University News
For Immediate Release: 
Feb 11 2004

Don Nehlen to Headline Concord Fundraiser at the Greenbrier, Saturday, March 13

Athens, W. Va. – Donald E. Nehlen, former head football coach for West Virginia University and one of the nation’s five “winningest” active coaches at the time of his retirement will be speaking at the fifth annual Southern West Virginia Fund for Concord Dinner.

The annual affair, scheduled for Saturday, March 13, raises funds for scholarships for students attending Concord College, and has become an event that is anticipated by the College’s alumni and supporters.

Nehlen achieved 202 career wins with a 149-93-4 record. He is one of only 17 coaches in the history of the NCAA Division I to have achieved 200 or more wins. He led the WVU football machine to 13 bowls, through 17 winning seasons, and received the Lambert Trophy as Eastern champion in 1988 and 1993. WVU was the “Big East” champion in 1993, and they racked up two undefeated seasons, 1988 and 1993. Nehlen also coached 15 first team All-Americans and 82 all-conference players.

In 1997, Nehlen was president of the American Football Coaches Association, an organization with 10,000 members. He instituted guidelines for spring practice to reduce the potential for serious injuries, brought attention to the impending problem of dropping participation rates for youth football, continued the dialogue concerning Title IX and gender equality issues, and launched a fingerprint identification program for children that will ultimately reach more than 2.4 million youngsters nationwide.

Nehlen has received numerous awards and accolades, including four “Coach of the Year” awards in 1988 alone, and five awards in 1993. Nehlen received his B.A. from Bowling Green State University, and his M.A. from Kent State University. A native of Canton, Ohio, he and his wife, Merry Ann, have two children-- Dan and Vicky--and five grandchildren.

Mr. Nehlen is currently serving as spokesman for “Friends of Coal,” an organization that is distributing information about the benefits of the mining industry on the economy.

“We are pleased that Don Nehlen has accepted our invitation to speak,” stated H.D. “Bart” Harvey, chairman for the dinner’s planning committee. “Coach Nehlen’s participation in this dinner demonstrates his continued support for higher education in West Virginia. Many Concord students attend WVU as graduate students, and there is a tremendous amount of support for WVU in southern West Virginia.”

Concord President Jerry L. Beasley said that, “The Southern West Virginia Fund for Concord College Dinner at The Greenbrier is an occasion that we all look forward to from year to year.

The setting is beautiful, our cause, raising scholarship dollars for deserving students, is challenging, and the speakers are inspiring. And, this year is no different. We are honored that Coach Don Nehlen, a West Virginia son, has agreed to return to the State to address our gathering of business leaders, legislators, alumni and friends of the College. Don Nehlen is a legend in West Virginia, and we are particularly proud to be able to list him among our distinguished speakers at The Greenbrier.”

The event begins with a reception at 6 p.m. in Colonial Hall, followed by dinner at 7 p.m. Individual tickets are $125, and tables are available for $1,000, $2,500 and $5,000. The Commanders will provide entertainment for the evening. For more information, contact the Concord College Office of Development by Monday, March 1, 2004, at 1-304-384-5317 or devly@concord.edu.

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PHOTO: Don Nehlen

PO BOX 1000, VERMILLION ST., ATHENS, WV 24712.