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'Mr. Cornell'

  Alumni Profile  

Paul Kenmore Scott ’29, or “Mr. Cornell” as he was called, dedicated most of his life to working for or promoting his alma mater. As an All-Conference quarterback at Cornell, he led the 1927 team to the Midwest Conference championship.

After graduation, he became a schoolteacher and coach while continuing his education at Columbia University. Scott started his coaching career at Culver-Stockton College but in 1941 he returned to Cornell to coach track and wrestling.

Six years later his wrestlers made history by winning the NCAA and NAAU national championships—a feat never repeated by a college or university of any size. From 1941 to 1950 his wrestlers posted a record of 56-8-1, won six conference crowns, and claimed five NCAA individual titles. He also coached wrestlers that participated in three Olympics.

But Scott’s commitment to Cornell ran deeper. He served as head coach in cross country, assistant coach in football, admissions counselor, and director of athletics and physical education. He left Cornell in 1950 to become athletic director at Davidson College. In 1954, he returned as alumni director, a post from which he retired in 1976. During his time at Cornell Scott traveled widely with presidents and senior administrators and organized more than 70 alumni clubs. He received several awards from the National Association of College and University Alumni Directors for his distinguished service.

Scott was named a charter member of the Cornell Sports Hall of Fame in 1971, named to the Iowa Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1982, and inducted as a distinguished member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1992. He is also a member of the Glen Brand Wrestling Hall of Fame, an honorary member of Delta Phi Rho, and an honorary Kentucky Colonel. His son, Richard K. Scott ’63, serves on the Alumni Board of Directors and the Sesquicentennial Committee.

In retirement Scott remained a trusted advisor to the Cornell administration and received Cornell’s most distinguished award, an honorary doctorate, in 1998. Scott died Aug. 22, 2003, at age 97. The family has directed memorial contributions to the Paul K. Scott Scholarship Fund at Cornell.

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