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Danny Morrison, 6 most impactful dates.

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Number 5 is awesome.

BELMONT — A business leader at the highest level of sports shared his insights with some of the county’s young professionals Tuesday.

Carolina Panthers president Danny Morrison spoke at the Gaston County Junior Chamber of Commerce, better known as the Jaycees, in Belmont. Morrison shared stories from his experience with the National Football League and offered wisdom he’s learned from Panthers owner and founder Jerry Richardson.

Morrison revealed to the group of about 50 Richardson’s five core values that he’s developed over the years. Those values in order are hard work, harmony, team work, listening and respect.

Morrison spent much of his address sharing the six dates from 2011 that had the biggest impact on him:

1. Jan. 11 — Day the Panthers hired Ron Rivera. “He’s been a great hire for the Panthers,” Morrison said. “No ego. He’s unbelievable in his work ethic. He gets along. He brings the whole organization together.”

2. April 28 — Draft night. With the No. 1 overall pick, the Panthers selected quarterback Cam Newton, who seems like a no-brainer now but wasn’t at the time. Morrison said the Panthers’ front office did a tremendous amount of research into Newton. “The more they peeled the onion back, the more they found out what a great competitor he was, great rapport with teammates, excellent work ethic, charisma, brings people together, and he’s done that kind of thing with the Panthers.”

3. Aug. 4 — Collective bargaining agreement was ratified. Richardson, who played a central role in the CBA talks, “woke up every day for three years thinking about the CBA,” Morrison said. “It ended up being good for the players, good for the owners, good for the game, good for the fans.”

4. Sept. 9 — Special father-son moment at breakfast. The Panthers invited Adam Smith, a 4- or 5-year-old with spina bifida who the team made its No. 1 pick in a mock draft earlier in the year as part of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Smith’s father approached Morrison at the breakfast and shared a conversation he had with his son: “(Adam) said, ‘Dad, when am I going to be able to walk like the other boys?’ Dad said to Adam, ‘Well, when are other boys going to be able to be the No. 1 draft pick of the Carolina Panthers?’ And little Adam said, ‘Oh yeah, that’s right.’”

5. Dec. 17 — Richardson attends funeral for longtime PSL owner he didn’t know. The team was in Houston for a game the next day, but Richardson stayed behind to attend the funeral for Bruce Rognon, a Pinehurst resident and longtime Panthers PSL owner. While walking to his car from the Panthers game the previous Sunday, Rognon suffered a heart attack and died. “If Mr. Rognon can come to our games every week, I can go pay our respects to Mr. Rognon,” Morrison recalls Richardson saying.

6. Dec. 24 — Last home game of season. After scoring a touchdown, quarterback Cam Newton handed a young boy the ball. “Here was the picture of the year,” Morrison said. “The boy is down the steps, leaning down to get the ball. Dad is two steps up. The kid gets the ball, turns and jumps into dad’s arms. They capture it on the video board and it was just a wonderful thing about the father-son relationships and one of those very special moments.”

A deep respect for Richardson was evident throughout Morrison’s delivery. Morrison also frequently showed his pride in the Panthers organization and the surrounding area. In one example, Morrison said the Panthers are home to the best fans in the NFL because they’re respectful and loud, two qualities that he said aren’t mutually exclusive.

Morrison also praised the work of the local Jaycees, saying civic organizations play an important role in the community, especially during the recent tough economic times.

Tuesday's seminar was part of the Jaycees' ongoing initiative to provide its members with opportunities in leadership training, team building, developing friendships, networking and community service

Read more: http://www.gastongazette.com/articles/belmont-73654-president-shares.html#ixzz21etwZR2M

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