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Moxley Carmichael donates 20 copies of ‘The Final Season: The Perseverance of Pat Summitt’ to Knox County Public Library

October 14, 2016

Knoxville-based public relations firm Moxley Carmichael recently donated 20 copies of “The Final Season: The Perseverance of Pat Summitt” to Knox County Public Library. The inspirational account of Pat Summitt’s last season as head coach of the Lady Vols was authored by Moxley Carmichael writer/editor Maria M. Cornelius.

Cornelius began working on the book three years ago after signing a contract with The University of Tennessee Press. The book was released Oct. 1 and sold out the initial run of 4,000 copies. A second printing is underway. Moxley Carmichael’s donation ensures that all 19 facilities of Knox County Public Library will have a copy of the book.


From left: Janet Drumheller and Mary Pom Claiborne, both of Knox County Public Library, accept 20 copies of “The Final Season: The Perseverance of Pat Summitt” from Alan Carmichael, far right, and Maria Cornelius, both of Moxley Carmichael. The books, which were donated to the library by Moxley Carmichael, will be in circulation at every library branch and the main downtown facility. A book also will be placed in the permanent and non-circulated collection at McClung Museum.

“Public libraries are essential to every city, and the Knox County Public Library is a vital part of our community,” said Cynthia Moxley, CEO of Moxley Carmichael. “When Maria was working on the book about Pat Summitt’s final season we knew it would be a wonderful opportunity to give back to our community library facilities and continue to tell Pat’s story for generations to come.”

Summitt was the winningest coach in the history of NCAA Division I basketball. With 1,098 victories and eight national championships, she established the Lady Vols as the top women’s athletics program in the country. She was diagnosed with early onset dementia in 2011 and coached her final season in 2011-12. Summitt died June 28, 2016, at the age of 64.

In the book, Cornelius tells the story of Summitt’s final coaching season through the eyes of those who knew her best – the coaches, players and support staff. Cornelius witnessed the season and traveled coast-to-coast to cover the team, including games against Rutgers in Piscataway, New Jersey, and Stanford in Palo Alto, California.

Beginning with Summitt’s diagnosis in 2011 and continuing through the final game of the 2011-12 season in Des Moines, Iowa, in the NCAA Tournament, the book offers readers a behind-the-scenes look at the conclusion of Summitt’s coaching career, detailing how her diagnosis impacted Lady Vol players, staff and fans from the perspective of a sports writer who observed from the sidelines.

“We are very grateful for this generous donation,” said Janet Drumheller, head of collection development for Knox County Public Library. “Pat Summitt will always be such an inspiration to our community, and we are so happy to share her story with our patrons through Maria’s book.”

The 20 copies of “The Final Season: The Perseverance of Pat Summitt” will be available at all 19 facilities of Knox County Public Library.

“I grew up in public libraries – literally,” Cornelius said. “We moved quite a bit when I was a child, and I lived in Georgia, Virginia, North Carolina, Missouri, Tennessee and South Carolina. My mother made sure I got a library card at every stop along the way. I have always been grateful for the impact that public libraries had on my life – access to books is a big reason I became a writer – and I am so thankful to Moxley Carmichael for making this donation.”

To learn more or to the order “The Final Season: The Perseverance of Pat Summitt,” visit

About Moxley Carmichael

East Tennessee’s premier public and media relations firm, Moxley Carmichael provides strategic communications services to leading local, regional and national companies and organizations. Utilizing its team’s talent and experience, Moxley Carmichael excels at raising client visibility in the marketplace and community. As the firm prepares to celebrate its 25th anniversary, Moxley Carmichael has provided a full range of services, including public, government, media and community relations; corporate communications; branding; research; graphic design; advertising; digital media; web design; media and networking training and more. Moxley Carmichael is located in the historic Miller’s Building on Gay Street in downtown Knoxville. For more information, visit

About Knox County Public Library

Since 1886, the people of Knox County have had an impressive collection of library resources available to them. As the oldest continuously operating public library in the state of Tennessee, the Library has a proud heritage. Today, the Knox County Public Library is pleased to offer more than 1.5 million books, periodicals, compact discs, films, audiobooks and downloadables through 19 locations across Knox County including one of the premier historical and genealogical collections in the Southeast.

About Maria M. Cornelius

Maria M. Cornelius has written about the Lady Vols basketball program since 1998 for local, regional and national media. A freelance writer for Inside Tennessee, Cornelius lives in Knoxville and continues to cover the program. She works full-time as a writer/editor for Moxley Carmichael, the leading public relations and communications firm in East Tennessee.