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April 19, 2001--Tennessee State University has renamed the Heiman Street Residential
Complex the Harold E. Ford Sr. and John N. Ford Residential Complex. The Ford brothers
were joined by other family members for ceremonies help April 18 on the grounds of the

"It is wonderful to see so many senators here today; we can hold a budget meeting right
now," Harold Ford said, as he pointed out dignitaries in the audience. They included
Lieutenant Governor John Wilder, Deputy Governor Wendell Moore, Senator Gene Elsea,
Senator Doug Henry, Senator James Kyle Jr., and Senator Randy McNally.

After receiving commemorative gifts, the Fords surprised the audience with a gift to Tennessee State of $500,000.

"This is a truly outstanding donation, and the Fords can be sure Tennessee State
University will put it to good use," said TSU President James Hefner.

There are 12 siblings in the Ford family, most of whom graduated from Tennessee State
University. On hand for the presentation were brother Joe Ford; sisters Joyce Ford Miller
and Ophelia Ford; nephews James Ford Jr. and Edmund Ford; and Autumn Ford, John Ford's
daughter. Harold Ford Jr., U.S. Representative, relayed his regrets for not being able to
attend, as did Governor Don Sundquist and former vice president Al Gore.

"I am proud today," said Lt. Gov. Wilder. "Is it because of the bricks and mortar we are
recognizing today? No, though we need bricks and mortar. Is it because of Tennessee State
University? No, though that is reason to be proud.

"I am proud because I look back to Purdy, Tennessee, where Otis Floyd [former president of
Tennessee State University] attended school in a one-room schoolhouse. He let me walk by
his side. I am proud when I think of Odell Horton [United States District Judge for the
Western District of Tennessee] working in a cotton patch in Hardin County. He let me walk
by his side. But nothing makes me prouder than this family. I love you; God bless you."

U.S. Representative Harold Ford Sr. became the first African American from the state of
Tennessee to be elected to Congress and served from 1975 until his retirement in 1997.

Senator John N. Ford has served in the Tennessee State Senate since 1974. He has been a
key supporter of Tennessee State University throughout his legislative tenure and played a
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