31 local leaders graduate from yearlong MTSU-affil...

31 local leaders graduate from yearlong MTSU-affiliated program

Thirty-one community and business leaders made up this year’s round of graduates from Leadership Middle Tennessee, program officials announced.

The 2012 Leadership Middle Tennessee class includes representatives of 10 counties, who participated in 10 one-and-a-half-day sessions focusing on a variety of regional issues and information presentations while visiting each of the member counties.

A regional board comprising LMT alumni and business and community leaders oversees leadership Middle Tennessee.

The program operates through the Jennings A. Jones College of Business at MTSU, and Susan Turner Taylor serves as executive director.

Participating counties include Cheatham, Davidson, Dickson, Maury, Montgomery, Robertson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson and Wilson counties.

“The Leadership Middle Tennessee program educates existing leaders to the importance of having a regional perspective,” said Jack Turner, chair of the group’s Board of Directors who helped found Leadership Middle Tennessee.

“Leadership Middle Tennessee brings community, business and government leaders together to work on a variety of regional issues. I am very proud of this year’s class; they will be instrumental in expanding the aspect of regionalism.”

Graduates of the 2012 Leadership Middle Tennessee class and their respective counties are:

  • Cheatham County—Cory Ronald Gossett, manager of IS Financials for LifePoint Hospital Inc., and Debbie Martin, owner of Driver Bridge LLC;
  • Davidson County—Mary Beth Ikard, communications director for the Nashville Area Metro Planning Organizations; Hunter Gee, a partner at Smith Gee Studio LLC; Cindy Houston Hazen, CEO of Sales Executives; Drucilla Smith, executive administrator for the Nashville Fire Department; Paula Roberts, executive director of the National Museum of African American Music; and Pete Wooten, director of commercial banking at Avenue Bank;
  • Dickson County—Michael Curcio, owner of the Ace Diner;
  • Maury County—Trent Ogilvie, executive director/CEO for the Columbia Housing and Redevelopment Authority, and Kimberly Willis, owner/president of Columbia Construction Co. Inc.;
  • Montgomery County—Katie Gambill, vice president and general manager for the 5 Star Radio Group; Charlie Koon, chief of staff for the City of Clarksville; and Karen Stanley, executive assistant to the commanding general of the 101st Airborne Division;
  • Robertson County—Kay Bagby, a self-employed volunteer; Scott Bagwell, executive vice president/chief lending officer for Commerce Union Bank; Jordan Osborne, vice president of operations for the Robertson County Chamber of Commerce; and Faye Stubblefield, assistant vice president of The Farmers Bank;
  • Rutherford County—Evan Cope, attorney, Cope Hudson Reed & McCreary; Kathryn Jones, Tennessee Division president of Stewart Title Company; and Mark Lee, president of Site Engineering Consultants Inc.;
  • Sumner County—Matthew Coram, IT and GIS systems manager for the City of Hendersonville, and Thomas Tucker, director of economic development for the City of Goodlettsville;
  • Williamson County—Teresa Burns, director of GAP Community Development Resources; Susan Cowden, director of accountability, budgets and grants for the Tennessee Department of Education; James Crumlin Jr., attorney/member of Bone McAllester Norton PLLC; Charles Ray Eldridge, associate dean of the College of Business at Lipscomb University; and Diane Thorne, chief regional transportation director for The TMA Group;
  • Wilson County—Mike Manous, president and founder of Manous Design; Danny Stewart, co-owner and COO of Advanced Propane Inc.; and Joel Usery, vice president of finance for Lochnivar.

Leadership Middle Tennessee was formed in 1999 as an initiative of Partnership 2000 to contribute to planned and sustainable economic and community growth and development in the fast-growing 10-county area. It works toward that goal with the participation of community leaders in an annual regional leadership program.

At its founding, Marvin Runyon, LMT board chairman, said, “The regional leadership institute was founded to help community leaders develop a unity of purpose and meet regional challenges with regional vision.”

Runyon, who passed away in 2004, was the former president of Nissan Motor Manufacturing USA, chairman of the Tennessee Valley Authority and U.S. Postmaster General.

For more information, visit or contact Taylor at 615-904-8207 or