Tim Cook honored with Auburn ‘Captains of Industry Award,’ attends Auburn vs Alabama football game

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Apple CEO Tim Cook paid a visit to Alabama this weekend to attend the college football matchup between his alma mater Auburn University and the University of Alabama. While in town, Cook was also presented with the “Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers Captains of Industry Award” from Auburn University’s Samuel Ginn College of Engineering.

As a refresher, Cook graduated from Auburn University with a degree in industrial engineering before attending Duke University for his MBA. Cook regularly pays visits to both Duke and Auburn for sporting events and other gatherings.

This award from the Auburn University’s Samuel Ginn College of Engineering is the “institute’s highest honor.” It was first announced that Cook would receive this award back in the spring, and this weekend he was presented with it prior to the Auburn vs Alabama game. In a post on LinkedIn, the school wrote:

Welcome back Tim Cook, ‘82 industrial engineering and Apple CEO. We’re honored to present Mr. Cook with the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers (IISE) Captains of Industry Award, the institute’s highest honor that is bestowed solely on business, industry and government leaders. Cook was nominated for the award by Alice Smith, an IISE Fellow and the Joe W. Forehand/Accenture Distinguished Professor of industrial and systems engineering. Annie Dorsey, Auburn IISE chapter president, interviewed Cook during the institute’s annual conference in the spring when he was announced as this year’s recipient. Smith and Dorsey presented Cook with his award prior to the Iron Bowl.

Also while in Auburn, Cook made an appearance on the Friday episode of The Paul Finebaum Show on ESPN. In the interview, the Apple CEO revealed that he visited with the Auburn football team on Friday, where he delivered a short speech:

“I told them that tomorrow is a rare opportunity to create a memory that lasts a lifetime,” Cook said. “And that there’s no better memory or longer-lasting memory than those that hit you when you do something that you’re not supposed to do. We’re not supposed to win tomorrow, but we can win tomorrow. I tried to leave them with that spirit and the fact I think the team in Crimson is not the major foe. The major foe for all of life’s greatest challenges is the person staring back at you in the mirror, and you have to recognize that. And sort of that little voice in your head that tells you that you’re doing 100% when you’re doing 90, and you have to eradicate it somehow.”

At the Auburn vs Alabama football game itself, Cook was named as the game’s “honorary captain.” The only thing that could have made this weekend better for Cook would have been if Auburn was actually able to beat Alabama.

Thanks, Logan!

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