College Football Hall of Famer to speak at Centenary August 26

SHREVEPORT, LA — NFL veteran and College Football Hall of Fame member Don McPherson will bring his powerful message about domestic violence and sexual assault prevention to Shreveport-Bossier during a free public event at Centenary College’s Gold Dome on Saturday, August 26 at 7:00 p.m. McPherson’s talk, “Boys to Men,” will focus on understandings of masculinity and healthy relationships in today’s society.

“Don McPherson has spent his post-football life educating young men about their role in eliminating sexual violence against women,” says Dr. Bob Bunnell, Director of Athletics and Recreation at Centenary. “His message and communication style are frank, open, and tremendously effective in conveying the seriousness of this epidemic in society. I have witnessed his talks several times in the past, and have been impressed by his ability to reach his audience and make a difference in the way that young men view their responsibility to change the culture.”

McPherson was an All-American quarterback at Syracuse University and played in both the NFL and the Canadian Football League. As captain of the undefeated 1987 Syracuse football team, he set numerous school records, led the nation in passing, was second in the Heisman Trophy voting, and won the inaugural Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award in addition to more than 18 other national awards. McPherson was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2008 and in 2013 Syracuse retired his #9 jersey.

In 1995 McPherson became the director of Sport in Society’s Mentors in Violence Prevention Program and soon became a national leader and advocate for the prevention of sexual and domestic violence. Since that time, he has conducted workshops and delivered lectures for more than 250 college campuses, community organizations, and national sports and violence prevention organizations, reaching more than 1 million people. His presentations on dating violence, gender, leadership, and relationships draw on his career as a professional athlete to address complex social justice issues. McPherson has received numerous honors in recognition of his advocacy, including the Frederick Douglass Men of Strength Award given by Men Can Stop Rape and a Leadership Award from the National Center for Victims of Crime.

“Centenary is proud to sponsor this event as a part of the College’s ongoing commitment to prevent sexual violence on college campuses and in the community,” says Dr. Karen Soul, Centenary’s Vice Provost for Academic Affairs. “As an It’s On Us Campus Innovation Partner School, Centenary remains at the forefront of the national effort to educate and empower students, faculty, and staff to end sexual violence on college campuses.”

McPherson will meet with Centenary students, parents, and faculty and staff during the day on August 26. His event at the Gold Dome that evening is free and open to the public and is especially recommended for men of all ages, particularly high school and college-age boys and their parents.

For more information, contact 318.869.5067. Centenary’s Gold Dome is located on Kings Highway at Woodlawn Street. Parking is available behind the Dome (turn at Alexander Avenue) or across Kings Highway.

For more information about Don McPherson and his advocacy work, visit donaldmcpherson.com.