Pilot Corp. Commemorates 50th Anniversary with Investment in Knoxville's Future

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Pilot Corp. Commemorates 50th Anniversary with Investment in Knoxville's Future

Posted: 11/20/2008
Pilot Corporation today announced a $1 million donation to Knoxville parks to build a lasting legacy for the people who use parks and to celebrate the company's 50th anniversary. 

"We are pleased to celebrate our 50th anniversary by giving back to the community that means so much to us," said Pilot founder Jim Haslam in a ceremony at Morningside Park, east of downtown Knoxville. "By making this donation to Knoxville's parks, our gift will benefit Knoxvillians for generations to come, which is important to us. We hope this gift will inspire others to make similar contributions."

Pilot Corporation
Haslam added that the gift is being given in honor of Pilot's customers and employees and the people of Knoxville, who helped make Pilot's 50-year history possible.

Legacy Parks Foundation
Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam and Legacy Parks Foundation Executive Director Carol Evans were on hand to accept the donation. "This contribution will be a tremendous benefit to our city's parks and the future of Knoxville," said Haslam. "Knoxville's parks and greenways are a source of pride and enjoyment for all of us." 
The gift goes to Legacy Parks Foundation to be disbursed as follows:

Morningside Park
$250,000 to Morningside Park. Morningside Park is located east of downtown Knoxville, adjacent to Alex Haley Heritage Square. The park includes 23 acres, a playground, a disc (Frisbee) golf course and walking trails. Improvements will focus largely on paving the greenway trails, pruning the hundreds of trees throughout the property, and general work to spruce up this urban park.

Inskip Park
$250,000 to Inskip Park. Inskip Park is located on Bruhin Road in north Knoxville. In addition to a large outdoor swimming pool, the park includes 12 acres, a playground, tennis courts and a sand volleyball court. Funds will be used to install a walking trail; enhance the playground equipment; repair and improve the tennis courts; install landscaping; and pave the parking lot.

Knoxville Urban Wilderness & Historic Corridor
$500,000 to the Knoxville Urban Wilderness and Historic Corridor. Funds will go to acquire additional property for this recently launched project, Legacy Parks Foundation's most ambitious project to date. The corridor is a 1,000-acre conservation area to complement the South Knoxville waterfront development. It lies between the Log Haven Conservation Area and Ijams Nature Center. In the center are Fort Higley, which served as the western anchor of the Federal line, protecting the city from Confederate troops during the 17-day Siege of Knoxville and the Battle of Fort Sanders; Fort Stanley Ridge, a 22-acre wooded parcel off Chapman Highway containing the Civil War fort where union troops were billeted; and Fort Dickerson Park, a Civil War battlefield and a scenic 85-acre park.

"We are so grateful for this donation," said Legacy Parks Foundation Executive Director Carol Evans. "The corridor links the assets of the existing Knoxville parks, Ijams Nature Center and the future wilderness properties into an incredible historical, recreational, cultural and environmental experience. We commend Pilot for commemorating their anniversary by giving back to the community in such a meaningful and lasting way." 
Jimmy Haslam, president and chief executive officer of Pilot Travel Centers LLC, was unable to attend the event but was equally enthusiastic about the gift. "Quality parks increase the quality of life for citizens, increase tourism, and typically result in increased property values for surrounding properties. We hope everyone in our community benefits from Pilot's gift."