TN Association of Board Secretaries

In an effort to ensure the most efficient and effective organization of school board operations statewide, TABS was established for the purpose of providing a support and professional development organization for school system board/executive secretaries through the mutual exchange of ideas and experiences.

Lisa VanCleave
President, Murfreesboro

Amanda Scalf
President-Elect, Carter County

Jana Gore
Vice-President, Arlington

To elevate board/executive secretarial standards and increase awareness of the vital role of an educated and informed board/executive secretary while gaining recognition as a professional within the field of education.

The membership of TABS shall be open to all county, city, and special school district board/executive secretaries who serve Superintendents and Boards of Education in the state of Tennessee.

Goal 1: Nurture Leadership Qualities
Objective A – Raise the level of secretarial proficiency
Objective B – Develop interpersonal relationships

Goal 2: Promote Better Working Relationships
Objective – Improve communication skills

Goal 3: Instill Confidence to Assume Greater Responsibility
Objective – Validate professionalism through education, experience and commitment

  • To perform the responsibilities of a board/executive secretary for the school system uninfluenced by special interest groups or partisan politics.
  • To respect the decisions of the local Board of Education and Superintendent of Schools.
  • To recognize that authority rests only with the Board of Education in official meetings and that the individual board member has no legal status outside of such meetings.
  • To be responsible for the accurate timely completion of required tasks.
  • To avoid being placed in a position of conflict of interest and refrain from using the position of board/executive secretary with the school system for personal or partisan gain.
  • To implement the responsibilities of board/executive secretary in the most competent professional manner possible.
  • To strive to maintain and enhance the dignity, status and standards of the local school system, TSBA, and TABS.
  • To promote open communications between the school system administration, Board of Education, and the community as a whole.
  • To uphold the rules of confidentiality in certain matters relative to the position of board/executive secretary.
  • To serve as a trusted agent in professional relations with other members of the education team.
  • To participate in individual study and special programs or events that increase personal knowledge of current educational issues, rules, regulations, and statutes.
  • To commit to elevate the standards of all TABS members.

The officers of TABS shall be elected by a majority vote in the annual business meeting during the May conference. Each officer shall serve for a term of one (1) year and shall remain in office until a successor is elected. If there shall be two candidates for an office, the person receiving the larger number of votes shall be elected to such office. In the event there are three or more candidates for an office and any one candidate for such office does not receive a majority vote of the members present, there shall be a runoff election between the two candidates receiving the larger number of votes. In the event the President of TABS ceases to work for a local board of education, the President-Elect automatically assumes the duties of the President for the remainder of the term and shall be eligible to serve an additional term as President. The office of President-Elect shall then remain vacant until the next annual business meeting. The slate of officers and duties there of are as follows:


  • Assist TSBA with planning of annual May Conference as well as the November Conference
  • Preside over annual business meeting
  • Represent TABS at the annual TSBA Convention


  • Assist President with planning of both the annual May and November Conferences
  • Keep the minutes from the May business meeting
  • Perform such other duties as from time to time may be assigned by the President


  • Assist with planning responsibilities of President and President-Elect
  • Receive and process Special Career Development and/or Presentation Requests
  • Perform such other duties as from time to time may be assigned by the President

The Tennessee Association of Board Secretaries (TABS) was founded May, 1998 during the fifth annual conference. The membership elected the following slate of officers and continues to do so each May.

Past Officers

Recognizing the board/executive secretary as an integral part of the total education program in Tennessee school systems; the aim of the TABS Certification Program is to encourage professional growth. As professional criteria are met the local Board of Education shall be assured the individual has achieved necessary skills and knowledge to perform certain duties with a specific level of competency. TSBA shall offer an award to individuals who invest their time and effort into becoming more informed and educated in the effective operations of school boards in the state of Tennessee. The award shall be issued for participation in activities outside of the general scope of work.

Click here to download the TABS Certification Program packet.

TABS Requirements

TABS Participation Events Personal Development
  Level I 20 50 30
  Level II 40 100 60
  Level III* 60 150 90

Special Career Development and/or Presentation Form

To achieve Level III, you must:

  • Complete Self-Assessment
  • Attend TSBA Leadership Conference and Annual Convention
  • Make a presentation at a TSBA event OR publish an article for TSBA