Chris Parker almost didn't attend Lipscomb University, but he made a last minute decision to become part of the baseball team. It turned out to be a good decision. He excelled on the field and in the classroom. He majored in management and marketing and later attended the University of Tennessee College of Law. He works in the financial management field. He spent some time this week talking with lipscombsports.com.
What years did you play at Lipscomb? Who were your coaches?
"I played from 1999 through 2003. I was a left fielder.
"When I came to Lipscomb Mel Brown was the coach. But I redshirted my freshman year and I didn't get a chance to play for Mel Brown because he left the school after my freshman year.
"I played for Wynn Fletcher the last three years at Lipscomb."
Why did you choose Lipscomb?
"I was enrolled at Vanderbilt. I was going to go there to play baseball as an invited walk-on. That summer I played baseball with several players who were going to Lipscomb and I got close to them.
"Mel Brown gave me a better scholarship offer. The summer before my freshman year I made the late decision to sign and play with Lipscomb."
What is your fondest athletic memory at Lipscomb?
"We beat Florida International in Florida at the time when they were in the top 10 in the country. That definitely stands out.
"I had a two-home run game against MTSU. It was a slugfest. We lost 21-14 (March 2001).
"We beat the University of Kentucky In Lexington. Anytime you can beat an SEC team it is a good win."
Who had the biggest influence on you during your athletic career at Lipscomb? How?
"I would really say it was my teammates. They were all quality, hard-working, disciplined, good guys. You are with them every day and you work hard together.
"They were good, loyal Christian men. There were some good upperclassmen. Their work ethic, and how they handled themselves, definitely was a good influence on me."
What is your fondest non-athletic memory from your time at Lipscomb?
"I started dating my wife, Kristen, at Lipscomb. We went to the same kindergarten. We went to separate schools. She started at Auburn and then went to Belmont. She transferred to Lipscomb the spring of her sophomore year. We started dating at the end of the spring semester our sophomore year.
"I would also say the friendships. There are so many lifelong friendships I developed at Lipscomb. I am so close with so many people I went to college with and still see on a very frequent basis or work with. The impact of the teachers and students I still have contact with today is strong."
What is the most valuable thing you gained or learned from your time at Lipscomb?
"There are so many things. I would say treating others the right way, doing things the right way, the value of hard work and a work ethic in balancing athletics, academics and the social aspects of school. You have to develop a work ethic and a disciplined approach to be successful both athletically and academically.
"I was able to learn how to balance those two things while I was at Lipscomb. That is a mentality I developed while at Lipscomb that I still have today. We had workouts at 5 or 5:30 in the morning. Then you had class all day and practice in the afternoon. Then you would be on the road for games.
"It required discipline and hard work. Getting help from others was critical. You have to surround yourself with a community of good people."
'There was also the spiritual side. Having the spiritual aspect was critical."
Who was your favorite professor? Why?
"I majored in both management and marketing.
“Jeanna Boulware was one of my favorites. She taught human resources and a wide variety of business classes. She was more or less like a friend. She was very good as a teacher. She was very knowledgeable. I had her for a lot of classes. I liked her teaching style and approach.
"I really liked Lee Camp. I had him for several Bible classes. He was just a great thought provoker. I always enjoyed his teaching style, his knowledge and his perspective. I always liked his classes."
Where do you live now?
"We are building a house in Brentwood, Tennessee."
Who is your employer? What is your occupation? What does your position entail?
"I received my J.D. from the University of Tennessee. Lipscomb prepared me for law school. I remember talking to the recruitment coordinator at the law school and she said all of the students from Lipscomb seemed to do very well. There were two or three students from Lipscomb who came to law school with me and they all did well.
"I didn’t decide to go to law school until the end of my senior year. I took a year off and got my securities licenses and worked in financial advising. I went to law school from 2004 through 2007.
"I practiced corporate and securities law for Bradley, Arant, Boult, Cummings from 2007 through the summer of 2011.
"I moved over to Thoroughbred Financial Services in 2011. I am a financial advisor. I am also corporate counsel for the company. I keep my law license active. But most of what I do is financial advising.
Tell us about your family.
"My wife's name is Kristen. We have three girls - Mason, 7; Maggie, 5; and Mary Owen is 2."
My email address is email@example.com.