“I give because I want to make sure that those who are not as fortunate as I am have what they need.”

“Giving back to the community is simply about doing what’s right,” according to Virginia Tech’s new Head Men’s Basketball Coach James Johnson.

“We are really fortunate to have jobs at Virginia Tech and it’s important that we remember that and find ways to help others who are not as fortunate,” said Johnson who took on the head coaching position on May 1, having served as one of the team’s assistant coaches for five previous seasons.

A native of Powhatan, Va. and one of six children, times were tough for Johnson’s family financially. His mother was a prison nurse, while his father was part of the housekeeping staff at the University of Richmond's basketball arena.

His success now, as an adult, allows him to help others. Organizations close to his heart include his church and the American Diabetes Association. He also gives to the Virginia Tech Athletics Department.

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Head Men’s Basketball Coach James Johnson takes pride in giving back to the community and teaches his players to do the same.

In addition to giving financially, Johnson also believes in giving back to the community with his time and that’s something he teaches his players as well.

“It’s important for them to realize how valuable being a member of the Virginia Tech basketball team is,” said Johnson. “Being a college athlete is an experience that so many young children dream of, and one so few of them ever achieve.”

Several times each year, the men’s basketball team spends time with children in the community. Reading to elementary schools students and visiting children in the hospital each holiday season are among the team’s favorite ways to give back.

Unlike 5:30 a.m. practices, community visits are one of the things his players look forward to, he says.

Please consider donating to any of the 1,300 charities participating in this year’s Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign. The online CVC Pledge System enables salaried Virginia Tech employees to make fast, easy, and secure donations via payroll deduction. All donations are tax deductible, as allowed by law.

First published on: Nov 6, 2012

Written by Employee Communication Manager Laura Neff-Henderson.