2010 ACC Women's Basketball Legends: Donna Forester-Reed, Clemson

Feb. 18, 2010

The Atlantic Coast Conference celebrates its sixth annual class of ACC Women's Basketball Legends during the 2010 ACC Women's Basketball Tournament, March 4-7, at the Greensboro (N.C.) Coliseum. The honorees will be recognized during the ACC Legends Luncheon, as well as on the court at halftime of the first semifinal game on Saturday, March 6.

The ACC Women's Basketball Legends program honors past players from each of the ACC's 12 schools who have contributed to the league's rich tradition. Included in the class are 12 former student-athletes that represent four decades of ACC Women's Basketball competitors.

TheACC.com will feature three members of the 2010 ACC Legends Class each week (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays) during the final four weeks of the regular season.

Q&A with Donna Forester-Reed

Q: What was the most memorable game for you while playing at Clemson?
A: My most memorable game was probably against our rival South Carolina. We were down by almost 20 points at half time and came back to beat them by a fairly good margin. South Carolina was our biggest rival back then. The ACC was just getting started so we had not had time to develop any big rivalries.

Q: What Clemson tradition is your favorite?
A: My favorite moments at Clemson were the times we ran out on the court before every game to “Tiger Rags.” That always got us really pumped up for the game….a great tradition!

Q: Before you began your two-year career at Clemson, you led Anderson College to a pair of junior college national championships in 1975 and 1976? What attributes from your time at Anderson College helped you immediately become a leader at Clemson?
A: Obviously when your team is successful you are always a target for other teams. They seem to play harder and you are always under fire. Having been put in many tight pressure situations gave me valuable experiences that prepared me to become a more effective leader on and off the court.

Q: You were the first Clemson player to be named to an All-ACC team, describe that accomplishment?
A: It was and still is quite an honor. I consider myself very fortunate to have been given the talent to excel on the basketball court. I am especially thankful to Coach Tribble and my fellow teammates who helped me become successful. I would never have been able to do it without them.

Q: What does being named an ACC Women’s Basketball Legend mean to you? A: I am honored and humbled! Basketball was a huge part of my life for many years and helped mold me into the person I am today. I am very excited to become a part of an elite group of players.

Q: How well does the ACC prepare student-athletes for life after their playing days – whether in business or in their professional basketball careers?
A: The ACC plays a tremendous role in the lives of student-athletes. Though playing the game is certainly an emphasis, the coaches and administration place academics in the forefront. Being the best you can be on the court is not possible without being the best you can be in the classroom. Sportsmanship and integrity are also stressed and this is evident in the players and coaches you see on and off the court.

Q: You have been in the education field for more than 30 years now, what message is most important for our younger generation to hear from today’s college student-athletes?
A: Always give 100% whether in the classroom or in the game! Learn from your mistakes and from every experience. Stay true to yourself and always maintain your integrity!

Q: What do you think the ACC audience should know?
A: I am proud to have been a part of Clemson basketball and the ACC. I am honored that I continue to be recognized 32 years after my playing career ended. The ACC does a fantastic job with recognition which is so important to people! Thank you ACC for the privilege of being a part of you! I will forever be grateful.

More about Donna Forester-Reed…

Donna (Forester) Reed (1976-78) - Despite playing for the Tigers for just two seasons, Donna Forester finished her career in Clemson’s 1,000-500 club, scoring 1,270 points and pulling down 766 rebounds – both school records at the time of her graduation.  While her 1,270 career points and 766 career rebounds currently rank 12th and sixth, respectively, at Clemson, her 12.2 career rebounding average remains a Tiger record.  Forester also stands eighth in school history in made field goals (535) and fourth in free-throw percentage (76.9).  She tied school single-game records in 1977 when, as a junior, she pulled down 25 caroms in a 79-45 win over Columbia College and shot 100 percent from the floor by going 12-of-12 in a 95-51 win over Claflin the following season. 

The first Tiger in program history to earn All-ACC accolades, Forester was selected to the all-conference team in 1978 and earned 1978 All-ACC Tournament team honors. Clemson posted its first two 20-win seasons during Forester’s two years in the Orange and Purple.  Before attending Clemson, Forester led Anderson College to a pair of junior college national championships in 1975 and 1976. 

Upon graduating with a Bachelor’s in Education in 1978, Forester earned a Master’s degree in Personnel Services in 1981 and a Specialist’s degree in Administration and Supervision in 1994.  Forester is a 31-year veteran in the education field, currently serving as the assistant superintendent for the Bank County School System in Homer, Ga.  She and her husband Steve reside in Martin, Ga., and have two children, Matthew and Caroline, a granddaughter, Hannah, and another grandchild expected in March.