Betty’s program was ‘Basketball with a Purpose.’ We have also supported Betty’s mission trips… We have gotten to know many of the athletes personally through the coaches, and we have led Bible studies for players and traveled with the team to tournaments. Our support comes out of a love for the students and a desire to support them.”
The Thrailkills’ support for Belmont hasn’t gone unnoticed as the couple has been honored with a residence hall named in their honor, and Larry was awarded an honorary doctorate of humanities by Belmont in 2004. In addition, the couple was honored as the Chaney Award winners in 2013-14, a recognition given by the Athletics Hall of Fame committee to those who provide support for Belmont Athletics. While appreciative of these tokens of gratitude, it’s not what motivates the Thrailkills to give; rather it’s the Belmont mission that drives them and that they hope will inspire others to follow suit.
“Belmont is a place where we are honoring Christ, transforming lives and helping young people become the people they should become.”