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Morris Greene

Boys & Girls Clubs in Tennessee        2010 Hall of Fame Inductee

Morris Greene

Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland • Cleveland, Tennessee

     The Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland started as The Boys Club of Cleveland in 1964, when Morris Greene, a founder and past president of the club agreed to meet with Warren G. Brown, Regional Service Director from Boys & Girls Clubs of America. Recently, the Board of Directors along with Mayor Tom Rowland honored Greene’s contribution to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland with a   memorial plaque placed in the lobby of the club. Morris was interested in starting a club in Cleveland and commissioned several influential citizens to back the idea. Morris recognized the need for a place for boys who didn’t have a place to go such as a club, the younger ones especially, and take a lot of them off the street. There was a definite need for the club that would provide a place with a “wholesome atmosphere” in which the boys could be made into men.

    Morris served on the Board of Directors of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland for 27 years from 1964 – 1991. Morris held the office of Board President and  Secretary for a combined seven years. On February 28, 2004, Morris Greene helped celebrated the 40th Anniversary of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland and the Grand Re-Opening of the James H. Tucker Unit. On that same day Mayor Tom Rowland honored Morris by establishing “Morris Greene Day” in the city of Cleveland. Morris was the founding father of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland and served a 2 terms as President. Morris also served and the clubs secretary for many years and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland historian. Morris was an      integral part in securing the resource to operate the club in its infancy and begin a capital campaign for the now James H. Tucker Unit. Morris also paved the way for BGCC to become an agent of the then United Fund of Bradley County. Morris wrote of the great partnership the developed and how the United Fund helped with both Capital projects and provided operational funds.

     Morris was involved with the Boy Scouts, serving as a troop chair and a safety chair for the Cherokee Council. He served on the Cleveland YMCA board of directors.  His community has benefited greatly from Greene’s desire to be a service to the community. Most people remember him as the first director of the Bradley County Civil Defense Squad. However, Greene’s involvement in the community greatly surpassed his directorship.

     He realized how important emergency services were to the community. Greene helped organize and direct the civil defense. He also was an organizer and chairman of the Bradley County Emergency Medical Services. He was a volunteer fireman for the city of Cleveland. Greene was also a vice president for the U.S. Civil Defense Council. He was president of the Tennessee Civil Defense Council.  If there was a way to help the community, Greene was  involved. His accomplishments are very impressive. He was a charter member and president of the Multi-County Car Theft committee. He organized the public service unit of the Cleveland Police Department. Greene also was a founder of Hearts United and of the Cleveland Amateur Radio Club.  His other community activities included serving as an officer, on the board or as a member of the Cleveland Jaycees, Optimist Club, Sertoma Club, Cleveland-Bradley  Community Chest, Cleveland-Bradley March of Dimes, Cleveland Country Club, Service Corps of Retired Executives and Retired Senior Volunteer Program.

      Morris Greene’s love of community was matched only by his love of his state and country. A Navy veteran of World War II, he joined the U.S. Army National Guard, which was activated during the Korean conflict. He served with the Tennessee National Guard for 28 years. He also served with the U.S. Army Reserves and retired after 39 years in military service. He helped organize the 402nd Military Police Battalion of the Tennessee Defense Force in   Cleveland. He reached the rank of brigadier general in the TDF, which is now known as the Tennessee State Guard.  He was a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and a 50-plus member of the American Legion. In 1998, Greene was given Bradley County’s Patriotism Award. The awards Greene received for his involvement in the community are numerous. Cleveland and Bradley County were very fortunate to have had Greene as such a caring    and active member of the community.