Alumni Hall of Fame Inductees » 2009 Inductees

2009 Inductees

1st Annual Dobyns-Bennett High School Alumni Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony: October 15, 2009

CLASS OF 1927 

Robert Lee "Bobby" Dodd
Robert Lee "Bobby" Dodd was born in Galax, Virginia. After moving to Kingsport he excelled at several sports at Dobyns-Bennett High School. He was an All-American football player at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and later the college football coach at Georgia Tech. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame as a player and coach, something only three people have accomplished. 

While Bobby Dodd was a determined competitor, he cared deeply for those who played for him. Unlike some other coaches of his time, he did not believe in winning at any cost; he truly believed that the most important aspect of college football was the college football player.

In 1988 Georgia Tech named it's stadium Bobby Dodd Stadium in honor of his legendary coach.

Coach Dodd passed away on June 21, 1988.


John R. "Jack" King
Immediately following graduation in 1943, John R. "Jack" King was placed on a bus to the army where he served in Patton's Third Army in World War II returning to Kingsport in 1945.

In 1946 he enrolled at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill graduating in 1949 and returning to Kingsport to work in the family owned business - The Mason & Dixon Lines, Inc.

Jack later became the president of Mason & Dixon and the chairman of the board of Mason & Dixon Tank Lines, Inc. At one time Mason & Dixon was the largest family owned trucking company in the nation.

Jack served as chairmen of many boards and contributed greatly to the community and state.


Fred "Pal" Barger
Fred "Pal" Barger admits he copied the idea of a small restaurant called 2J's located in Texas and turned that idea into an award winning restaurant called, PAL'S. He opened his first fast food restaurant on Revere Street, downtown Kingsport in 1956.

He has now expanded PAL'S to 18 locations in Tennessee and Virgina. In 2001 PAL'S won the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award becoming the only restaurant company to receive the award. Pal has received many awards and recognitions for his service on the national, state and local levels. He was the 2001 Outstanding Alumnus of East Tennessee State University and was also inducted into the Tennessee Restaurant Association Hall of Fame.


Kenneth W. "Ken" Simonds
Kenneth W. "Ken" Simonds attended George Washington University on a football scholarship for a year, but transferred to East Tennessee State University graduating in 1957.

After graduation, he joined IBM in Kingsport and worked his way up in the company to director of data processing services. In 1975 be became director of sales for Amdahl Corporation and then executive vice-preseident and chief operation officer. Ken retired in 1984. In 1985 he came out of retirement to join Teradata Corporation and in 1992 he sold Teradata and retired!

He was the 2000 Outstanding Alumnus of East Tennessee State University. He received numerous business and educational awards.

Ken passed away on October 11, 2009.


Dr. Jack McConnell
Dr. Jack McConnell earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Virginia and a medical degree from the University of Tennessee - Knoxville.

He began his career as the corporate director of advanced technology with Johnson & Johnson. During his career, he helped contribute to the development of the polio vaccine, the TB Tine Test for tuberculosis and Tylenol tablets.

After retiring he moved to Hilton Head Island. Jack realized the workers on the island did not have health benefits. He saw a need and met that need by recruiting supporters to open a medical clinic staffed by volunteers from the medical profession. Today there are 75 clinics throughout the U.S.

Jack has received many honors and awards during his career.