Ron Hibbard Toyota in Gallatin, TN, in conjunction with the Toyota Corporation, donated a $10,000 gift to the general scholarship fund of Volunteer State Community College.
“The Toyota Corp., in their philanthropic desires, . . . [matches] up to $5,000 for charity,” said Ron Hibbard, owner of the dealership.
“Vol State just has to publicize that Hibbard Toyota made the donation, and the Toyota Corp. will match that gift, dollar for dollar, so Vol State ends up with $10,000 for their scholarship fund,” said Hibbard.
“Ron Hibbard has been a member of the Vol State Foundation’s board of trustees for four years,” said Karen Mitchell, vice president of resource development and executive director of the foundation.
“Hibbard knew of the need for funds for the general scholarship fund.
The purpose of the board of trustees is to try to help raise funds for the school and to do things behind the scenes to make sure the school is as successful as it can be,” said Mitchell.
“From our perspective, as a company, we are part of the Gallatin community and Vol State is absolutely part of the community,” said Hibbard.
“What that does is increase the base of people who can go out and find better employment,” he said.
“Well, the better employment, the more money they make. The more money they make, the more disposable income they have,” said Hibbard, “and the more disposable income they have, the more cars we sell.”
“Of all the things we do in the community, like the $10,000, that doesn’t count our support of the Vol State teams. We put scoreboards all over the campus for every sports team they have,” he said.
“We are part of the annual golf tournament with coach Bobby Hudson, to help with the Vol State athletic department,” said Hibbard.
“When we first came here 15 years ago, most of our advertising was ‘Ron Hibbard Toyota, across the street from Volunteer State Community College,’” said Hibbard.
“Former Vol State president, Dr. Hal Ramer, came over and took the time to thank us for mentioning Vol State in our advertising,” said Hibbard.
“Dr. Ramer and I did a lot of things together. He was just a great humanitarian and just a wonderful man,” said Hibbard.
Each year, the foundation awards more than 200 student scholarships totaling nearly $300,000. In the last 20 years, the foundation has awarded more than 3700 scholarships and raised more than $10 million, according to the foundation’s web site.
“If we measure success by what we give back, then we’ve been very successful,” said Hibbard.