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UC President honored with Daniel Boone Visionary Award


Williamsburg, Ky. – On Tuesday, May 14th the Mountain Laurel District of the Bluegrass Council of Boy Scouts honored University of the Cumberlands (UC) President Dr. James H. Taylor as the 2013 recipient of the third annual Daniel Boone Visionary Award.

“The Daniel Boone Visionary Award is presented to an individual who like Daniel Boone has changed the landscape of their region with an unparalleled vision of what could be, and then made that vision a reality,” said Dr. Terry Forcht, CEO and Founder of Forcht Group of Kentucky.

Dr. Terry Forcht, 2012 Visionary Award recipient, presented Dr. Taylor with the award during a dinner ceremony in the T.J. Roberts Dining Hall located on the UC campus.

“I am humbled to receive this award,” said Taylor. “I can’t take credit for doing anything but hiring smart people with a great work ethic.”

Since becoming the UC President, Dr. Taylor has been the driving force behind the construction and acquisition of 24 buildings including the O. Wayne Rollins Athletic Center, Grace Crum Rollins Fine Arts Center, Correll Science Complex, Harth Hall, Hutton Hall, Kleist Hall, Siler Hall, Taylor Stadium, and the Cumberland Inn.

Congressman Harold "Hal" Rogers, R-Ky., who delivered his greetings from Washington, D.C., noted that Taylor is similar to Boone and other visionaries. Rogers went on to say that in several of the buildings on the University’s campus, the marble floors were made up of previously discarded pieces for being imperfect.

“The difference between stumbling blocks and stepping stones is how you use them. It takes a visionary to organize stepping stones in a way that helps you achieve goals beyond your dreams. That’s the way Dr. Jim Taylor approaches life,” said Rogers. He “has the vision to take imperfect situations and create a master piece. Dr. Taylor has invested much of his life in the educational progress of southern and eastern Kentucky." Further, Rogers noted, Taylor has “developed resources to help the students succeed regardless of their plight.”

Under Taylor’s leadership, the endowment has increased from $6 million in 1980 to over $70 million in 2012. In his 33 years as President the campus has expanded to 1.2 million square feet with 42 buildings on 100 acres of land. The University has added several rental properties and a Northern Kentucky Campus in Florence, Kentucky.

Total enrollment currently sits at an all-time high of 4,297 combined undergraduate and graduate students.

Dr. Forcht went on to say that Dr. Taylor was, “A pioneer that regardless of the obstacle in his way doesn’t stray from the path. His vision, determination, faith, and passion have secured a brighter future for generations to come.”

In addition to recognizing Taylor, the dinner helped to raise money for the Mountain Laurel District of the Bluegrass Council of Boy Scouts. Through the fundraising efforts of several committee members, over $20,000 was raised for the Boys Scouts.

“I know this evening is a fundraiser for the Boy Scouts, and it is certainly appropriate since Dr. Taylor is the consummate fundraiser,” commented Dr. Forcht.

Located in Williamsburg, Ky., University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction, which currently offers four undergraduate degrees more than 40 major fields of study; ten pre-professional programs; ten graduate degrees distributed over eight areas, including two doctorates and seven master’s degrees; certifications in education; and online programs. For more information visit