The Home Depot Announces OAKWOOD UNIVERSITY & KNOXVILLE COLLEGE as the Top Winners for the 2013 RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL Campus Improvement Grant Program


New York– May 03, 2013 – The Home Depot announced today the 2013 winners of its popular RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL Campus Improvement Grant Program. As many Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) continue to struggle for funding, this initiative, now in its fourth year, was designed to specifically reinvigorate HBCUs. A total of 67 HBCUs competed for grants totaling $195,000 for sustainable on-campus improvements. Oakwood University will receive the Grand Prize, a $50,000 Tier I grant for constructing an outdoor recreational facility for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and other campus visitors. Knoxville College will receive the $25,000 Campus Pride Grant. The Tier II grant winners include Alcorn State University, Alcorn, MS; Barber-Scotia College, Concord, NC; Bennett College, Greensboro, NC; Bluefield State College, Bluefield, WV; Cheney University, Cheney, NC; Fisk University, Nashville, TN; Lincoln University of Missouri, Jefferson City, MO; South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, SC; Texas College, Tyler, TX; Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL; University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Princess Anne, MD; and Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, OH.

“The RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL program gains incredible momentum each year,” says Melissa Brown, manager, Multicultural Marketing, The Home Depot. “With more than 2.6 million votes received this year, the HBCU community truly came together to support the participating HBCUs. Each year, we continue to get thoughtful proposals for projects to enhance some of our most precious jewels, our HBCUs. The Home Depot congratulates all participants, but specifically Oakwood University and Knoxville College and the 12 Tier II winners.”

Participating schools took it upon themselves to get the word out about their quest for a RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL grant. By utilizing e-blasts, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, school websites, campus newspapers and radio, more than 2.6 million votes were received, compared to 1.7 million votes last year. This was a 55 percent increase from last year.

The RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL winners were chosen by a combination of public, online voting and reviewed by a distinguished panel of judges, which this year included Laz Alonso, actor and star of the NBC hit Deception; Dr. Lezli Baskerville, CEO & president, NAFEO; Gregory Moore, Esq., commissioner, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC); Londell McMillan, entertainment attorney and publisher of Jones Magazine and The Source Magazine; Duer Sharp, commissioner, Southwestern Athletic Conference; and Keshia Knight Pulliam, actress.

“It was an honor to be part of this year’s RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL,” says Alonso. “I am a proud Historically Black College and University (HBCU) alumnus and it was invigorating to see the participation and enthusiasm from the alumni, students and HBCU family. In addition, I was impressed with the proposals submitted by the participating schools. Their ideas, both in terms of greening and sustainability programs, were impressive. RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL,” he continued, “is a great program from The Home Depot and it is a creative way for HBCU alumni to support their school. Congratulations to all of this year’s winners.”

Nationally syndicated radio personalities, including Tom Joyner, helped spread the word, further showing their support for The Home Depot and the HBCU community by utilizing their airwaves to help make the public aware of this initiative. Also, on March 20 Brown appeared on various radio stations around the country to encourage online voting by students, alumni, family, friends and supporters of HBCUs during the program.
The RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL Campus Improvement Grant Program supports the growing sustainability movement by providing special consideration to eco-friendly project proposals. With the goal of issuing grants for projects that have a lasting impact, this year’s winning projects include improving landscaping, installing additional lighting on campus and making repairs to student centers.

Online voting for the 2013 program took place from February 18 to April 15, 2013. This year, the RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL program received an outpouring of support from HBCU alumni, family, friends and the community, who all joined together to show their school pride and spirit as they voted for their favorite HBCUs and projects to make an impact for generations to come.

RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL winning projects will begin in Fall 2013.
For more information on the RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL program, visit

About The Home Depot
The Home Depot is the world’s largest home improvement specialty retailer, with 2,257 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, 10 Canadian provinces and Mexico. In fiscal 2012, The Home Depot had sales of $74.8 billion and earnings of $4.5 billion. The Company employs more than 300,000 associates. The Home Depot’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: HD) and is included in the Dow Jones industrial average and Standard & Poor’s 500 index.

The 2013 Home Depot RETOOL YOUR SCHOOL Winners:
• $50,000 Grand Prize Winner
Oakwood University – (HUNTSVILLE, AL)
• $25,000 Campus Pride Winner
Knoxville College – (KNOXVILLE, TN)
• $10,000 Prize Winners
Alcorn State University – (ALCORN, MS)
Barber-Scotia College – (CONCORD, NC)
Bennett College – (GREENSBORO, NC)
Bluefield State College – (BLUEFIELD, NC)
Cheney University – (CHEYNEY, PA)
Fisk University – (NASHVILLE, TN)
Lincoln University of Missouri – (JEFFERSON CITY, MO)
South Carolina State University – (ORANGEBURG, SC)
Texas College – (TYLER, TX)
Tuskegee University – (TUSKEGEE, AL)
University of Maryland Eastern Shore – (PRINCESS ANNE, MD)
Wilberforce University – (WILBERFORCE, OH)

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