Month: February 2022

Eight New Board Members Welcomed

Eight new board members were approved at Bluegrass Tomorrow’s 33rd Annual Meeting on February 23, including Morehead State University President Jay Morgan and Transylvania University President Brien Lewis.  Drs. Morgan and Lewis were appointed by virtue of their acceptance as the new co-chairs of the Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium, one of Bluegrass Tomorrow’s two divisions.

Also approved were Houston Hall, Lexington Market President of Forcht Bank; Dr. David Gilliam, Superintendent of Madison County Schools; Liz Hodge Realtor and Team Leader of Winners Circle Realty Group, Lifstyl Real Estate /

Executive Director, A Running Start; David Duttlinger, Executive Director of the Bluegrass Area Development District; Katherine Osborne, Associate & Project Engineer at Stantec, and Sonia Sanders Vice President at Kentucky State University.  These new board members will serve three-year terms.

In addition, two new Executive Committee members were approved:  Amy Samples of AppHarvest and Jessica Berry YMCA of Central Kentucky.  They join Executive Committee officers also appointed: Chair Daryl Smith, KU/LG&E, Vice Chair Shelby Fryman Messer Construction, Treasurer Allen Norvell Blue & Co., Carrie McIntosh Fayette County Farm Bureau, Past Chair Larry Jones Community Trust Bank, Vice President Bluegrass Forever Green Division Dr. Blaine Early, and Vice President Education Division Dr. David Tudor Sullivan University.  Officers and Executive Committee members are appointed to one-year terms.

Returning Executive Committee members include:  Mark Dill Merrill Lynch, Nick Comer East Kentucky Power Cooperative, Kathy Plomin LFUCG Council Member, Megan Hogan Bell Engineering and Kyle Lake Prosper Media.

Bluegrass Tomorrow is a 501c3 non-profit organization governed by a geographically, technical, and culturally diverse Board of Directors and Executive Committee. The organization monitors Quality of Life issues and activities across the region promoting what is best of the greater good.

What makes BGT unique is we are an independent non-profit led by key regional leaders, 50 percent of our 57 board members are from outside Fayette County, allowing the organization to  nimble and able to change directions quickly as circumstances dictate to address emerging issues and opportunities that are important to the region.

A few other key highlights for the 2022 Bluegrass Tomorrow Board of Directors:

  • 20 female members representing 35% of the board
  • 12 young professionals (under 40) 12% of the board
  • 8 Education Executives including 3 university presidents and 3 vice presidents,
  • 6 elected officials including 3 mayors and 2 county judges
  • 35% of members represent companies or organizations that operate from, or are located in, multiple Bluegrass counties E

Mr. Brien Lewis, President of Transylvania University Joins Board

Bluegrass Region Statement

“I arrived in the Bluegrass at the outset of the pandemic and, even at a time when people could not connect and interact as they normally would, the warmth and encouragement of the people and the place could not be diminished. The feeling I get overwhelmingly is of enthusiasm for embracing the opportunities before us.”

Biography – President Brien Lewis

Brien Lewis began serving as the 28th president of Transylvania University on July 1, 2020.

He previously served as president of Catawba College, a private, liberal arts college in Salisbury, North Carolina for 8 years.

A native of Toronto, Canada, Lewis holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a Morehead Scholar and Student Body President. He earned a Juris Doctor from the University of Toronto. 

Lewis worked as an attorney and mediator in North Carolina before moving into higher education at Winthrop University in South Carolina, where he was an Associate Professor of Business Administration, the founding Dean of University College, and Vice President for University Development and Alumni Relations.

Since arriving in Lexington, Lewis has joined the boards of Bluegrass Tomorrow, Commerce Lexington and the Downtown Lexington Partnership. Throughout his career, he has also acted in a number of student and community theater productions and looks forward to finding opportunities to continue doing so.