Chief Executive Officer
Eric Higgs is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee (BGCMT). He joined the Boys & Girls Clubs movement in the height of the pandemic in June 2020 accepting what he describes as a ‘calling’ to do the work. As CEO, Eric leads the organizational vision towards DUB100BY2026 which is to double the youth served to 10,000 by 2026; and ensure 100% of Club members are ready for their great future by focusing on the 5 Ready’s – Ready to Read, Ready for Class, Ready to Graduate, Ready for a Career, and Ready to serve the Community.
Prior to BGCMT, Eric spent 26 years in corporate America, most recently with Bridgestone where he served as Vice President of Commercial Marketing, President of the Commercial Truck Division and SVP of Enterprise Marketing Operations. He also worked at Kimberly Clark where he led the North America Kleenex business. Eric began his corporate career at Procter & Gamble, spending 18 years starting as a Chemical Engineer and then, after completing his MBA, moved to Marketing.
Eric has a BS in Chemical Engineering from University of Illinois @ Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA from DUKE University – Fuqua School of Business. Eric and his wife, Jennifer, have 3 sons and call the West End area of Nashville home, where they have lived since 2016. A consistent belief of his is “the universe cooperates with a made up mind,” which is a phrase that one of his mentors, the late Martha White Warren, consistently reinforced.
Chief Operating Officer
LaQuinta McGhee is the Chief Operating Officer for Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee. She is a seasoned Club professional, with more than 25-years in the Movement, and a Club kid who knows first-hand the benefits and impact Boys & Girls Clubs have on youth. LaQuinta leads the charge in overseeing all Club strategic partnerships like our school districts and program associates, like our Notes for Notes music studios which bring state of the art music education and enrichment to our youth. A native of Knoxville, Tennessee, LaQuinta also served in the Knoxville Boys & Girls Clubs; that’s where her Club journey began as a Club member. LaQuinta has a major in business from Strayer University. In her spare time, LaQuinta visits family in Knoxville or hosts them in Middle Tennessee. She enjoys traveling, with dreams of visiting Paris, France. You’ll also find her trying all the new restaurants in Nashville as well as taking advantage of any bargain sale that benefits our Clubs.
To contact LaQuinta please e-mail her: firstname.lastname@example.org
Chief Development Officer
Jennifer Wheeler Buhrman joined Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee (BGCMT) as chief development officer in 2016. To this key role, she brings with her more than fifteen years of experience in fund development, donor relations, event planning, communication strategy and organizational leadership. She oversees the resource development team and efforts, as well as community and government relations. Since coming onboard, BGCMT’s total revenue has grown more than 45%.
Prior to joining BGCMT, she served in development and corporate client roles with top organizations, such as Renewal House, the Nashville Humane Association, Frist Museum, and Ski West, Inc.
A native to East Nashville, Jennifer lived in Coral Gables, FL, Park City, UT and Bangkok, Thailand, prior to returning “home” in 2005. Since, she has dedicated her strengths and passion to making a difference in the Middle Tennessee community. In 2016, she was recognized by the Center for Nonprofit Management and The Tennessean as one of Middle Tennessee’s “30 in their 30’s,” an honor for excelling nonprofit leaders. In 2020, she was announced as one of four finalists in the nonprofit category of the Nashville Emerging Leader Awards, the Nashville Chamber of Commerce’s initiative for recognizing the significant accomplishments of young professionals in their chosen career field, as well as their commitment and contribution to the community.*
Jennifer holds a MEd Nonprofit Leadership from Belmont University, an executive certificate in transformational nonprofit leadership from the University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business, as well as a Certificate of Accomplishment from University of Indiana Lilly School of Philanthropy. She was a founding and graduate student of East Literature Magnet, a part of Metro Nashville Public Schools.
In her spare time, Jennifer lends her support to AWAKE (Advocates for Women and Kids Equality), serving as the Board Chair of their 501(c)(4) Amplify AWAKE, and enjoys time with her husband, Steven Buhrman, their daughter, Lyla, and their two rescued dogs: Eleanor and Alister.
To contact Jennifer, please email her at email@example.com or call 615-983-6804.
*Winners will be announced on August 5, 2021; fingers-crossed!
Donor Engagement Manager
Director of Resource Development Williamson County
Denise Carothers joined the Boys & Girls Club movement in 1996 as a Girl Scout troop leader for the Franklin Unit. After three years of volunteer service in 1999, she began working professionally with the Club. Denise currently serves as Director of Resource Development for Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee, where she oversees fundraising and community relations for all Williamson County Boys & Girls Clubs including grant proposal preparation, strategic planning, and special events. Annual events Denise oversees such as Wine Down Main Street and the Steak & Burger Dinner have become staples for the Williamson County community. She has worked professionally with Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee for over 22 years and continues to make a significant impact on the Williamson County community and the youth served in the Clubs.
A native of Franklin, Denise holds a B.S. in Speech Communication & Theatre from Tennessee State University and a M.Ed. in Instructional Leadership from Lipscomb University. She is a graduate of the 2007 Leadership Franklin Class and was the first African American President of the Franklin Rotary Club at Breakfast. Denise devotes time to a variety of local causes serving as Rotary International District 6760 Rotaract Club Coordinator, Rotarian with the Franklin Rotary Club at Breakfast, member of Friends of Franklin Parks Inclusive Playground Planning Committee, Board Chair of the grassroots, non-profit Hard Bargain Association, Community Service Day Chair for Youth Leadership Franklin, Mt, Hope Baptist Church Secretary/Treasurer and is an appointed member of the Williamson County Public Library Board of Trustees.
To contact Denise, please e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 615-628-8188.
Madson Club Director + Interim Chadwell Club Director
Phone: (615) 968-0251
Jeff Darnell is a Nashville native that began his work with the Metro Denver Boys & Girls Club Movement in 1993 as an Athletic Director. He has served as the Director of three Middle Tennessee Clubs during his first tenure with the Movement. He also served as a National Training Associate for Boys & Girls Clubs of America for five years teaching the Money Matters and Career Launch national programs.
When asked why he chooses to be a part of our Club members’ Great Futures…
“Because I realize the significance of making an impact on young peoples’ lives.”
Valor Club Director
Nicholas graduated from the University of Redlands in 2013 and has been working with youth ever since. Since moving to Tennessee, he has worked with kids grades K-12 coaching sports, running physical education programs, teaching computer coding, and even starting videogame leagues across the United States.
To contact Nicholas: email email@example.com or call (408) 368-8756.
Cleveland Park Club Director
Education Director, Cleveland Park
Glengarry Club Director
Bri'Anca Jordan, born and raised in Nashville, TN, her career started with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tenseness in 2014. She started off as a YDA and worked her way up to begin as Club director in 2017. Her favorite area of the Club is the Gym and The All-purpose room. She loves those areas because it allows her to use her creativity and come up with on the spot’s activities.
When asked why she choose to be a part of our Club members’ Great Futures……"I choose to be apart our Club member’s Great futures because I was a Club kid and I love helping others out making a difference in their lives."
Director of Human Resources
Executive Admin. Assistant
Andrew Jackson Club Director
Sharon Mapp-Humphrey was born in Knoxville, Tennessee and graduated from Austin East High School in 1975. She graduated from Barbizon Fashion Institution in Atlanta, Georgia and worked in the fashion industry for almost two decades as store buyer and later as a small business owner.
Eventually, Sharon realized her true calling, working with kids, at which time she started working at the Boys & Girls Club of America (BGCA) in Knoxville, Tennessee as an Art Director, Program Director, and eventually the Unit Director. She initially started-up the Moses Teen Center as the Education Director and went on to become the Career Preparation Director.
A few years later she became the Program Director at James T. Anderson in Marietta, a major BGCA in Atlanta, Georgia. A year later, Sharon became the Executive Director. Her hard work and dedication resulted in James T. Anderson becoming the premier showcase BGCA in Atlanta, making a positive influence in the lives of children and the community.
During her time in Atlanta, Sharon completed BGCA Advanced Leadership Development Program, Management Tracking I & II, National Trainer Associate Certification which resulted in her achieving the Distinguished Level of Boys & Girls Club of America Academy.
After approximately ten years in Atlanta, Sharon was presented with the opportunity to become Director of Operations at A.G. Gaston BGCA in Birmingham, AL. In the later part of the fourth year, Sharon resigned her position to care for her terminally ill Father in Nashville, Tennessee.
After the passing of her Father, she worked in various administrative jobs. Eventually, the opportunity came for her to return to her true calling, and she is now the Andrew Jackson Club Director.
Club Director, Franklin
Club Director - Valor Club
Director of Operations
Herbert ‘Herb’ Myers is a Nashville native and is so proud to live and work in his hometown. Herb received his bachelors in Aerospace Administration from MTSU, and is currently enrolled in their Masters of Educational Leadership degree program. Herb is a veteran of the U.S. Navy where he served for four years. He has been with Boys & Girls Clubs as a Club Professional for eight years
To contact Herb, please e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 615-983-6842
Program Director, Eagle View
Chadwell Club Director
Fairview Club Director
Phone: (615) 799-1880
Fax: (615) 799-1838
Tamara Peay is a Fairview, Tennessee native, who joined the Boys & Girls Club Movement in December of 2006 as the Unit Director of the then new Fairview Clubhouse. Employed for ten years with First American Bank as an Item Capture Specialist, she changed professions to be an Operations Manager/Account Executive working with major airfreight companies before finding her passion working with youth in Middle Tennessee.
When asked why she chooses to be a part of our Club members’ Great Futures…
“I enjoy implementing opportunities for Club members to choose a healthy lifestyle by playing sports, making healthy food choices, (which sometimes includes Italian food for me), and the benefits of creating healthy relationship with friends and family.”
Education Director, Preston Taylor
Director of Virtual and Blended Learning for Club NEXT
Melissa Smith joined Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee in 2016 and began her time in the movement in 2014. After working in various youth-serving programs, she fell in love with the movement and the genuine pursuit of its mission to impact youth. After working in various Clubs as a YDA, support staff, and Club Director, she now leads the Digital initiative as the Director of Virtual & Blended Learning. In this role she has crafted an entirely online experience as well as an in-person Coding/Design experience for youth in and new to the organization. Both pilot programs have been received with excitement!
She originally called Chattanooga home but has come to truly call Nashville home. She studied performing arts in high school and holds a BA in music (piano performance) from Tennessee Wesleyan University. Melissa uses these creative skills to grow the virtual and tech efforts of the organization. She is always quick to come up with a fun game with the youth, join dance parties, and start up a jam session when musical instruments are nearby.
In her spare time, Melissa enjoys doing things with her daughter and boyfriend, three dogs, and cat. She is an avid reader, music enthusiast, amateur photographer, and is always looking to learn more.
To contact Melissa, please email her at email@example.com or call (615)498-4883.
Franklin Interim Club Director
Shwab Club Director
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