UT Athletics sets fundraising record

Published 11:34 am Monday, July 18, 2022

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On the heels of an outstanding competitive year for Tennessee Athletics in 2021-22 — highlighted by five SEC team championships and a 13th-place finish in the LEARFIELD Directors’ Cup — the Tennessee Fund has reported a record year across multiple fundraising metrics.

For the fiscal year that ended on June 30 (FY22), the Tennessee Fund team set records* for fundraising total ($80,759,936), cash receipts ($68,568,453) and total donors (18,859).

For the fiscal year that ended on June 30 (FY22), the Tennessee Fund team set records* for fundraising total ($80.7 million), cash receipts ($68.5 million) and total donors (18,859). UT Athletics photo

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“These fundraising numbers stand as further proof that Tennessee has the most passionate and powerful fanbase in college sports,” Vice Chancellor/Director of Athletics Danny White said. “We’re grateful for every single donor who has done their part in giving their all for the Vols and Lady Vols. I also commend our Tennessee Fund staff for their tremendous work on behalf of our incredible student-athletes.

“As our recently released strategic plan, Rise Glorious, emphasizes, fundraising and fan support is an extremely important element of the restoration of Tennessee Athletics. Let’s all commit to build off this powerful momentum and put on even more steam starting this Fall.”

The Tennessee Fund’s fiscal-year-end announcement coincides with that of the University of Tennessee Foundation and the UT Knoxville campus, which also reported a record year in 2021-22.

Impressively, Tennessee Athletics’ new philanthropic giving society — The Shareholders Society — grew by 222 members, or more than 180 percent, ending FY22 with 345 members. Established in April of 2021, this philanthropic giving society is rooted in altruistic giving, above and beyond season tickets and gameday benefits, such as parking.

While Tennessee Athletics introduced modernized adjustments to pricing and ticketing structures across all venues, donor count grew by 57 percent, reaching an all-time high of nearly 19,000. As Tennessee Athletics moves forward with each season-ticket holder paying an equitable and transparent amount, UT’s 20 sport programs can more effectively harness the power of Vol Nation by capitalizing on venue size and extraordinary donor support.

Whether fundraising for cutting-edge capital projects, developing modern premium amenities or maximizing seat-based giving, the Tennessee Fund continues to provide Tennessee Athletics with a winning edge by generating resources that allow for strategic investments in student-athletes, coaches and programmatic infrastructure.

“To produce fundraising numbers like this, you need two things: passionate donors and fans and an aggressive staff that is unrelenting in their pursuit of resources for our student-athletes and coaches,” Senior Associate Athletics Director for Development Brady Hart said. “Fortunately, at Tennessee, we have both. The investment made by all Vol and Lady Vol fans is insane. We will celebrate this year and turn the page to FY23, as we know that our resources will provide a competitive advantage across all 20 sports.”

As Tennessee seeks to build on its championship tradition across all sports, the ongoing My All Campaign is fueling the pursuit of enhanced championship resources to support student-athletes’ academic and competitive pursuits.

“The best thing about fundraising in college athletics is that everyone can be involved,” Hart said. “At UT, we preach, ‘One gift. Any size. Every year.’ As part of the My All Campaign, every donor, fan, friend and Tennessean can be a part of propelling this historic brand back to the top. If you want to be involved, we will find an impactful and comfortable way for you to invest in our student-athletes and coaches.”

*Previous Tennessee Fund Annual Records: $77,900,365 in fundraising totals (FY18), $44,695,586 in cash receipts (FY15) and 16,982 donor count (FY17).