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In Memoriam – Dr. Thomas Strong, 1945-2020

Dr. Thomas Strong, the longtime water ski coach at the University of Alabama, passed away on Thursday, May 28. He was 74 years old. Beloved by students, alumni and colleagues throughout the nation, Dr. “Tom” Strong offered extraordinary care and support for students throughout his stellar 38-year career at the University of Alabama.

Visitation will be Monday, June 1 at First Baptist Church of Tuscaloosa from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., to be followed by a graveside service from 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. A family-only graveside service will follow. Social distancing is suggested but there is plenty of room and there are no anticipated issues should you attend.

He earned two degrees from UA, including a master’s degree in guidance and student personnel, and a doctoral degree in educational administration and planning. Strong’s exemplary service included terms as the Dean of Students and Associate Vice President of Student Affairs. He founded the UA water ski team.

He provided administrative leadership for an extensive list of areas on campus. Student Recreation, Greek Life, Orientation, Student Media, Community Service, Residential Communities, the Career Center, the Counseling Center, the On Call Dean Program, Disabled Student Services, Veterans Student Services, International Student and Scholar Services, Graduate Student Services, and Parent and Family Programs are only a sampling of offices that benefited from his counsel and support.

Credited as a steadfast friend to students and an example for all, his establishment of the Crimson Care program and the former Learning Skills Center demonstrated his loyalty to assisting members of the UA family.

He was a long-time supporter of Crimson Tide athletics. He wrote the initial proposal for a women’s athletic program and served as the first director. His contributions to the University will continue to have a lasting and significant impact on students of UA’s past, present and future.




















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