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Jerry Hanner, Jr.

Jerry Hanner was a member of the Men’s USA Taekwondo Team that won gold and silver medals in Rimini, Italy, in 2001

Office of Advancement - Staff

Jerry Hanner, Jr., has studied and practiced the martial art of taekwondo since he was five years old. He applies the core tenets of this discipline – courtesy, integrity, perseverance, self-control and indomitable spirit – in his capacity as director of development in the Haslam College of Business’s Office of Advancement. Application of this creed, along with other spiritual principles, shape Hanner’s ability to set goals, to overcome objections, to lead, to follow and – most importantly – to listen.

“I believe that, in development and relationship-building, you must ask the open-ended questions and listen to the motivating factors of why and how the donor wants to be involved,” he says.

Taking others’ needs into account in order to better serve them may be a quality Hanner sharpened through immersion in taekwondo’s precepts, but his upbringing also contributed to this aptitude. He credits his family for instilling in him a sense of service. For example, he recalls helping his father build a house for his grandmother “from the ground up.”

“I will always be in remembrance of serving people and community because of the experiences I had as a youth and the importance of giving set by my own family and father,” he says.

Before joining the Office of Development in 2018, Hanner worked developing sales territories for multiple contingent labor companies, and, as Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s area manager in West Knoxville, he was a top-tier sales performer for nine years. To fulfill the major gift needs of the Haslam College of Business, he plans to apply the skills he honed through his prior work experience, by meeting with as many potential donors and alumni as possible and nurturing relationships with them. In building these connections, he will strive to follow the vision set forth by Dean Stephen Mangum and to communicate the quality of the university’s brand.

“The University of Tennessee has a strong and valuable brand, and our alumni deserve to be well-informed about the future of UT,” he says.

Excited to interact with the many Haslam alumni who have a true affinity for the university, Hanner says that “cultivation of the servant’s heart” is the most rewarding aspect of his job.

“As I create relationships with alumni and cultivate their philanthropy, I will have the chance to see firsthand how my work impacts those who are in need,” he explains.

Born in Chattanooga, Hanner graduated from Chattanooga Christian High School and received his undergraduate degree from nearby Covenant College. He was a member of the Men’s USA Taekwondo Team that won gold and silver medals in Rimini, Italy, in 2001, holds multiple state top-five rankings in the sport and plans to test for his 4th degree in it in 2019. Hanner is also an avid woodworker, creating and building pieces for his loved ones, and he plays basketball in at least two leagues each year and “in just about any pickup game I can find.”