Leadership Tennessee NEXT announces new members for upcoming program

Leadership Tennessee announced its fifth class for the Leadership Tennessee NEXT program on Wednesday.

The program is geared towards early and mid-career professionals and provides personal and professional development. The next class will welcome 30 rising professionals representing the diversity of the regions and industries across Tennessee.

Program participants will meet four times a year for in-person sessions and have the opportunity to connect with state leaders to discuss important issues affecting the state.

"We continue to find that Tennessee's leaders of tomorrow are eager to learn and passionate about bridging the state's Grand Divisions," said Cathy Cate, President of Leadership Tennessee in a statement. "Through Leadership Tennessee NEXT, we hope to build a cross-generational network of leaders that will support a long term vision for state growth and collaboration."

The program is now in its ninth year and includes a network of nearly 450 members. Leadership Tennessee was founded as an initiative of Lipscomb University's College of Leadership and Public Service.

More information about Leadership Tennessee is available here.

Leadership Tennessee NEXT Class V members

  • Cassandra Alvarado, Director of Career and Technical Education, Lakeway

  • Christian Schools (Morristown)

  • Andrea Bennett-Punke, Government Relations Associate, McMahan, Winstead &

  • Richardson (Nashville)

  • Michelle Black, Community Relations Manager, Northeast Tennessee Regional Economic Partnership (Johnson City)

  • Calvin Dunning, VP, Fair Lending & CRA, FirstBank (Nashville)

  • Whitney Flatt, Senior Management Consultant, Office of Customer Focused Government, State of Tennessee (Nashville)

  • Rebecca Galfano, Press Secretary, United States House of Representatives, Office of Congressman Mark Green (Franklin)

  • Diarese George, Executive Director, Tennnessee Educators of Color Alliance (Clarksville)

  • Whitney Goetz, Executive Director, Alumni Association, East Tennessee State University (Johnson City)

  • Bekah Grace, VP of Marketing, YMCA of East Tennessee (Knoxville)

  • Latasha Harris, Anchor Programs Director, Memphis Medical District Collaborative (Memphis)

  • Kathleen Hawkins, President/CEO, Hendersonville Area Chamber of Commerce (Hendersonville)

  • Andrea Jacobo, Visiting Instructor/ Public Health Director, Rhodes College (Memphis)

  • Haley Johnson, Assistant Principal, Sevier County Board of Education (Sevierville)

  • Karitsa Jones, Administrator, Department of Early Learning, City of Chattanooga

  • Spencer Klein, Project Manager - Advanced Nuclear Technology, Tennessee Valley Authority (Chattanooga)

  • Dr. Sarah Lane, Principal, Hamilton County Schools (Chattanooga)

  • Carlin McGlown, Assistant Principal, Tipton County Schools (Brighton)

  • Tiffani Mensch, Chief Capacity Building Officer, United Way of Greater Knoxville (Knoxville)

  • Grant Minchew, Legislative Liaison, State of Tennessee, Office of the Governor (Nashville)

  • Kristen Pavlik McCallie, Executive Director, Children's Advocacy Center of Hamilton County (Chattanooga)

  • Laci Payne, Principal Chemical Engineer, Eastman Chemical Company (Kingsport)

  • Jen Prudhome Booker, Senior Manager, Site Experience & Digital Products, AutoZone Inc. (Memphis)

  • Tiffany Sanders-Jones, Chief Operating Officer & Co-Founder, Redeveloping Academics through Individual Needs, (R.A.I.N.) (Memphis)

  • George Tolbert II, Principal Consultant, The P.O.U.R.S. Network (Mt. Juliet)

  • Jess Vodden, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, East Tennessee State University (Johnson City)

  • Rebecca Warren, Partner, FINN Partners (Brentwood)

  • Jessica Whatley, CEO, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Chattanooga (Chattanooga)

  • Bridget Winstead, Senior Program Manager, Office of Government & Community Affairs, Vanderbilt Health (Nashville)

  • Mason Worthington, Director - Tennessee Rural Entrepreneurship, Pathway Lending (Nashville)

  • Andrew Zito, Vice President, Chattanooga Lookouts (Chattanooga)

Maria Clark is a general assignment reporter with The American South. Story ideas, tips, questions? Email her at mclark@gannett.com or follow her on Twitter @MariaPClark1. Sign up for The American South newsletter. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Leadership Tennessee NEXT announces new members for upcoming program