After serving in the classroom and in the Chattanooga community for more than three decades, Dr. Roger Thompson has earned the University of Tennessee Alumni Association Public Service Award. He works with local government to address crime problems and continues to work on behalf of the homeless population.
The award is given “to recognize individuals for outstanding achievement in public service and through this recognition, to stimulate the growth and development of the University’s public service role.”
“Dr. Thompson has been a criminal justice faculty member at The University of Tennessee Chattanooga for 36 years, and while he is a wonderful instructor, he is best known for his service to the Chattanooga community. He has been involved in numerous activities such as assisting the homeless, crime reduction seminars, and the police memorial,” said Dr. Tammy Garland, Interim Head of the Department of Criminal Justice.
In the last two years, Thompson organized a diversity series to create healthy dialogue and advocacy. In 2012, a human trafficking lecture featured specialists who provided a better understanding of both local and global problems. Additional lectures addressed the impact of early school start times, hate crimes, immigration reform, and civil rights.
Thompson helped create Project Homeless Connect, an initiative designed to help at-risk families with improved access to services and resources. His ongoing commitment has been a positive influence on students and faculty at UTC, who have joined him in this movement.
As a member of the Chattanooga Multicultural Affairs Board, Thompson works to ensure everyone in Chattanooga can fully participate in the community without fear of discrimination.
“He has been a true mentor to me and others in the department. Without his assistance many of us would have never made connections to the community that has allowed us to pursue both research and service opportunities. I cannot imagine anyone more deserving of this award than Dr. Thompson,” Garland said.