by Trey Paris (BBA '84, MBA '85)
Whether you are an alumnus, a loyal supporter, or a fervent fan of the Bulldogs, there are many ways to truthfully say, “I’m Georgia.”
I have been a Bulldog all of my life, and being a graduate means so much to me. It is an honor to me that my family’s connections to UGA go back almost 80 years.
My grandfather, Tom Paris (BSC ’30), was on the 1929 football team that defeated Yale in the first game ever played in Sanford Stadium. My father, Tom Paris Jr. (BBA ’61), also played football at UGA. He was a letterman on Coach Wally Butts’ 1959 SEC Championship team, a squad that featured Fran Tarkenton, Pat Dye and Bobby Walden. I don’t want to leave out my mother. My dad would say, and I would agree, that an even better achievement than the SEC football title was when he married my mom, the 1960 Miss Pandora, Alice Whitehead (BSEd ’60).
|Alumni Association President Trey Paris (right) holds Thomas Paris IV. At left is Tom Paris Jr., and seated is the first Tom Paris. special photo
My wife, Sandra (BSHE ’86), and I have introduced UGA to a fourth generation, our children Thomas IV and Eliza. No pressure, but I can proudly say we’re all very much “Georgia” and we’re all better for it. My sister Elizabeth Paris also is a Bulldog, earning her BBA in 1985.
But saying “I’m Georgia” means much more than a degree and a legacy of three generations of UGA graduates. It also means looking to the future, supporting and being involved in an institution that affects our world in such a positive way.
I encourage each of you to think about your own UGA legacy. Whether you’re building on lineage that already exists or you’re planting that first UGA seed, you’re part of something very special. Like me, you proudly can say “I’m Georgia.”
—Trey Paris is the UGA Alumni Association Board President