Governor Names Karen Ward To WGU Tennessee Advisory Board

Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Karen Ward
Karen Ward

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

Kimberly Estep
Kimberly Estep

Financial Lunch And Learn Held At GPS

Four local experts in the field of financial and estate planning were on the panel for “Empowering Women for their Financial Future,” a no-cost lunch and learn program for GPS alumnae and parents at the Chattanooga Golf & Country Club. The opportunity was provided for the broader GPS constituency to hear advice and learn financial and estate planning tips that will benefit them, ... (click for more)

GPS Students Receive Field Trip Inspiration

One summer reading book for GPS ninth graders is the NY Times bestseller Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier. The story is of a young woman who is imagined to be the inspiration behind Vermeer’s most famous painting that has the same name as the book title.  Ms. Chevalier’s historical portrait of the girl is fiction, but springs from her study of and appreciation ... (click for more)

Grill Fire Causes Damage To Signal Mountain Home

A grill fire caused damage to a Signal Mountain home on Friday evening. At  7:23 pm , a 911 call was made reporting a house fire at 306 Dawn Street on Signal Mountain. The Signal Mountain Fire Department responded reported heavy fire coming from the back porch and eaves of the home. Signal Mountain FD requested a mutual aid response for additional manpower. The ... (click for more)

Civic, Political Leader Mai Bell Hurley Dies At 87

Civic and political leader Mai Bell Hurley has died at age 87. She was the first woman to serve on the Chattanooga City Council. Ms. Hurley was also a longtime advocate for the arts and a leader in United Way. She was a leader in Chattanooga Venture that led to the redevelopment of downtown and the riverfront.  She most recently served on the Library Board. ... (click for more)

Senator Corker: Americans Deserve To Know Where Their Elected Leaders Stand On The Iran Deal

As I traveled across the Volunteer State during August, I spoke with many Tennesseans about the nuclear agreement between Iran, the United States, and other world powers. While opinions of the agreement vary, there is perhaps no greater geopolitical issue facing the world today than preventing a nuclear-armed Iran.  A strong agreement that would stop Iran from obtaining ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: We Ain’t A Whirlygust

I have lived in and around the State of Tennessee my entire life and I have spent that last 50 years writing words in stories every day. I love clever words, words that fit perfectly in a sentence. I also like funny words, clever phrases and all sorts of “slang” words. This week the Slate website came out with “The United Slang of America” and, naturally, I was eager to see what ... (click for more)