Awards for Regional Thinking & Action

Success in Cumberland Region Tomorrow’s, and our region’s, shared objectives requires extraordinary collaborative efforts.   The critical role of personal and professional leadership to Regionalism and Quality Growth and Sustainable Development is known, but sometimes not noted.

Cumberland Region Tomorrow works to recognize and reward successful examples of Quality Growth Across our Region.  Through our Annual Awards for Regional Thinking and Action, we recognize key private and public sector leaders that have made incredible contributions to advancing our region.

2011 Awards in Regional Thinking & Action

This year Cumberland Region Tomorrow awarded two additional important regional leaders from the public and non-profit sector. Both have been essential players in shaping our region and along with the key regional groups and all of their members that they lead are making an incredible difference in Middle Tennessee today.

Jo Ann Graves Elected Unanimously by her Peer Mayors in 2009 as Inaugural Chair of Middle Tennessee Mayors Caucus. Mayor Graves and her fellow City and County Mayor Peers have organized effective action on our region’s first key issue of Transportation/Transit, identified other key issues of regional importance, and are organizing to focus attention to collaborative action that will advance our region. Mayor Graves is a key member of the Nashville Area MPO Executive Board and serves as the current Chair of the RTA Board of Directors. She has been a leader among Middle Tennessee Mayors in creation, adoption and implementation of the Gallatin On The Move Comprehensive Land Use Plan and the Gallatin Downtown Plan, both models across Tennessee.

Susan Taylor First Executive Director of Leadership Middle Tennessee, our region’s premier leadership program, along with the LMT Board, Susan has successfully graduated 300+ Alumni that hold important regional and local leadership roles. Executive Director Taylor, along with LMT Board and Alumni have created a vast regional leadership network of leaders that are key to our region’s communication, collaboration and action leading to our collective success. She is loved across the region and in her home community of Rutherford County, her contributions are appreciated far and wide.

2010 Awards in Regional Thinking & Action

At the 2010 Summit, CRT was proud to give two great regional leaders the 2010 CRT Awards for Regional Thinking and Action.  One for the public sector and one private sector.

The Honorable Karl Dean, Mayor of Nashville/Davidson County was recognized for his tremendous contribution to Regionalism as our 2010 public sector recipient.   At the 2009 Regional Summit, he called for the formation of the Middle Tennessee Mayors Caucus and the Transit Alliance of Middle Tennessee, which are providing important organizational capacity in focused effort in regional transit system development.  Mayor Dean is also providing critical leadership to our top regional issues ofTransportation/Transit,  Open Space Conservation and Economic Competitiveness by Chairing or sponsoring the Nashville Area MPO, the Davidson County Open Space Plan and the Nashville Chamber Partnership 2010 initiative.

Sam Hatcher,  Cumberland Region Tomorrow Regional Communication Chair was recognized for his tremendous contribution toRegionalism as our 2010 private sector recipient.  Sam Hatcher is a recognized regional newspaper Owner and Editor who supportsRegionalism throughout our ten counties in both print and related media.  Upon joining the CRT Board of Directors in 2008, he took the lead as Chair of the CRT Regional Communications Committee and organized a team of leaders and professionals that created and launched our region’s POWER OF TEN brand.  Sam Hatcher also serves on the Regional Summit Coordination Team, the CRT Executive Committee,  and is a key leader in our Public/Private Partnership with the Nashville MPO and other key organizations.

2009 Awards for Regional Thinking & Action

“The winners of these first ever Awards for Regional Thinking and Action were well deserving.  This photo shows the satisfaction of the day as well as the strength of the leaders who have brought our region to this important point”  Ed Cole, TDOT

At the 2009 Summit, CRT was proud to give three great regional leaders the first every 2009 CRT Awards for Regional Thinking and Action.

DeWitt Ezell for his leadership in creating effective regional organizations and his role as Founding Co-Chair of Cumberland Region Tomorrow that is advancing regional thinking and action.



Steve Turner for his leadership in advancing socially conscious development, making community investments in regional arts and music and his role in creating development that models CRT Quality Growth Principles.



Jack Turner for his leadership in creating a regional leadership capacity and his role as Chairman of Leadership Middle Tennessee that is helping our region advance effective regional collaboration and communication quickly and effectively thorough the 250+ regional leaders that are alumni of LMT.





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