Here’s a little school and work bio for those of you just getting to know me!
I was born in Fort Worth, TX in 1978 where my parents were attending Southwestern Baptist Seminary. Shortly after, we moved to Alabama, where both of my parents grew up. I attended a kindergarten program at Highland Baptist Church in Florence, AL. In the summer of 1985, we moved to Goodlettsville, TN, just walking distance from Moss Wright Park. That fall, I began 1st grade at Beech Elementary, and that begins my journey in Sumner County.
Each of my three younger siblings and myself completed grade school in the Beech school system. We split our time living in homes in Hendersonville and Goodlettsville, and were all active in extracurricular activities, everything from sports to show choir to theatre to FCA to honor society. I graduated from Beech High School with honors in 1996, and I couldn’t imagine having gone to school anywhere else!
My first degree in higher education was earned in 2005 from Volunteer State Community College and is in Mass Communication. I was the Marketing Director for The Settler, the student run newspaper and a writer. It is also where I met one of my mentors, Len Assante, who was my professor and advisor. (He, too, is a current candidate for Sumner County Commissioner in District 6! He represents parts of Hendersonville and Gallatin.) From there, I entered the work force working for a direct mail marketing firm in Hendersonville, TN. In 2008, I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Corporate Communication from Western Kentucky University. That degree landed me a job in the marketing department at Shoney’s corporate office. I was still restless, so I decided to get my Master’s Degree, also in Corporate Communication. I attended Austin Peay State University online and received my M.A. in 2011.
In 2011, I also got married, helped form an amazing non-profit, the Alliance for Recreational Empowerment, and started a career in the special event industry in Nashville. For the next 6 years, I worked in corporate sales and event production for one of the largest event draping companies in the nation, Quest Events, and one the most unique specialty rental companies in middle TN, Visual Elements. I served on the board of TWESA (TN Wedding and Event Specialists Association) and was a member of Meeting Planners International, Nashville Chamber of Commerce, Studio Wed, and the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation. When I left, I had a regional territory of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alabama. I thoroughly enjoyed the world of events and gained an unbelievable skill set that includes budgeting, problem-solving, leadership, time management, goal setting, and relationship building. Simultaneously for two years while working in events, I also taught as an adjunct professor of Communication at VSCC. I loved teaching but had to choose, and at the time events won out. Don’t be surprised if you see me travel that route again, though!
In March of 2017, I was six months pregnant with my second child, and my husband and I felt my (soon to be) two young children would benefit greatly if I were able to spend more time at home with them. We made some adjustments, and I decided to change career paths. In 2015, I began my health and fitness journey, and I found a passion for helping others start theirs. I am now a certified nutrition coach and teach simple lifestyle changes that lead to health, happiness, and fulfillment. I am able to coach online, teach others to workout at home, and rock the most important job of all, motherhood . Win-win, right?!
This is definitely the cliff notes of my life and is basically a summary of my school and work history. I just thought I would share for those of you wondering who I am and why I love Sumner County. I now reside in Portland, TN with my husband, Ronnie, my 4-year old daughter, Lylah Jane, and 1-year old son, Cooper Jennings. I am an active member of the Portland Chamber of Commerce and the Portland Friends of the Library. We live next door to my in-laws, and soon, my brother-in-law and his family will be joining us. Collectively, we have 8 acres, 28 chickens, 4 dogs, 4-wheelers, and a golf cart. This year we’ll be doing some gardening of fruits and vegetables as well, and I can promise you one thing, you can always feel the love and hear the laughter in Harbin Hollow.