Posted by Philip Poole on 2010-05-05

The family featured in the award-winning movie, “The Blind Side,” will speak at a July 13 fundraising event in Samford University’s Pete Hanna Center sponsored by a local foundation. 

The 7 p.m. event, hosted by Samford, will benefit the First and Five Foundation and its community partners, which include Kings Ranch, Restoration Academy, the A. G. Gaston Boys and Girls Club, First Priority, TEAM FOCUS, Fit for Life and Lifeline Children Services.

Tickets are $45, and all tickets are general admission. Tickets are available online through the Pete Hanna Center website,, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Pete Hanna Center box office, or by telephone at (205) 726-4343.

Leigh Anne and Sean Tuohy, their daughter Collins and son S.J. will speak at the event, along with Baltimore Ravens start Michael Oher, who moved into the Tuohy’s home at age 16 after a tumultuous childhood. Oher went on to play football at the University of Mississippi and was on the Ole Miss team that hosted the Samford Bulldogs during the 2008 season. Oher was a first-round draft pick of the Ravens in 2009 and an All-Rookie performer in his first season in the National Football League.

Oher’s inspiring story originally was told in a best-selling book by author Michael Lewis and became a record-setting movie in 2009. The movie was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture, and Sandra Bullock won the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Leigh Anne Tuohy.

Reggie Torbor’s First and Five Foundation was founded in 2008 by the former Auburn football player and current Miami Dolphins linebacker, along with his wife Michelle.  Through its mentoring and tutoring programs, the foundation seeks to encourage youth to embrace “Reggie’s 3R’s: respect yourself and others, recognize your opportunities and be responsible.  The foundation is also active in providing grants and scholarships to students and community organizations. 

“It’s exciting for Samford to host an event featuring the people who inspired this internationally-known story,” said Sean Wright, Hanna Center manager. “We are pleased to partner with the First and Five Foundation to make this opportunity available to the community.”

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 66th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 104th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,683 students from 47 states and 19 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 3rd nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.