Governor Bill Haslam and Western Governors University have named Karen Ward to the advisory board of WGU Tennessee, an accredited, nonprofit, online university aimed at expanding access to higher education for Tennesseans.
Ms. Ward is senior vice president and chief human resources officer for BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. She is responsible for properties and corporate services as well as human resources functions across all lines of business for the company, which employs 5,400 workers across the state.
Additionally, Kimberly K. Estep, Ph.D., has been named WGU Tennessee’s chancellor. Estep joins the university after serving as vice president for academic affairs and student services at Nashville State Community College. A graduate of Auburn University, she has more than 25 years’ experience in higher education as both a professor and an administrator. She will be based in WGU Tennessee’s main office in Nashville but will work with higher-education, community, and business leaders throughout the state to increase awareness and establish partnerships.
Other members of the advisory board, which is tasked with providing strategic counsel and guidance to WGU Tennessee, are:
· John Ingram (chairman), chairman and CEO, Ingram Industries, Nashville
· Jerry Askew, Senior VP, Government Relations, Tennova, Knoxville
· Shannon A. Brown, senior vice president/chief human resources and diversity officer, FedEx Express, Memphis
· David A. Golden, senior vice president, chief legal officer, and Corporate Secretary, Eastman, Kingsport
· Thom Mason, director, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge
· Jim McIntyre, superintendent, Knoxville County Schools, Knoxville
· Ralph Schulz, president and CEO, Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, Nashville
· John Steele, senior VP, Human Resources, HCA, Nashville Shannon Brown, senior vice president/chief human resources and diversity officer, FedEx Express, Memphis
· Blair Taylor, president, Memphis Tomorrow, Memphis