Scholarship honors Brewer
Former UNC-CH Sports Information Director Rick Brewer, who contributed to the Tar Heels' athletic program for 32 years, will now be an official part of the University forever. Two hundred and twenty-one friends, colleagues and former employees raised more than $73,000 to establish a scholarship fund in his honor with the School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Over the course of Brewer's career at UNC-CH, the university won 28 national championships in various sports, captured 180 Atlantic Coast Conference championships and was invited to 19 bowl games. Brewer worked with Michael Jordan, Mia Hamm and Marion Jones, and he mentored nearly 180 full-time and student employees in the Sports Information Office. Although he opted to take early retirement in February 2000, Brewer continues to work at the University on a part-time basis as the sports information director emeritus.
Richard Cole, dean of the School, said the scholarship would assist students who had expressed an interest in pursuing a career in the field of sports journalism, broadcasting or public relations on the collegiate, amateur or professional level. Cole said Brewer had already made an enormous impact on journalism students during the past three decades.
"He has helped instill respect for the field of sports journalism," Cole said. "He also has taught our students proper ethics and conduct in the field."
Brewer was named the University's first assistant sports information director upon graduation from UNC-CH in 1971. He was elected to the College Sports Information Directors of America Hall of Fame in 1991, served as CoSIDA president in 1996 and received the group's Arch Ward Award for lifetime achievement in 1999. Since 1983, he has been a member of the Media Coordination Committee at the Final Four of the NCAA Men's Basketball Championships, and in 1984 he served as a press officer for the United States Olympic Committee at the Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles.
"What sets Rick apart from other people in this business is the fact he has done so much for his profession as a whole to advance it into the 21st century," said Dave Lohse, director of media relations for Olympic sports, who worked with Brewer for more than 23 years and helped organize the scholarship fund. "His service to the University of North Carolina, to its student-athletes and to its coaches has been exemplary."