About the Author

Tom Parham, a lifelong North Carolinian, retired from a career of teaching and coaching in 2004.  As a college tennis coach, Parham amassed a record of 597 wins and 195 losses and has been inducted into ten athletic halls of fame. His teams won three National Championships and he was selected National Tennis Coach of the Year four times.

A Professor Emeritus at Elon, Parham was awarded the Elon Medallion, the University’s highest honor, in 2004.  He served as an Athletic Director at Atlantic Christian College and as Associate Athletic Director at Elon University. Parham received the Order of the Long Leaf Pine in 1979. He resides with his wife Margaret in Emerald Isle, NC.

21 thoughts on “About the Author

  1. Mikael Houlst

    This is great! A book from one of the people that I admire most, and has had a great impact on me personally. Best wishes from Stockholm, Sweden.

  2. Jim Powell

    My wife and I have enjoyed this book greatly. Our kids have been beneficiaries of Tom Parham’s great summer camps. We feel that this book contains great advice for our kids and for us adults also from someone who not only has been there but who is a great raconteur.

  3. Chad

    Can’t wait to get my copy coach! Not only a great coach in tennis, but a coach in the most important game of all, life…. Thanks for everything. -“Jimmy”

  4. Frank and Pamela Haith

    Coach Parham,
    We are so excited about your book and can’t wait to get a copy so that we can continue to grow from the wisdom in which we benefited from while attending Elon College. The many nuggets that you sowed into our lives as a professor, mentor and supervisor indeed had a tremendous impact on our lives personally and professionally. Best wishes to you and Mrs. Parham, thanks for everything that you did for Pam and I, and God Bless.


    wonderful stories of small town North Carolina—I can relate — just wish we could play some tennis! Hope you enjoy ‘life at the edge’ —your friend, mike c.


    Thomas Dylan Parm—ok,now i’ve read the entire book—enjoyable read and also an insight as to what makes Parm tick. One is the sum of his boyhood experiences,upbringing, cifering right from wrong,ego, etc—all in all, you did good. BTW, ‘down east suits you better that the ‘piedmont’. c-ya soon, mike c.

  7. Al Viglione

    The book is wonderful, insightful, and easy to read. Wonderful because a daily small event for Tom was and is the reason to get up in the morning. Insightful to not only Tom viewing the world and people but also of people seeing him. It was an easy read, but he knows people that go by in a flash as though you were to know them for years and you feel at the end that you have. Great job Tom, you are right, could go to jail together, Al

  8. Ava

    You have been a great instructor in showing me the basics of tennis. Those skills will stick with me throughout life. You talents have inspired many others and will inspire many more in the future!



  10. Lynn McIver

    Tommy, Congradulations on another honor! Although I haven’t seen you since Atlantic Christian student days, I’ve read about you your accomplishments from time to time, and I still hope to run into you someday to talk about the old days. Tommy, I’m sorry none of these articles mention your basketball skills, as well. There were some great games when you, Fritz, Boyd, Harris, Fillingame and Askew played together. I realize there were others, but you guys are the ones I remember the most. Best wishes to you and your family.
    Lynn McIver

  11. L Karageanes

    Hello Coach,
    Great to see you and T Morris at the NC Weekend! Thanks for the book I look forward to reading your story. Hope to stay in touch and a golf day with T Morris!


  12. Lane Evans

    I enjoyed our recent time together at the coast coach. That is time I will treasure forever. Watching you describe tennis strategies and teaching your “lessons” while using the cracks of the sidewalk as court lines is what it is all about. People walking by thought you were a kook but I knew exactly what you were saying and how valuable the information was. Thanks for the “lessons” . Lane

  13. Hi Uncle Tom. I really enjoyed your book even though I don’t know a lot about tennis. I can’t wait to see you and aunt Marg again and maybe next time it will be in Emerald Isle?

  14. Paula Patteson

    Coach, I just wanted to tell you that your recent clinics at Ole Porte Raquet Club accomplished my goal. The many tips and suggestions that you gave to us have made a difference and my play has definitely moved up a level!!!! Look forward to more! Say hello to Margaret. It was a pleasure to meet her and her help on the court was appreciated.

  15. Pete, It’s about that time again! Let the stories begin again on February 15th in Emerald Isle! Can’t wait to catch up with you and the guys and I hope Tee and Dan and “The Young Guns” are able to make it this year. All the best, friend and I’ll see you soon! Allen

  16. Tom
    I had the pleasure of being a plane seat mate with your amazing wife Margaret today. I often tell people I married above myself. Maybe you do too.
    Tennis has been a big part of my life. It is great
    Hope your book has done well.
    Ron Reece

  17. Bob Thelen

    I didn’t know Tom Parham but did know Jim Verdieck, one of the tennis coaches Mr. Parham wrote about in his book. (I googled Coach Verdieck’s name and found this page.) Coach Verdieck was the U. of Redlands tennis coach during the years I attended Redlands (1963-68). I played freshman, JV and varsity tennis while there. I learned an incredible wealth of tennis playing and coaching knowledge from Coach. He gave me the instructional tools I needed to teach tennis both in private and clinical settings. I also was fortunate to be able to know his sons, daughter and wife while at Redlands. I didn’t know until reading the excerpt from Mr. Parham’s book that Coach Verdieck was inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame. But I am not surprised–he was truly one of the greats in the world of collegiate tennis!

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