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.

  • Mission

    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.

  • TABS Membership

    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.

  • TABS Goals and Objectives

    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

  • TABS Code of Ethics
    • 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.
  • 2021-2022 TABS Officers

    Rhonda Poole – President, Marshall County

    Kari Simmons – President-Elect, Greeneville

    Lisa VanCleave – Vice-President, Murfreesboro

  • TABS Officers' Duties

    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
  • Organizational History and Past Officers

    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.

    Karen Putman – President, Lincoln County
    Rhonda Poole – President-Elect, Marshall County
    Kari Simmons – Vice-President, Greeneville

    Jennifer Moore – President, Washington County
    Karen Putman – President-Elect, Lincoln County
    Rhonda Poole – Vice-President, Marshall County

    Carol Riordan – President, Franklin Special
    Jennifer Moore – Vice President, Washington County

    Vijaya Subramani – President, Germantown
    Nicole Wagner – President-Elect, Greeneville
    Carol Riordan – Vice President, Franklin Special

    Vivian Altizer – President, Kingsport
    Vijaya Subramani – President-Elect, Germantown
    Beth Latham – Vice President, Lauderdale County

    Lisa Springer – President, Milan Special
    Vivian Altizer – President-Elect, Kingsport
    Beth Latham – Vice President, Lauderdale County

    Lisa Springer – President, Milan Special
    Vivian Altizer – Vice President, Kingsport

    Judy Spears – President, Coffee County
    Jan Nunley – President-Elect, Cumberland County
    Lisa Springer – Vice President, Milan Special

    Rose Ratagick – President, Wilson County
    Clara Perkins – President-Elect, Elizabethton
    Crystal Nelson – Vice-President, Overton County

    Carolyn Davidson – President, Manchester City
    Rose Ratagick – President-Elect, Wilson County
    Clara Perkins – Vice-President, Elizabethton

    Linda Cearley – President, Jackson-Madison
    Carolyn Davidson – President-Elect, Manchester City
    Rose Ratagick – Vice-President, Wilson County

    Linda Carney – President, Obion County
    Tanya Wilson – President-Elect, Huntingdon Special
    Clara Perkins – Vice-President, Elizabethton

    Johna Arwood – President, Lauderdale County
    Linda Carney – President-Elect, Obion County
    Tanya Belew –Vice-President, Huntingdon Special

    Nancy Carpenter – President, Loudon County
    Johna Arwood – President-Elect, Lauderdale County
    Linda Carney – Vice-President, Obion County

    Karen Cooke – President, Shelby County
    Nancy Carpenter – President-Elect, Loudon County
    Shannon Lyon – Vice-President, Obion County

    Regina Fowler – President, Dickson County
    Karen Cooke – President-Elect, Shelby County
    Nancy Carpenter – Vice-President, Loudon County

    Ann McRae – President, Jackson-Madison
    Regina Fowler – President-Elect, Dickson County
    Karen Cooke – Vice-President, Shelby County

    Becky Shankle – President, Tipton County
    Ann McRae – President-Elect, Jackson-Madison
    Regina Fowler – Vice-President, Dickson County

    Judy Sartain – President, Kingsport City
    Charlotte Stinson – Vice-President, Franklin Special
    Becky Shankle – Vice-President, Tipton County

    Deb Insell – President, Bedford County
    Judy Sartain – President-Elect, Kingsport City
    Charlotte Stinson – Vice-President, Franklin Special

    Ann Bates – President, Hamilton County
    Deb Insell – President-Elect, Bedford County
    Marilyn Garrett – Vice-President, Clarksville/Montgomery

    Steve Doremus – President, Sumner County
    Ann Bates – President-Elect, Hamilton County
    Deb Insell –Vice-President, Bedford County

  • TABS Certification Program

    Approved events, experiences, personal growth and development and association participation

    Special Career Development and/or Presentation Form

    TABS Self Assessment

    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.

    There shall be three recognition levels:



    1. Given for accumulation of 100 Credits as follows:
    2. 20 Credits for TABS Conference participation
    3. At least 50 credits for approved events
    4. At least 30 credits for personal development
    5. Award shall consist of a Level 1 pin


    1. Given for accumulation of 200 credits as follows:
    2. 40 credits for TABS Conference participation
    3. At least 100 credits for approved events
    4. At least 60 credits for personal development
    5. Award shall consist of Level II pin


    1. Given for accumulation of 300 credits as follows:
    2. 60 credits for TABS Conference participation
    3. At least 150 credits for approved events
    4. At least 90 credits for personal development
    5. Completion of a self evaluation
    6. Must have attended TSBA Convention and Leadership Conference
    7. Must have made a presentation at a TSBA event or published an article for TSBA
    8. Award shall consist of a Level III pin, a press release to local media, and designation as a Certified Board Secretary
  • Helping Hands

    In keeping with the goals and objective of TABS, board/executive secretaries are encouraged to form mentor relationships with other secretaries across the state. The Helping Hands program is designed to promote this mutual exchange of ideas and experiences.

    Certification credits shall be earned for…

    • Job site visitation/observation to gain/share knowledge about special projects and programs as well as office procedures and set-up;
    • Model training programs that enhance the effectiveness of school board operations; and
    • Suggestions/tips/advice for efficient office operations.