Dr. Charles W. LaPradd Ph.D. Endowed Fellowship
The spendable income of the Fund will be used to support a graduate Ph.D. fellowship for a student in the College of Health and Human Performance who is a U.S. citizen or other individual entitled to legally reside in the U.S., with a preference to students to complete their doctoral degree.
Dr. Charles W. LaPradd has been a local hero for almost 50 years. Known as one of “the bluest bloods in the history of UF Orange and Blue,” he is celebrated as one of the greatest football players in UF history and one of the most dedicated alumni in university history. In the late 1940s, LaPradd hitchhiked to Gainesville but was deterred when floodwaters forced his bus to stop and turn back. He had recently returned from service in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper and was ready to complete his education. LaPradd was determined to try out for the UF football team. Before he joined the team, the Gators had never been invited to a bowl game and had only one other All-American player. As team captain, LaPradd led the Gators to an 8-3 record and brought them to the Gator Bowl. He received All-SEC first team and Consensus All-America football honors. LaPradd graduated from UF in 1953 with a degree in physical education. He then signed a contract with the Green Bay Packers but broke both his knees in a car accident, which prevented him from playing professional football. He earned his master’s degree in secondary school administration and his doctoral degree in higher education administration from Florida State University. LaPradd served as the dean of men at FSU for two years and worked as a coach for the FSU Seminoles football team for four seasons. From 1965-72, he served as the president of St. Johns River Community College. In 1972, he established a beer distributorship which still bears his name. LaPradd has served as president of Gator Boosters and is an inductee of the UF Hall of Fame, the UF Athletic Hall of Fame and the Florida-Georgia Hall of Fame. LaPradd established this endowed fund to enable students to complete their doctoral degree.