Leaders are teachers and education support professionals who work in schools every day. They represent the interests of the members who elect them. They also represent the interests of the children we teach. At least one Association Representative is elected by members in every school in Tennessee. Members also elect local, state and national officers, as well as delegates to both the TEA and NEA Representative Assemblies. These delegates are charged with setting association policies, annual budgets, action priorities and electing state and national officers. Would you like to make a difference in your local Association? Contact TEA President Beth Brown to find out how.
TEA President Beth Brown
Beth Brown is an English teacher at Grundy County High School. She has been in the education profession and serving Grundy County Schools since 2001. Brown has been an active member of the Grundy County, Tennessee and National Education associations throughout her career. As TEA president, she has led the association’s advocacy efforts to eliminate high-stakes standardized tests and increase funding for public education. Brown has also prioritized racial and social justice issues throughout her tenure as TEA president. She also serves as the Southeast Regional Vice President on the Board of Directors for the National Council of State Education Associations and on the Professional Standards and Practice Committee for NEA.
Prior to being elected TEA President, Brown served her local association in a variety of leadership positions, including president, chief negotiator, grievance chairperson, membership chairperson, and collaborative conferencing chairperson. At the state level, she has served on various committees, including the Executive, Budget, and Educator Advocacy Committees, as well as the IPD Commission and the Dues Task Force. Brown earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Middle Tennessee State University and earned a master’s degree in Education Leadership from Carson Newman University.
TEA Vice President Tanya T. Coats is currently the President of the Knox Education Association (KCEA) and Vice President of the Tennessee Education Association (TEA). Prior to her being elected to her local and state executive boards, she served as an educator for the Knox County School System as a Curriculum Facilitator. In addition, she has over 25 years of experience working at all levels of public education. She has been a high school math teacher, middle school science and social studies teacher and an elementary educator to include serving as a Kindergarten and Fourth grade teacher. She has a dual degree with a B.A. in English & Math and a M.Ed. in Inclusive Early Childhood Education from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, followed by an Ed.S in Leadership from Lincoln Memorial University; where she is also a doctoral candidate with an emphasis on administration and supervision. She is the proud mother of two adult children, Dreama & Christian. She also has custody of her nieces: Brooklyn, Feliciti and Taegon. Family is important to her.
As a teacher for 25 years in Tennessee, Coats has been an advocate, as well as became increasingly aware of issues that have had negative impacts on the students and teachers that comprise our public education system. Early on, she realized she could no longer just “go in my room and teach,” or ignore issues that were affecting her school, her coworkers, and her students. As a result, Coats has built relationships with many teachers and community organizations across the community, state, and the nation that share a passion for improving our system. Part of this journey has involved becoming an active member of the TEA, a group of educators who refuse to sit complacent, as challenges in education are mounting around us or for the failure of our society to erase poverty and inequalities through racial and social injustices.
TEA Executive Director Terrance J. Gibson
Terrance J. Gibson, a Memphis native, has worked for TEA for more than 20 years supporting thousands of teachers, school administrators, education support professionals, and students. Prior to being named executive director, he worked at all levels of the association from a student campus president, to coordinating instructional and professional development models, to more recently serving as Assistant Executive Director. Prior to his work with the association, Gibson was a classroom teacher in Metro Nashville Public Schools.
In addition to his work in public education, Gibson has worked with non-profit organizations such as 100 Black Men, and holds professional memberships in Phi Delta Kappa, National Staff Association for the Improvement of Instruction (NSAII), ASCD, Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), The Legacy Education Foundation (501c3) and the National Education Association. He also belongs to Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society, Golden Key Honor Society, and is a life member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated.