CHAPEL HILL — Cornerstone Charter's Jason Tew is one of eight winners of the N.C. High School Athletic Association's annual Homer Thompson Memorial “Eight Who Make a Difference” Awards. These awards are presented in partnership with the N.C. Farm Bureau and recognize one individual in each of the NCHSAA's regions who serves as an excellent role model to student-athletes through a positive and dedicated approach to coaching.
Tew, the volleyball and softball coach at Cornerstone Charter, was nominated by Jennifer Martin, a teacher at the school.
“Not only is Jason Tew the volleyball and softball coach at Cornerstone Charter Academy, but he is also the leader of our Campus Life program," Martin wrote in her nomination letter. "His desire to develop athletes is defined by him placing a strong emphasis on developing character. Coach Tew repeatedly tells his teams to 'never sacrifice your integrity for a point/run.' He is a leading example that winning is not the factor on which we will place our importance. After each contest, win or lose, every player shakes the hand of the officials to show their gratitude. There are countless examples that he models each day to his student athletes.
"A positive role model is someone that should be imitated," Martin added. "I strive each day to follow his example as a teacher, coach and colleague. He stands alone as an individual worthy of the 'Eight Who Make A Difference Award.' ”
Other winners for 2020 are: Kristie Thach, Perquimans; Bevin Stokes, Pender; Jasmine Brown, Holly Springs; Jeff Nance, Hope Mills Gray’s Creek; Mike Zimmerman, Charlotte Harding; Laura Barry, Watauga; and Michael Connelly, West Henderson.
The awards are presented in honor of Homer Thompson, a member of the NCHSAA Hall of Fame Class of 1994. Thompson spent 35 years as a head football coach, compiling a 238-129-5 career record. A 1951 graduate of Catawba College, Thompson coached two years at Oxford Orphanage, seven at Gray High School in Winston-Salem and 26 years at Parkland, including 19 as athletics director. He also coached men's and women's basketball and track during his career. A winner of numerous coach of the year awards, Thompson was the N.C. head coach in the 50th Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas and also has coached in the N.C. Coaches Association East-West All-Star game. He has served on the board of directors of the N.C. Coaches Association and the N.C. High School Athletic Directors Association and was past president of the coaches' organization. For 20 years as Parkland AD Thompson helped to organize and run the state wrestling championships.