Eliot Berz named head of Tennessee River Gorge Trust and other business news

  photo  Eliot Berz

Eliot Berz named head of Tennessee River Gorge Trust

Eliot Berz has been promoted to executive director of the Tennessee River Gorge Trust.

Berz succeeds Rick Huffines, who is retiring after 11 years with the trust. Berz formerly served as conservation and access director for the trust and has worked for the nonprofit group for the past seven years. He previously served in various roles, including researcher and field technician, and business and access director.

Berz spearheaded several projects for the trust, including a bird research program during which the team used wildlife tracking technology to connect migratory populations of birds in the gorge with their respective wintering grounds in the tropics. Additionally, he implemented a recreation management plan to create and manage public access to trust properties.

"Eliot has been a vital part of the Tennessee River Gorge Trust for many years now," Scott Smith, trust board chair and First Horizon Bank treasury management sales officer, said in an announcement of the appointment. "As someone who knows the ins and outs of our organization and strongly advocates for conserving the gorge for future generations, Eliot is a wonderful choice for the executive director and will lead our organization well in this new chapter."

Berz graduated with Bachelor of Arts in environment and sustainability from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. He also has a Master of Science in environmental science from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. He serves on the steering committee for the Tennessee Riverline's Chattanooga leadership team and is a member of the Thrive Regional Partnership's natural treasures alliance.

Dr. Charles Talpley joins CHI practice in Hixson

Dr. Charles Tapley has joined CHI Memorial Family Practice Associates — North River.

  photo  Charles Tapley

Tapley earned his medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis. He completed his family medicine residency at Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, Indiana. He is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and has 26 year's experience caring for patients in urgent and primary care settings.

Tapley joins Dr. Kimberly Pickett at CHI Memorial Family Practice Associates — North River, which is in the CHI Memorial Hospital Hixson Professional Office Building at 2051 Hamill Road, Suite 210, in Hixson.

Carrie Harlin heads development for Welcome Home of Chattanooga

Carrie Harlin has joined Welcome Home of Chattanooga as its new director of development. She earned her bachelor's in public relations from Southern Adventist University and her master's degree in professional studies and strategic leadership from Tennessee Tech.

"We are in the midst of great growth for our mission of creating a community of hope, healing and compassion for those who are facing a serious illness or death and need safe shelter," Founding Director Sherry Campbell said in an announcement of Harlin's appointment. "Carrie is a dedicated professional in the nonprofit sector and will be invaluable for us as we move forward."

Welcome Home of Chattanooga works to provide shelter and care for those facing a serious illness or death, partnering with area hospices that provide the professional medical care.

Sue Rice named leader at Sculpture Fields at Montague Park

Sue Rice has been named development and event lead for Sculpture Fields at Montague Park.

Rice, who has more than 25 years of experience with both local and international nonprofit and corporate events, will join Sculpture Fields at Montague Park in a professional capacity to manage development and special events for the organization.

A graduate of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Rice has worked in a variety of areas in nonprofit development and event management.

"We are excited to bring Sue's extensive knowledge and energy to our organization for the future," Kim Adams, the board chair for Sculpture Fields, said in an announcement of her appointment.

Sartipi wins Advanced Energy Leadership award

The Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council presented Mina Sartipi with its 2023 Thomas B. Ballard Advanced Energy Leadership Award last week.

Sartipi is the founding director of the Center for Urban Informatics and Progress at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and was recognized for her research focusing on data-driven approaches to tackling real-world challenges in smart city applications focused on mobility, energy and health. Most notably, under Sartipi's leadership, the Center for Urban Informatics and Progress launched a 1.2-mile M.L. King Boulevard Smart Corridor test bed to accelerate smart city and connected and autonomous vehicle research and then expanded the test-bed with support from the Federal Highway Administration.

"Mina Sartipi embodies the principles of the Tom Ballard Advanced Energy Leadership Award; she is a connector and a champion for smart cities and was instrumental in bringing living laboratories to city streets in Chattanooga," Energy Business Council Executive Director Cortney Piper said in an award presentation.

Sartipi's career began at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville's Bredesen Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Graduate Education. She joined UTC as an assistant professor in 2006, then continued to drive change as she became a Guerry Professor and UC Foundation Professor in 2020.

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