BY LISA WARREN
Mentoring. Counseling. Listening.
These are the things that help to bring talents out in young people, says Holly Warlick, head basketball coach for the University of Tennessee's Lady Vols.
Warlick, a three-time All-American point guard at UT, later served for 27 years as a loyal assistant to Hall of Fame Lady Vols Coach Pat Summitt.
When Summitt retired in 2012, Warlick was named her successor as head coach.
Warlick's debut in the 2012-13 season produced a 27-8 overall record and a 14-2 mark in league play, which earned Tennessee its 17th all-time SEC regular season title.
She was in Greeneville on Tuesday evening to speak at the 17th annual Holston United Methodist Home's "Friends of Children" Benefit Dinner.
During her talk at the well-attended event held at the General Morgan Inn, Warlick spoke about the responsibility that adults have toward children and youth in the community.
ROLE MODELS, TEACHERS
"We as adults need to be leaders. We need to be great role models. We need to be teachers," Warlick said.
"And we need to listen to these young kids," she added.
"If I have learned one thing -- you have to listen," Warlick said.
Young people have things to say, she emphasized. And, often, what they have to say makes sense and would help adults in their lives to lead and nurture them, the coach added.
"We need to lead them and to counsel them," Warlick said.
"God gave me a talent to play basketball. All of these young boys and girls have a talent. But I had someone to help get that talent out of me," she said.
"This is all these kids are asking," she said. Someone needs to help bring their talents out of them.
"It is up to us as adults to give them the opportunity to succeed in life," she said.
STUDY HARD, PLAY HARD
As a basketball coach, Warlick said that she demands much from her players.
The top demand, she said, is that her players must receive their education.
Secondly, she requires them to play hard, to show a positive attitude and to demonstrate their passion for the game of basketball -- and for life.
Warlick applauded the efforts of Holston Home and its staff for what she said are the vital roles that the Holston Home staff play in the development of the children and youth they serve.
HOLSTON HOME SERVICES
Headquartered in Greeneville, Holston Home also has family service centers in Johnson City, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Bristol, Va.
The Christian-based organzation provides a variety of services including residential and foster care to children who have been placed in state custody.
Additionally, Holston Home facilitates adoptions, and provides special education services and family support services, such as quality child-care to low-income families.
Proceeds from the annual "Friends of Children" dinner help Holston Home continue its mission.
Brenda Parrish-Dickmann, event co-chair and a member of the Friends of Children Committee at Holston Home, provided the welcome, while co-chair Kent Bewley, also a committee member, served as master of ceremonies.
THANKS FOR SUPPORT
"Thank you for being here tonight, and thank you for supporting Holston Home," Bewley said.
"Holston Home is doing well, but without your support and the support of many others, it could not do what it does," he added.
Art Masker, president and CEO of Holston Home, provided an update on the organization and spoke of its continuing efforts to serve children and families in need.
He also expressed deep appreciation to the participants at the dinner -- and the community as a whole -- for the support given Holston Home through the years.
Masker, who will be retiring at the end of the month after more than 40 years of service, including the last 14 years as president and CEO, said that "Holston Home could not be the home that it is today if it was located in any other community except Greeneville and Greene County.
"This community has supported and nurtured Holston Home for 118 years," he stated.
Back in 1895, Mrs. Elizabeth Wiley acted out of "a sense of compassion for an abandoned child.
"She got on her knees to pray, and then she got to work and she started this home," Masker said.
Today, Holston Home has grown into a multi-faceted organization that has provided care and services to more than 10,000 children since its founding.
Last year alone, Holston Home provided services to more than 800 children, Masker said.
Grady Barefield, a member of the Holston Home alumni, gave the invocation at the benefit dinner.
Bradley Williams, the incoming president and CEO of Holston Home, provided the benediction.
Special music was also provided by one of the Holston Home youth.
Leading sponsors of the event were Charles and Eva Grey Hutchins, LMR Plastics, Leonard & Associates, and Scott and Nikki Niswonger.
Table sponsors were American Calendar Company, Badcock Furniture, Bewley Properties, C&C Millwright, Consumer Credit Union, DTR of Tennessee Inc., Greeneville Light & Power System, Jarden Zinc Products, Art and Marty Masker, Laughlin Memorial Hospital, Ken and Debbie Oldenburg, Takoma Regional Hospital and The Greeneville Sun.
Additional sponsorship was provided by Alan Corley, Steve and Brenda Parrish-Dickmann, Quick Stop Markets, John and Joy McGuffin and Unaka Foundation.