2019 Nonprofit Excellence Conference Speaker Bios


Session Descriptions


Jerry Askew, PhD

Dr. Jerry Askew brings nearly 40 years of nonprofit experience to ABN, having held executive positions in higher education, philanthropy, and healthcare. Since arriving in Knoxville in 1985, Dr. Askew has served as dean of students and associate vice chancellor for development and alumni affairs at the University of Tennessee, president of the East Tennessee Foundation, and senior vice president of the St. Mary’s/Mercy Health Systems. In addition, Dr. Askew has served on the boards of over 40 nonprofit organizations at the local, state, and national levels. He received his BA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, MS from the University of Memphis, and PhD from The Ohio State University. Dr. Askew is also an ordained deacon in the Episcopal Diocese of East Tennessee. 

Heather Cook, PhD

Dr. Heather Cook is a people developer. From Fortune 500 companies to stay-at-home-moms, she helps improve relationships, productivity, and engagement through small, actionable ways that yield big results. Dr. Cook was the executive director for Healthy Kingsport, where she led the city to become one of nine pilot communities selected by Governor Haslam as a Tennessee Healthier Community. Dr. Cook also served on the Kingsport Regional Planning Commission and as the executive director of the foundation at Northeast State Community College.

Dr. Cook received her doctorate in educational leadership and policy analysis with a concentration in post-secondary and private-sector leadership from ETSU. She was the first graduate of the prestigious Roan Scholars Leadership Program. She earned a BBA in marketing and an MBA from ETSU. Dr. Cook is very active in her community. She serves on the Roan Scholar Leadership Program Steering Committee at ETSU and will serve as chair for Roan's 20-year celebration in 2020. She is a member of the Rotary Club of Kingsport, where she serves as a board member and upcoming president for their 100th anniversary.

Walter Crouch, PhD

Since 2011, Dr. Walter Crouch has served as the president/CEO of Appalachia Service Project. Dr. Crouch previously served as vice president of church relations at Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City, TN. He joined Carson-Newman’s religion faculty in 1998, teaching several courses and specializing in Old Testament. He moved to administration as vice president for church relations and director of the Norton Institute for Congregational Health in 2002. Since 2008, he has led the College’s Ministry Guidance Program for those called to full-time Christian service.

Dr. Crouch’s professional experience blends a quarter-century of ministry with hands-on skills learned as a journeyman electrician, as well as a certified general contractor, mortgage broker, and real estate agent. During his educational pursuit and academic career, he has served as either full-time or interim pastor at churches all over the country. He holds a BA from Palm Beach Atlantic University, an MDiv from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a PhD from Baylor University.

Amy Dolinky

Amy Dolinky is the substance misuse response coordinator with the Knox County Health Department. She is currently overseeing the All4Knox initiative to create a county-wide strategic plan to address the substance misuse epidemic. Dolinky is also an independent contractor with Forward Flag, a nonprofit focused on veteran and tribal suicide. Prior to her current role, she was the East Tennessee regional director with the Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network. She is also in the process of completing her master’s degree in public policy and administration at Northwestern University.

Becca Davis

Becca Davis is the co-founder and executive director of ReFrame Association, a national network of home repair nonprofits, and is also the founder of 100+ Tri-Cities Women Who Care, a giving circle. She previously served as the chief ministries officer at Appalachia Service Project and earned her master’s degree in nonprofit management at Eastern University in Pennsylvania. Davis lives in Jonesborough, Tennessee with her husband and two young children.

Danelle Glasscock

Since 2010, Danelle Glasscock has served as the executive director of United Way of Greater Kingsport. A former employee with Eastman Chemical Company, Glasscock worked in both industrial engineering and human resources, serving in business process improvement and business organization consulting roles. As a result of her husband’s expatriate assignment from Eastman Chemical Company, Glasscock and her family lived in the Netherlands before relocating to Columbia, SC. In Columbia, Glasscock served for nearly three years as the director of children’s ministries at Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church. Capitalizing on her strong background in process improvement and business organization, Glasscock became an entrepreneur and motivational speaker. She ran a successful professional organizing company, Simply Organized-Real Help for Real Homes. Glasscock holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Auburn University.

Trudy Hughes

Trudy Hughes is the vice president of regional advancement at the East Tennessee Foundation. She currently serves as a member of the board of directors for the East TN Regional Leadership Association and the TN Community Services Agency. Hughes’s prior board and committee service includes the TN Chapter of Child Advocacy Centers, the TN Commission of Children and Youth, Kingdom Design Ministries, Blount County Chamber of Commerce, Knoxville Opera Ball Committee, Maryville City Schools Foundation, the TN Junior League, the Junior League of Chattanooga, and the Southeast TN Council on Children and Youth. Hughes is a proud alumnus of 2014 East Tennessee Regional Leadership, 2004 Leadership Blount, and 1998 Leadership Chattanooga. In 2006 she received the Blue-Ribbon Prevention Advocate Award from Prevent Child Abuse TN and in 2000 she received the Jim Pryor Advocacy Award from the TN Commission on Children and Youth. Hughes was honored for her diverse community service with the 2012 YWCA Tribute to Women Award as well as via a Senate Joint Resolution in March 2013.

Hughes holds degrees in finance (BS), human services (BA), and community counseling (MEd) from the University of Tennessee. She has served as adjunct faculty with Maryville College, the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga State Technical Community College, and Cleveland State Community College.

Diondre Jackson

Diondre Jackson is the founder and CEO of Penultimate Development, a 10-month residency leadership program targeting at-risk young men between the ages of 18-24. The program goal is to transform followers to leaders focusing on their personal, professional, and spiritual development. He also owns and operates Penult Place, a co-workspace in downtown Jefferson City, TN. From 2005-2017 he served as the CEO of Williams Creek Youth Foundation overseeing The First Tee of Greater Knoxville, Williams Creek Golf Course, and The Wee Course Academic Learning Center. Beneath Jackson's leadership at Williams Creek Youth Foundation, he helped expand The First Tee in Knoxville from 200-20,000 children in Knox, Sevier, Blount, Anderson, and Loudon counties, where created an academic center that impacts over 125 kids within East Knoxville. He also helped Williams Creek Golf Course become one of the best Par 3 golf courses in the country ranked 4th across the state. In 2016, Jackson was the recipient of the MLK Chairs Award for Community Service and graduate of the Consortium for Social Enterprise Effectiveness program at the University of Tennessee. In 2013, he received the Community Service Award from 100 Black Men of Knoxville. In 2011, he was a member of Leadership Knoxville, and in 2008 he was a member of the Greater Knoxville Business Journal’s 40 Under 40. Jackson obtained an MBA from Carson Newman University and a BA from the University of Tennessee in urban studies. He currently serves on two boards, the Mossy Creek Foundation as economic vitally chair, and treasurer for Children Advocacy Centers of Tennessee. He has served as a volunteer Young Life leader and high jump coach with the Knoxville Track Club. Jackson met his wife Adia while in college and they have three children: Delaney, Diondre, and Denver.

Stephen Marshall, PhD

Dr. Stephen Marshall has held positions on the agency, client, research, marketing technology, and education sides of the media/marketing business. His client portfolio includes work for Siren Marine, Adobe, Nielsen, Creative Energy, Coca-Cola, Texas Pete, ETSU, Glory Foods, and Pal’s Sudden Service, as well as various other for-profits and nonprofits.

Todd Norris

Todd Norris is senior vice president for community health and system advancement with Ballad Health in Johnson City, TN. In this capacity, Norris helps to lead the system’s comprehensive transformation to become a community health improvement organization focused on reducing the regional disease burden through prevention and disease management. Additionally, he heads the philanthropic and grant funding arm charged with advancing the system’s ability to build a legacy of superior care. Prior to this role, Norris served as the chief marketing, communications, and philanthropic officer for Wellmont Health System, which merged with Mountain States Health Alliance to become Ballad Health, and served on the merger integration council. As part of the health system’s vision for the future, Norris will lead the STRONG Children and Families initiative. This initiative will align Ballad’s work with the Accountable Care Community to ensure a conception to career continuum for children in the Appalachian Highlands to have safe, stable, nurturing environments; achieve educational benchmarks; and create pathways to health and well-being. Prior to working in healthcare, Norris served as an administrative leader and development and marketing professional in higher education. He lives in Johnson City with his wife, Whitney, and daughter, Rhea.

Anderson Olds

Anderson Olds is a graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and is the principal strategist for 4Solutions. 4Solutions is a business strategy consulting company using analytics, consulting, and training to enhance digital marketing, fundraising, organization development, and inclusive leadership needs. Olds has six+ years of experience in the nonprofit industry working at the Boys & Girls Clubs, Wesley House Community Center, and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where he currently works as coordinator for diversity initiatives at the Haslam College of Business. Olds currently serves on three boards and chairs the Martin Luther King Jr. Youth Symposium through Knoxville’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Commission. Olds is a strong believer in community and firmly believes it takes U and I to form true unity in community. 

Robert Pack, PhD

Dr. Robert Pack is a professor of community and behavioral health and associate dean for academic affairs in the College of Public Health at East Tennessee State University. He is also the executive director of the ETSU Center for Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment and co-director of the Opioids Research Consortium of Central Appalachia (ORCA).

Karen Pershing, MPH, CPS II

Karen Pershing serves as the executive director of the Metro Drug Coalition in Knoxville, TN. Pershing has provided numerous trainings throughout her career on health-related topics. Other credentials include Women’s Addiction Services Leadership Institute Class of 2014; Leadership Knoxville Class of 2013; Tennessee Department of Health recognition for work in prescription drug abuse prevention; and a member of the Tennessee Public Health Association, Executive Women’s Association, and UT Chancellor’s Associates program. She is a certified prevention specialist II and a 2014 graduate of the UT Consortium for Social Enterprise Effectiveness. Pershing was the 2016 recipient of the Partners and Leadership Award from the Tennessee Public Health Association, as well the recipient of the 2017 FBI Community Director’s Leadership Award, representing the Knoxville Field Office. She was also a 2018 recipient of the Knox Biz Healthcare Heroes Award for her work in addiction and recovery. Other boards she serves on include Harmony Family Center, the Prevention Alliance of Tennessee, and The Sycamore Institute. Pershing received her BS in human development and family studies and an MPH from the University of Tennessee.

Kate Trudell

Kate Trudell is the executive director of Harmony Family Center. She was executive director of the Community Coalition Against Human Trafficking from 2014 to 2019. Prior to taking on these roles, she was the director of individual giving for the YWCA of Nashville and Middle Tennessee. Before beginning her second career in the nonprofit sector, Trudell worked as a senior graphic designer in Nashville for nearly six years. Kate brings a wealth of knowledge in not only fundraising, donor cultivation, grant management, and event management, but also in cause-based marketing, brand strategy, and social media design.

Born and raised in South Carolina, Trudell moved to Tennessee after receiving her BA from Furman University. She has volunteered with numerous organizations, served as event chair for Restore Ministries’ Celebration of Hope, and was a court-appointed special advocate for children with the CASA organization. Trudell is passionate about ensuring every person is valued and respected and she is committed to upholding the dignity and freedom of all people. In her spare time, Trudell enjoys being a wife, a mother to her two children, and a master baker.

Brent Waugh

Brent Waugh is the CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee (BBBS-ETN), and formerly their Chief Development Officer. In 2018, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America named BBBS-ETN a Pinnacle Award winner for excellence in program delivery and fund development. In 2019, the agency was one of three finalists for national mid-sized Agency of the Year. 

Prior to BBBS-ETN, Waugh worked as director of marketing at Northwestern University’s office of alumni relations and development from 2014-2017, and as assistant director for communications at Colorado State University’s fundraising and development division from 2010-2013. Waugh graduated from Tennessee Tech in 2004 and received a master’s degree in communications from the University of Tennessee in 2006. After graduate school, he joined the Communications Arts faculty at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, GA. Waugh enjoys running, movies, and travel. Waugh lives with his wife, Megan, five-month-old, Willow, and silky terrier pup, Theo, in Knoxville.