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UTM alumna to speak at graduation

Published: Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, December 5, 2012 13:12

Cheri Childress, an alumna of the UTM, will address graduates at the university’s fall commencement exercises beginning 11 a.m. on Dec. 15 in the Kathleen and Tom Elam Center on Mt. Pelia Road in Martin.

Childress received her bachelor’s degree in secondary education and social work from UTM in 1972 and later earned her Master of Science in Education in 1978. She has since served as director of social services at Milan General Hospital, taught in the Gibson County Special School District and evaluated Tennessee principals through the State of Tennessee Better Schools Program.

Childress has also served as director of student services at the West Tennessee School of the Deaf in Jackson and is currently the co-owner of 10 Subway Sandwich Restaurants throughout the West Tennessee area and the CandyLand Gift Shoppe in Milan.

In addition to her position as vice-chair of the College of Business and Global Affairs at UTM, Childress remains an active member of the West Tennessee community by serving on multiple boards across the region, including those for the Kirkland Cancer Center, Milan General Hospital, UTM WestStar Leadership Program and the Gibson County Sports Hall of Fame.

Childress has received many awards since her time at UTM, including the Tennessee Economic for Women Excellence Award in 2007 and the Sterling Award in 2011, which named her one of the 20 most influential women in West Tennessee.

Her Subway Sandwich Restaurant franchises have also been recognized for their excellence, winning the Franchise of the Year award in 1996 for the West Tennessee, North Mississippi and Northeast Arkansas areas. Her locations also won National Franchise of the Year, selected from over 15,000 Subway restaurants nationally and internationally.

Childress is also the co-founder of the Living the Dream, Champions of Hope program and the Childress Foundation, which assists cancer survivors with expenses.

UTM commencement exercises are open to the public.

For more information, contact the UTM Office of University Relations at 731-881-7615.

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