‘Vol For Life’ looks to keep Chamber Breakfast S-Series lively

Knox County business owners have an opportunity to hear how University of Tennessee Football “Vol for Life” Derrick Furlow Jr. handled his transition from a football career to business when Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce hosts its Breakfast Speaker Series.

The event, which is “open to anyone interested,” is slated for Tuesday, Feb. 18, with the breakfast starting at 7:30 a.m. and the program starting at 8 a.m., said FWKCC president/CEO Julie Blaylock.

“We’re excited (about the event). We’ve not done anything like this,” she added.

“I’m looking forward to seeing you there,” Furlow said in a video link on the Chamber’s website. “I’m going to be covering some of my tricks and principles that I learned from the game of sports and how to apply those to life and in business.

“I realize this: If it’s good enough for sports, it’s good enough for business,” he added.

Tickets, which are $30 for Chamber members, $50 for non-members, $15 for students from middle school to college, and $275 for a table of 10 seats, can be purchased online on the Chamber’s website, www.farragutchamber.com.

Furlow, who is author of “What’s Next? How to Transition Like a Champion,” also is a motivational speaker, entrepreneur and founder/owner of his online consulting business, Sports Life Business. His message kicks off the 2020 season of Breakfast Series “on a positive note,” Blaylock said.

When the Chamber was contacted by Furlow via social media about speaking, Blaylock said his message was “a good match.”

She said the Chamber “vets every single one of (those requests)” to be “informative, educational, entertaining and uplifting.

“Sometimes it may not be all those things, but when it can be, we like to do that,” Blaylock added.

“The fact that he’s a Vol for Life, a former UT Football player, there’s some attraction in that because we’re all big fans, especially after this past season. We also talked about the fact that

our target audience is business, so after he explained to me his story, where he came from, how that translated to the choices he’s had to make over the course of his career — which now is not football, it’s business — we thought what he had to share with our members would be really, really helpful.”

An Atlanta, Georgia, native, Furlow grew up with many challenges, but sports — football especially — was “the opportunity for him to rise above” adversity, Blaylock said.

However, before Furlow was set to accept one of many football scholarships offered him universities and programs, he tore his ACL, (or anterior cruciate ligament in the knee joint).

“That’s a catastrophic injury in terms of someone’s future career in sports,” Blaylock speculated. “He had to start thinking, at a young age, what he was going to do for the rest of his life, if it wasn’t going to be sports.

Unfortunate events can “really paralyze us in terms of how we move forward,” she noted.

But, Furlow turned lemons into lemonade and transitioned into business, which is about what he will be speaking, “How do you handle transition?” Blaylock said.

Presenting sponsors for the Breakfast Series are Town of Farragut and Knox County; community sponsor is Mike Baker Insurance Consulting; and media sponsors include farragutpress.