Donald Driver

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 3, 2012

NFL star Donald Driver, who is currently a contestant on TV’s Dancing with the Stars, tries a few steps with fan Amy Franklin following the annual Boys and Girls Club banquet in Batesville last Thursday. Driver was the keynote speaker and made a $5,000 donation to the club. The Panolian photo by Angie Ledbetter

Driver forks over $5,000 for club

By Myra Bean

Green Bay Packers all-time leading receiver Donald Driver came to Batesville Thursday night and left a big impression with those who heard him.

The Alcorn State University alumnus drew some fellow alumni to the Boys and Girls Club annual Steak and Steak dinner at the Batesville Civic Center.

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Driver’s personable disposition made him an immediate hit with the people who may not pay attention to the NFL football and know how well-loved he is by the Wisconsin crowd.

Driver is currently in the national spotlight as a contestant on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and made a quick trip from Hollywood to Batesville to honor his commitment to the local organization.

In his talk, Driver compared the longevity of the Green Bay Packers with the longevity of the Boys and Girls Club. He said both still exist because of tradition and because of the communities that support them.

He then went on to further win the hearts and minds of the crowd by announcing a $5,000 donation to the Boys and Girls Club from the Donald Driver Foundation.

A member of the new Northwest Miss. Foundation for the Blind asked Driver to join the organization for $5. Driver went one better and gave the organization $1,000.

Beri Glover was honored as the Boys and Girls Club Youth of the Year. Among her citations for her achievements is a certificate signed by President Barack Obama. Glover, who is a junior at South Panola High School, recently scored 31 on her ACT.

Four high school seniors were honored with their lifetime Boys and Girls memberships cards: Chris Townsend, Christa Brown, Crystal Contreras and Lawndarius Fondren.

The Panola County Community Foundation presented the club with a donation of $500.
After the banquet, Driver signed and autographed his three children’s books that were on sale and also posed for photographs with fans.