Niswonger Foundation

Eight School Districts Participate in a

“Learning Together Day”

of Professional Development

The Niswonger Foundation, East Tennessee State University, Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents and eight Northeast Tennessee School Districts, and University School, joined in partnership on October 22 for the Inaugural Learning Together Day: “One Region, One Purpose, Every Child.”  This professional development day hosted nearly 2000 educators from across the region.

Participating schools included: Carter County Schools, Johnson County Schools, University School, Cocke County Schools, Kingsport City Schools, Elizabethton City Schools, Newport City Schools, Greene County Schools, and Sullivan County Schools.

While teachers were gathered at various locations across the region, the Opening Activities were live streamed from the Martin Center for the Performing Arts, at East Tennessee State University, beginning at 9:00 a.m.  Dr. Brian Noland, President of East Tennessee State University, and Dr. Nancy Dishner, President and CEO of the Niswonger Foundation hosted the opening event.

The Keynote Speaker, Hasan Davis, was in-person at the Martin Center and live streamed the opening keynote address to all remote locations.  Davis served as Commissioner of Juvenile Justice for the Commonwealth of Kentucky.  An internationally recognized writer and speaker, his book “Written Off” is the culmination of a lifetime of love and lessons that have shaped his personal journey from a young man in crisis to a champion for children.  Davis holds the belief that each child can and will succeed if adults in their world create hope.

There were nine locations where breakout sessions were set up for each topic offered.  These locations included:  The Martin Center and Millennium Centers at ETSU, TCAT Elizabethton, Elizabethton High School, West Ridge High School, in Sullivan County, Chuckey Doak High School, Chuckey Doak Middle School and Doak Elementary School, in Greene County and Dobyns Bennett High School, in Kingsport.  The topics offered were:  STEM, Benchmark Assessments and State Standards Literacy Development, Counselor Convening, Fine Arts and Physical Education, Virtual Learning and Advanced Placement, and Administrator Support.

More than 175 presenters lead “best practice” discussions at each of the breakout sessions.  Many of these presenters were educators from the region.

    The Niswonger Foundation was established in 2001 to make a positive and sustainable difference in education in Northeast Tennessee. This dream was envisioned by Scott M. Niswonger, who founded Landair Transport, Inc. and Forward Air Corporation. These companies were the first two Greeneville-based companies to be taken public in the history of Greene County, Tennessee. Jointly, the companies have combined annual revenue of over one-billion-dollars and employ more than 5000 people.


    223 North Main Street
    P.O. Box 1508
    Greeneville, TN 37744


    (423) 820-8181


    (423) 588-5933