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CoreCivic CEO among 46 people statewide chosen for Leadership Tennessee program

Leadership Tennessee today announced its 46 Class VII members, including a Brentwood CEO, who will spend the next year engaging in collaborative, non-partisan dialogue on issues of statewide importance.

Damon T. Hininger, President and CEO of CoreCivic, the private operator of correctional facilities nationwide, is the member from Brentwood. CoreCivic has built a new headquarters on Virginia Way in Brentwood.

Leadership Tennessee selects a new class of leaders annually to take part in a statewide study course while visiting different areas of Tennessee, learning best practices and analyzing important issues faced by Tennesseans. As it enters its seventh year, Leadership Tennessee has built a network of 246 leaders across the state.

The new class members represent each Grand Division, cities from Athens to Dyersburg to Memphis to Nashville. See below for the extended list of Class VII members.

“Tennessee has a lot of momentum right now, but Tennesseans continue to face significant challenges that require new and innovative partnerships to overcome them. Each class brings its own unique perspective and insight to the conversation, and we’re excited about Class VII joining the Leadership Tennessee network,” Leadership Tennessee Executive Director Cathy Cate said. “Each class comes together during the course of the year, having difficult conversations that challenge their points of view on issues in their communities, and we’re looking forward to Class VII and developing our seventh cohort around their chosen focus areas.”

In April Leadership Tennessee announced it would lead “Vote Tennessee,” a statewide effort to increase voter registration. More information on Vote Tennessee can be found at And in January Leadership Tennessee announced the first class of Leadership Tennessee NEXT, its program offering early-to-mid career professionals in-depth personal and career development while fostering a better understanding of Tennessee.

The seventh cohort of Leadership Tennessee will meet for the first time in August and includes:

C. Seth Sumner, City Manager, City of Athens

Bethany Flora, President, Northeast State Community College

Damon T. Hininger, President/CEO, CoreCivic

Dr. Kelly Arnold, Founder and Medical Director, Clínica Medicas
Dr. Rebecca Ashford, President, Chattanooga State Community College
Christy Gillenwater, President/CEO, Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce
Dr. Bryan Johnson, Superintendent, Hamilton County Schools
Scott Pierce, EVP & Chief Operating Officer, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee
Marcus K. Shaw, CEO, CO.LAB
Britt Tabor, EVP & CFO/Treasurer, Erlanger Health System

Mayor Chaz Molder, City of Columbia

Kevin Christopher, Principal, Rockridge Venture Law

State Representative Cameron Sexton, Tennessee General Assembly

Chad Davis, Owner, Davis Wealth Services

Ryan Porter, COO & General Counsel, Jackson Chamber of Commerce

Johnson City
Eric Deaton, Senior VP for Market & Hospital Operations, Ballad Health

Lottie Ryans, Director, Workforce & Literacy Initiatives, First Tennessee Development District
Dr. Randy Wykoff, Dean, College of Public Health, East Tennessee State University

Heath Guinn, Founder, Sync Space

Dr. Jerry Askew, President, Alliance for Better Nonprofits
David Brace, Deputy to the Mayor and COO, City of Knoxville
Senator Richard Briggs, Tennessee General Assembly
Claudia Caballero, Executive Director, Centro Hispano
Tyvi Small, Interim Vice Chancellor Diversity and Inclusion, University of Tennessee Knoxville
Avice Evans Reid, Senior Director, Knoxville City Government
Patrick Wilson, President, Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority

Tammy Wilson, Vice President, Treasurer & Chief Risk Officer, TVA

Jason Farmer, Founder/CEO, Black Lens Productions
Mike Keeney, Attorney, Lewis Thomason
Justice Holly Kirby, Tennessee Supreme Court
Commissioner Mickell Lowery, Shelby County Government
Billy Orgel, President, Tower Ventures
Lauren Taylor, Vice President of Programs and Learning, Hyde Family Foundation
Amy Weirich, District Attorney General, 30th Judicial District

Jessica Bliss, Storytelling Columnist, The Tennessean
Michelle Gaskin Brown, Manager, Public Policy, Amazon
Commissioner Beth DeBauche, Ohio Valley Conference
Alfred Degrafinreid II, Associate Vice Chancellor for Community Relations, Vanderbilt University
Margaret Dolan, President/CEO, Launch Tennessee
Bradley Jackson, President/CEO, Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry
Commissioner Julie McPeak, TN Department of Commerce & Insurance
Hugh Queener, Chief Administrative Officer & EVP, Pinnacle Financial Partners, Inc.
Dr. Sharon Roberts, Chief K-12 Impact Officer, TN State Collaborative on Reforming Education
Patrick Sheehan, Director, Tennessee Emergency Management Agency
Stephen Smith, Deputy Director/Chief of Staff, TennCare
Commissioner Marie Williams, TN Department of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services

Leadership Tennessee, an initiative of the College of Leadership and Public Service at Lipscomb University, is an organization committed to collaborative, non-partisan dialogue on issues of statewide importance by crossing geographic and professional boundaries and connecting a diverse network of problem solvers and engaged citizens. A new class of leaders is selected annually to take part in a leadership study course while visiting different areas of Tennessee, learning best practices and analyzing important issues faced by Tennesseans. To date, 246 leaders have gone through the program.


By | 2019-06-19T15:29:47-05:00 June 10th, 2019|Categories: Business, BW-News|Comments Off on CoreCivic CEO among 46 people statewide chosen for Leadership Tennessee program

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