When Leadership Blount County was formed in 1990, community leadership programming in America was a relatively new concept. Unlike corporate management training, the idea of training nearly 40 individuals about every aspect of the community in order to build involvement was untried in Blount County.
With more than 1,000 graduates, Leadership Blount’s alumni are a recognized body of dedicated leaders who are committed to the welfare of Blount County, the organization said in a news release.
Just as these alumni experienced, this year’s class will hear from different presenters, visit different sites, forge different relationships and affect our community in different ways, LB said.
“Our core Leadership Blount program remains as vital as ever to engage and educate local leaders. Communities are ever changing and as time passes, Leadership Blount remains committed to our core values of promoting lifelong learning and service, inclusion and diversity, and to foster relationships, partnerships and collaborations,” board Chair Virginia Hardwick said.
The following comprise LB’s 30th class:
Company/Organization: Cherokee Milwright
Title/Position: Project manager
Education: Maryville High School; Carson Newman College; Sandler Sales Program; Amcor Leadership Program
Community/Professional affiliations: member, Blount Community Church; coaching, Maryville Little League; Second Harvest; United Way of Blount County; Susan B. Komen Events; Special Olympics powerlifting; Blount Chamber Work Force Development Committee.
Company/organization: United Way of Blount County
Title/position: Community resource coordinator
Hometown: Hendersonville, North Carolina
Education: Hendersonville High School; BA Sociology, Wake Forest University; The National Center for Paralegal Training; M. Ed Curriculum and Instruction, Lincoln Memorial University
Community/professional affiliations: Connect.Lead.Serve. Club; Trauma Informed Community Advisory Board; Domestic Violence Task Force; Community Health Initiative; Rotary; Autism Speaks; St. Jude’s Heroes; Be Aware Blount; Blount County Homebrewers; Tennessee Winter Beer Fest; Wake Forest University Student Union; National Honor Society; Girl Scouts; Young Life; First Farragut UMC; Foothill Striders.
Company/organization: Core Benefits & Investments LLC
Title/position: financial planner director
Hometown: Albemarle, North Carolina
Education: Albemarle Senior High; BS in Economics, Auburn University; certified financial planner; Dealing with Dementia trainer, Rosalyn Carter Institute
Community/professional affiliations: Dementia care trainer at Blount Memorial; certified trainer for the Rosalyn Carter Institute; Named one of top three financial advisers in Knoxville’s Best of the Best.
Company/organization: Maryville/Alcoa-Blount County Parks & Recreation
Title/position: director of MLK Jr. Community Center
Education: Alcoa High School; Knoxville College; certified educational interpreter; recreation specialist
Community/professional affiliations: H.O.M.E INC; St. Johns Baptist Church — Alcoa; Alcoa Kiwanis; coached several sports at TSD in Knoxville; First Horizon Advisory Board — Knoxville; volunteered with Special Olympics; Hall-Oldfield Homecoming Committee; MLK Jr. Celebration Committee; volunteer with deaf community.
Company/organization: Tennessee Marble
Title/position: business and relationship cultivator
Education: Knox Central High School; Pellissippi State Community College; East Tennessee State University
Community/professional affiliations: Downtown Maryville Association board; Construction Specifications Institute board; American Institute of Architects, supporting member; Monroe County Chamber of Commerce, past chairman of board; Wine in Grocery Stores Campaign; Mike Faulk for Senate Campaign; Blount Partnership.
Company/organization: Clayton Homes
Title/position: credit manager
Hometown: Miami, Florida and Maryville
Education: UTK, Master of Business Administration; King University, Bachelor of Business Administration; Pellissippi State College, Associate of Arts; Barbara Goleman Senior High in Miami
Community/professional affiliations: mission trip to Honduras with Forgotten Children Ministry; MCS Diversity Taskforce; Meals on Wheels; First Baptist Alcoa — Awana Sparks 1st grade leader; Everette Hill backyard VBS; Haven House; current Junior Service League member; United Way Connect Lead Serve Mmmber; Both Hands; New Hope Children’s Advocacy Center, board, Governance Committee member and Internal Committee member; Junior Achievement Kindergarten at Alcoa Elementary; First Baptist Alcoa VBS leader; One Love Community Church; Picture Day coordinator at SHE; First Baptist Alcoa greeter; Cub Scouts Pack 85 co-leader; First Baptist Alcoa Ladies Ministry; John Sevier Elementary, volunteer reader; Blount County Education Foundation; United Way loaned executive; First Baptist Alcoa nursery volunteer; John Sevier PTO board secretary; Coulter Grove Intermediate PTC board member; United Way Gas Day volunteer.
Company/organization: city of Alcoa
Title/position: systems manager
Education: Westmoreland High School; Middle Tennessee State University, Bachelor of Business Administration
Community/professional affiliations: deacon, Friendship Baptist Church; United Way Golf Committee co-chair; United Way cabinet member.
Company/organization: Danny Davis Electrical Contractors Inc.
Title/position: secretary/treasurer, director of workforce development and safety
Education: Maryville High School; Pellissippi State, business management; University of Tennessee; electrician’s apprentice; BICSI certified copper installer; master electrician licenses and certifications in Kentucky, Tennessee and South Carolina; general contractors licenses in Tennessee and South Carolina; NCCER master trainer and certified craft instructor; Georgia Tech, OSHA Training Institute authorized outreach instructor (OSHA 500)
Community/professional affiliations: Broadway Baptist Church deacon and church committees; Blount Partnership Construction Advisory Committee, member and chair; Blount chamber’s past board of directors; board member/officer of Danny Davis Electrical Contractors.
Company/organization: Allevia Technology
Title/position: marketing trailblazer
Hometown: Dallas, Georgia
Education: South Paulding High School; University of North Georgia, Bachelor of Science in Art Marketing; Blackbaud Altru (CRM); training courses with Alliance for Better Nonprofits
Community/professional affiliations: Rio Central Church; Blount Partnership; Discover Blount; United Way of Blount County; Family Promise of Blount County; Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont; Keep Blount Beautiful; Maryville Downtown Association; Blount County Community Action Agency; Kingdom Design Ministries; Alliance for Better Nonprofits; TnAchieves; Sky City Entrepreneur Center; Loudon Chamber of Commerce; Blount County Chamber of Commerce ambassador.
Company/organization: LeConte Realty
Education: William Blount High School; University of Tennessee; Tennessee real estate license
Community/professional affiliations: Eagle Scouts, Boy Scouts of America; volunteer and staff, Young Life; United Way of Blount County; Tennessee Baptist Children’s Home; Alabama Baptist Children’s Home; Victory Health Partners.
Company/organization: Boys and Girls Club of Blount County
Title/Position: facility/program director
Education: Maryville High School; Maryville College, Bachelor of Arts, psychology; Lincoln Memorial University, Master of Education, mental health counseling
Community/professional affiliations: St. Peter Primitive Baptist Church and choir member; Blount County Foster Parent Association; Richard Williams Jr. Leadership Development Academy; TN Achieves mentor; Maryville High School PTSO.
Company/organization: Blount County Sheriff’s Office
Title/position: IT manager
Education: Heritage High School; Maryville College, B.A. in Computer Science; Blount County Sheriff’s Office Regional Law Enforcement Training Academy
Community/professional affiliations: chairman of deacons; Piney Grove Baptist Church, member and volunteer director of media; Blount County Government Information Technology Committee; member of Blount Partnership Information Technology Workforce Advisory Committee; member of Fraternal Order of Police Bud Allison Memorial Lodge #9.
Company/organization: Haven Media
Hometown: Louisville, Tennessee
Education: K.E.M. Homeschooling, Grove, OK; business and marketing online courses and seminars; videography, photography and media-based marketing trade education
Community/professional affiliations: Skiers Choice; Blount County Chamber; Knoxville Addy Awards.
Company/organization: Blount Memorial Hospital
Title/position: director, client relations
Education: Everett and Walland High School; Draughron’s Business College; Pellissippi State, business administration; certified professional coder and reimbursement medical compliance
Community/professional affiliations: Family Promise board/officer positions; Family Promise Finance Team Committee and Personnel Committee chair; Sunday school classes; church mission projects; mentoring opportunities; Downtown Maryville Association.
Company/organization: Helen Ross McNabb Center
Title/position: assistant director of development and legislative affairs
Education: Karns High School; University of Tennessee, B.S. Human Ecology
Community/professional affiliations: DCS In-Home TN Implementation Team; East Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth; Summer on Broadway Committee; Cocke County Community Advisory Board; Smoky Mountain Family Matters, Community Advisory Board; Cocke County Health Council
Company/organization: Alcoa Fire Department
Title/position: deputy chief
Education: Heritage High School; Roane State Community College-AEMT; Columbia Southern University-AAS Fire Science; Tennessee Fire and Codes Academy, firefighter, fire investigator, and fire officer certification curriculum; National Fire Academy, leadership classes; Alabama Fire College, fire inspector
Community/professional affiliations: Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church; Empty Pantry Fund; Blount County Area 15 Special Olympics; United Way of Blount County; Blount County Habitat for Humanity; Maryville/Alcoa Parks and Rec; Tennessee Fire Chief’s Association; Center for Public Safety Excellence (CPSE); TN International Association of Arson Investigators, board member Training and Education/Legislative Committee; Tennessee Fire Safety Inspector’s Association; American Red Cross; Boy Scouts of America.
Company/organization: Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church
Education: Notre Dame High School, Chattanooga; Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., BA International Relations; University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary, Mundelein, Illinois, MDiv; courses in French, Spanish and some Italian
Community/professional affiliations: pastor of the following East Tennessee Parishes: St. Augustine, Signal Mountain; St. Joseph the Worker, Madisonville; St. Therese of Lisieux, Cleveland; St. Mary’s, Johnson City and Our Lady of Fatima, Alcoa; president, Leadership Circle of URI (United Religions Initiative) of Northeast Tennessee; Blount County Ecumenical Action Committee (BCEAC); Family Promise of Johnson City, board; Mountain Home VA CPE advisory board; dean for Southeast Region of Knoxville.
Company/organization: Blount County Habitat for Humanity
Title/position: construction supervisor
Education: Dupont High School, Hermitage, Tennessee; BS in Animal Science, UTK; BS in Education, UTK School of Experience
Community/professional affiliations: Young Life; MCS school board; First Methodist Church mission trips; Sunrise BNI.
Title/position: senior vice president
Education: South Doyle High School; Principals of Banking at Roane State Community College; Tennessee Bankers Association classes; Wachovia’s Consumer Lending School in South Carolina, Management Skills and Sales Training
Community/professional affiliations: United Way of Blount County Volunteer for 20 years as a worker, board member, board chair, campaign chair, various divisions chair; Blount County Food Drive; Habitat Business Build; Habitat Women’s Build; Blount Partnership board member and a past membership drive “God Muddah;” Blount County Children’s Home; Blount County Food Pantry; Second Harvest; Brick Build for the Library; Bible school director at church; Tennessee Achieves Mentor; Habitat financial assistant for homeowners; School Scholarships program at CBBC.
Company/organization: McGhee Tyson ANGB
Title/position: command chief master sergeant
Hometown: Parrottsville, Tennessee
Education: Bachelor of Business Administration, Carson Newman University; aircraft and powerplant license; small commercial/residential license
Community/professional affiliations: First Baptist Church in Dandridge as a college and career Sunday school teacher and co-leader of the young adult men’s bible study; board of directors at East Tennessee Military Association Federal Credit Union; member and former president of the 134th Air Refueling Wings Chief Council; mentor for the Wings Top III Enlisted Council; lifetime member of Enlisted Association of the National Guard of Tennessee professional organization.
Company/organization: Blount County Schools
Title/position: assistant director
Education: South-Doyle High School; Pellissippi State Community College; University of Tennessee, Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education; University of Tennessee, Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction; Lincoln Memorial University, Education Specialist
Community/professional affiliations: chairman of the deacons at East Maryville Baptist Church; National Association of Secondary School Principals; Tennessee Association of Secondary School Principals; Team Leader for YOKE Youth Ministries; Young Life; Middle School basketball and volleyball
Company/organization: Renasant Bank
Title/position: commercial lender
Education: Greeneville High School; Maryville College; Middle Tennessee State University, MBA
Community/professional affiliations: Alcoa youth sports; New Providence Presbyterian Church; Haven House; United Way CLS group
Company/organization: Maryville College
Title/position: vice president and dean
Hometown: Beckley, West Virginia
Education: Woodrow Wilson High School, Beckley, West Virginia; BA History, Harvard University; MA History, University of Chicago; PhD History, University of Chicago
Community/professional affiliations: Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association, Executive Leadership Institute; Council of Chief Academic Officer, Appalachian College Association; American Historical Association; Southeastern World History Association; American Society for Environmental History.
Company/organization: Family Promise
Title/Position: executive director
Education: Seymour High School; University of Tennessee Knoxville
Community/professional affiliations: vice president of the Alcoa Intermediate PTO; Church Street United Methodist Sunday school teacher; chair of United Methodist Women’s Circle; board of Family Promise of Blount County; board of Secret Safe Place of Tennessee; participated in the telethon for Friends of the Smokies.
Company/organization: Re/max First
Hometown: Durban, South Africa
Education: Impington Village College, Cambridge; Port Shepstone High School, South Africa; bachelor’s at the University of South Africa; ongoing training as a Realtor, South Africa and Maryville
Community/professional affiliations: Toastmasters youth leadership coordinator; KZN Women in Business member.
Company/organization: The GATE
Title/position: executive director
Hometown: Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Education: Hempfield High School; Millersville University with a BA in psychology; University of Dayton with a M.S. Ed. in human Services
Community/professional affiliations: Gate-Gateway to Independence; United Cerebral Palsy of Washington D.C., and Northern Virginia; ResCare residential services; Life’s WORC
Company/organization: Epic Nine Marketing
Title/position: web designer
Education: Maryville High School; University of Tennessee Knoxville, B.F.A. graphic design
Community/professional affiliations: Downtown Maryville Association Design Committee
Title/position: branch sales manager
Education: Knoxville Catholic High School
Community/professional affiliations: United Way of Blount County, campaign coordinator; CANpaign; Gas Day & Allocations Committee; Second United Methodist Church, food pantry volunteer; CAC Mobile Meals, delivery volunteer; Second Harvest of East Tennessee; Volunteer Ministry Center, volunteer; Blount Habitat, board member and volunteer; Blount Habitat ReStore, volunteer; Knox Habitat, Women Build Committee; Anderson Habitat, volunteer; West High School Foundation, board member; West High School PTSO, secretary; Bearden Middle School Foundation, secretary; Bearden Middle School PTSO Enrichment coordinator; Bearden Elementary School PTSO- President, Vice President; Pond Gap Elementary School, volunteer reader; KFC Crush soccer manager; KUSA Liberty soccer manager; Tennessee Valley Fair, board member; Tennessee Valley Fair Foundation, board member; Boy Scouts of America, Golf Committee.
Company/organization: Maryville College
Title/position: executive director for strategic initiatives
Education: TNTP, elementary school teaching certification; George Washington University, Master of Arts in American Studies; teaching English as a foreign language, Next Level Institute; Carson Newman College, Bachelor of Arts in English
Community/professional affiliations: choir member and Justice Knox participant, St. James Episcopal Church, Knoxville; member, STEM Workforce Committee at Blount Partnership; board member, Downtown Maryville Association; Scholarship Committee, Youth Court; member, National Association of Colleges and Employers; Tennessee Association of Colleges and Employers, former regional representative; former vice president, Sky City Entrepreneurship Center; former involvement on the Economic Vitality Committee, Downtown Maryville Association; Carson-Newman College Alumni Honors Weekend, former volunteer; former certified tourism ambassador
Company/organization: Blount Partnership
Title/position: director of tourism
Education: William Blount High School; University of Tennessee Knoxville
Community/professional affiliations: Middle TN Tourism Council, chair; Hospitality TN executive board; State Tourism Rural Initiatives Committee; TN Whiskey Trail manager; Maryville Downtown Association; Townsend Cades Cove Gateway Alliance board member; Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation; Helen Ross McNabb Center.
Company/organization: Shimmer Hair Spa
Title/position: hair stylist and salon owner
Education: Woodstock Union High School, Vermont; Vermont College of Cosmetology
Community/professional affiliations: executive director for Officer Moats Foundation; volunteer lead hair and make-up artist for Primary Players nonprofit children’s theater; regional educator for I.C.O.N hair care products; Alliance for Better Nonprofits; East TN Professional Beauty Association.
Company/organization: SERVPRO of Blount County
Education: Bachelor of Business Administration from Campbell University; certified faith and finances counselor; licensed aesthetician in Tennessee; certified in water damage restoration by IICRC; numerous online business webinars and training
Community/professional affiliations: Blount Chamber ambassador program; United Way Blount County champion; community partner with Family Promise of Blount County; designed and facilitated finance classes at A Hand Up for Women; single mother mentor at The Restoration House; Fundraising Committee at Hope Resource Center; president of Neighborhood Homeowner’s Association.
Company/organization: Blount County Emergency Communications District, E911
Title/position: supervisor/training manager
Education: William Blount High School; National Emergency Number Association (NENA) center manager certification; Association of Public Safety Officials (APCO,) public safety, emergency medical and fire instructor; American Heart Association instructor; notary public
Community/professional affiliations: youth leader/treasure of youth fund account; VBS director; full-time pianist in church; Alternate Terminal Agency coordinator (liaison to FBI/TBI); American Heart Association CPR/first aid Instructor; Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) instructor; Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA), team member; Telecommunicator Emergency Response Team (TERT) leader; youth baseball coach/team mom.
Company/organization: DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee, Inc.
Title/position: director, production control and logistics/corporate planning
Education: BA Maryville College, organizational management and accounting
Community/professional affiliations: Sunday school teacher; baseball coach; basketball coach; United Way BC Pillar Society; business advisory board, Maryville College Business Department; Partnership Advisory Council, Maryville College.
Company/organization: Blount County Schools
Education: William Blount High School; Maryville College, BA in Mathematics; Lincoln Memorial University, MS in Curriculum and Instruction and Ed.S in Leadership and Administration
Community/professional affiliations: principal and founder of the Samuel Everett School of Innovation; assistant principal and athletic director of William Blount High School; mathematics instructional coach for Loudon County Schools; head football coach, William Blount High School; head wrestling and football coach, Greenback High School; Blount County School Board Athletic Committee member; founder and coach/administrator of the Renegade Wrestling Club; director of the Blount United Soccer Club Academy; manager of competitive teams at Blount United Soccer Club.
Company/organization: District Attorney General Office 5th Judicial District
Title/Position: assistant district attorney
Hometown: Clinton, Tennessee
Education: Clinton High School; Middle Tennessee State University; Stetson University College of Law
Community/professional affiliations: New Hope Children’s Advocacy Center.
Company/organization: Maryville College
Title/position: associate professor of art/design; chair, Division of Fine Arts; coordinator of sustainability studies
Education: B.A. in Communication and Art, Buena Vista University; M.F.A. in Multimedia Design, University of Minnesota; professional rtificate in campus sustainability leadership, University of Vermont
Community/professional affiliations: past president and board member of Keep Blount Beautiful; past board member of Little River Watershed Association; past board member of Mane Support; designer and campaign team member for Susan Sneed for TN State House, District 20; professional certificate in campus sustainability leadership; juried work selected for the Arts in the Airport show by the Arts & Culture Alliance and Metro Knoxville Airport Authority; member of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (and past board member and sustainability chair for the AIGA Knoxville Chapter; graphic designer for more than 30 organizations and groups.
Company/organization: Little Arrow
Title/position: CEO, co-founder
Education: Jackson High School, Jackson Missouri; Metro Business College; Southeast Missouri State University; outdoor hospitality management certification
Community/professional affiliations: board, Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center; board, Townsend Cades Cove Gateway Alliance; several festival committees in Townsend.
Title/position: principal and business development director
Education: Central High School, Knoxville; Christopher Newport University, BS in Accounting; Certified Public Accountant (CPA); Tennessee School of Therapeutic Massage; Tennessee Licensed Massage Therapist; board certified in therapeutic massage and bodywork (BCTMB)
Community/professional affiliations: Heal the Healers community initiative to frontline COVID-19 health care workers; Chair-ity and Good Cause to Relax (GC2R) partnership programs with area nonprofits; adviser and guest professor to Roane State Community College massage therapy program; volunteer, Southeast Region Community Service Massage Team Response Division (AMTA-NC); mission trips to Tijuana Christian Mission; mission to help Jamaica Deaf Village Retreat Center; active member in Blount Partnership; participant in Downtown Maryville Business Association Holiday Market; member of American Massage Therapy Association.
Company/organization: Alcoa City Schools
Title/position: director of special education and pre-K
Education: Alcoa High School; Maryville College, Bachelor of Arts; University of the Cumberlands, Master of Arts in Teaching; Lincoln Memorial University, Educational Specialist
Community/professional affiliations: Alcoa First United Methodist Church; Alcoa Athletic Boosters; board, The Gate; board, Alcoa Youth Sports; Blount County Parks and Recreation, Friends of Parks and Recreation board