Haslam Announces Resignation Of Labor And Workforce Development Commissioner

Monday, March 18, 2013

Governor Bill Haslam on Monday announced that Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Karla Davis is resigning due to family reasons.

“Over the past two years, the department has implemented several key initiatives including a comprehensive online jobs database to better connect job seekers to Tennessee employers and is playing a vital role in our effort to update Tennessee’s worker’s compensation laws,” Gov. Haslam said.  “I am grateful to Karla for her service and wish her the best.”  

Ms. Davis has served as commissioner since the beginning of the Haslam administration. Prior to that, she served as director of Urban Strategies Memphis HOPE, managing and overseeing the Community and Supportive Services Program for three U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) HOPE VI public housing redevelopment projects and two HUD ROSS Grant projects in Memphis. Before that she worked at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for 16 years.

The governor has named Burns Phillips as acting commissioner. Mr. Phillips currently serves as managing director in the Department of Finance and Administration (F&A) overseeing customer-focused government initiatives administration wide.

“Burns brings both public and private sector experience to this interim role,” Gov. Haslam said.  “I appreciate his willingness to take on these responsibilities as we continue to focus on serving the citizens of Tennessee.

Early in his career, Mr. Phillips worked in the Budget Office of F&A before going into the private sector where he worked in medical sales and marketing. In 1991, he founded a surgical instrument company that conducted business in the United States and 30 other countries.

In 2009, he returned to state government to serve as transportation administrative director of the Tennessee Department of Transportation’s Central Services Division.

Mr. Phillips has both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Middle Tennessee State University, and he earned his law degree from the Nashville School of Law. 


Alexander Opposes Administration’s “Crippling” New $2,250 Fee On Tennessee Gunsmiths

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander this week joined a group of 24 Republican senators in fighting the Obama administration’s new plan to force the nation’s gun hobbyists and gunsmiths to pay a $2,250 fee and register as manufacturers.  “No Tennessean should have to pay $2,250 to the U.S. government because he or she simply enjoys working on antique firearms for a hobby,” Senator ... (click for more)

Megabus Announces Permanent Stop In Chattanooga Starting Wednesday

Megabus will be at their permanent stop in Chattanooga starting Wednesday. The new location is 2020 E. 23rd St., near Fourth Ave and I-24 and the first bus will be off to Chicago at 8:20 a.m.  Immediately megabus.com will be offering routes to Atlanta, Nashville, Louisville, Indianapolis and Chicago with additional routes to Knoxville, Christiansburg and Washington D.C. ... (click for more)

City Councilman Larry Grohn To Run For Mayor Of Chattanooga

City Councilman Larry Grohn said Tuesday he plans to make a race for mayor of Chattanooga. Mr. Grohn, who will be giving up his District 4 seat on the council, said he has been "extremely frustrated" with the administration of Mayor Andy Berke. It is not yet known whether Mayor Berke, the former state senator, will seek a second term. City Councilman Ken Smith from District ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Short Term Vacation Rental Operators Praise System; Freeman Says Council Has To Get Some Rogue Operators Under Control

A host of Chattanooga residents who make extra income and meet new friends by renting out their homes told City Council members on Tuesday that short term vacation rentals are part of the new way of living. Commission Chairman Moses Freeman said those who came to the public hearing do it right, but he said a new ordinance is necessary because some who are not responsible "cause ... (click for more)

Colin Kaepernick Is The Epitome Of American Patriotism

As the mother, mother-in-law, sister, aunt, and former wife of present active duty and veterans several times over, it isn't the patriotism of NFL player Colin Kaepernick I question, but the patriotism of those who are attacking him. Kaepernick is the epitome of all things this country is suppose to stand for and challenge. If he's attacked for taking a stand then everything this ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: How Tenure Destroys Kids

When the California Supreme Court announced last week that it would not hear a landmark case (Vergara v. California) you didn’t hear much about it, but when Hamilton County employs almost 30 percent of teachers that are deemed to be “the least effective” by any measure, it’s time for somebody outside our classrooms to start paying very close attention. I was amazed that last ... (click for more)