Paul Phillips, retired district attorney general for the 8th Judicial District, has been named executive director of the Roane State Foundation, a press release said.
The foundation is a nonprofit organization that provides financial support for Roane State Community College students and programs. As executive director, Phillips will serves as chief administrative officer for the foundation’s board of trustees and direct the foundation’s programs.
Phillips succeeds Melinda Hillman, the college’s vice president for advancement and community relations. Hillman had served as the foundation’s executive director in addition to her responsibilities as leader for Roane State’s Oak Ridge campus and seven more satellite centers. Hillman will continue to lead the Oak Ridge campus and satellite centers.
Phillips served as attorney general in the 8th district for 33 years. The district includes Campbell, Claiborne, Fentress, Scott, and Union counties (and previously included Morgan County), all communities where many Roane State students and alumni live and work.
“I feel very close to the counties that Roane State serves,” Phillips said in the press release. “Roane State has had a tremendous, positive influence on these communities.”
Phillips has taught for Roane State, served as a board member of the Roane State Foundation and as chair of the advisory board for the college’s Scott County campus in Huntsville. His volunteer efforts at Roane State have included raising funds to give scholarships to high school students taking dual studies courses, which allow high school students to receive college credit and high school credit at the same time.
“The great part about Roane State is that it makes higher education accessible to young people of modest means and to working adults,” Phillips said. “Keeping higher education accessible and available at all the college’s locations is crucial. That would be my dream—we never pull back on making higher education accessible.”
The press release said Phillips’ legal career includes involvement in many professional organizations, and he has often been recognized for his advocacy of children in need. Phillips founded child advocacy centers in Jamestown, Oneida, LaFollette, Maynardville and Tazewell. In 2000, he received the Patrick H. McCutchen Award for Tennessee Child Support Enforcement, and he has been inducted into the Boys and Girls Club Scott County Hall of Fame.
Phillips is a 1971 graduate of Berea College, and he earned his law degree from Vanderbilt University in 1975.
Hillman said she has been “honored to work with our board over the last 15 years to provide opportunities for students and to support Roane State’s mission.
“The foundation is in great hands with Paul as executive director, and I look forward to helping him expand the foundation’s efforts to serve the college, its students and the community,” she said in the release.
For more information about the Roane State Foundation, call (865) 882-4507.