Click Here To Listen Williamson Business 100 Leading Women Mindy Tate
Mindy Tate has been Executive Director of Franklin Tomorrow since 2011, having previously served the non-profit community visioning organization as a board member and president during her almost 30-year career in the news media.
A native of Indiana, Tate grew up in Nashville, attending David Lipscomb High School before pursuing a journalism degree at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro. She first came to Franklin and Williamson County in 1982 as a summer intern at The Review Appeal and returned full-time as a staff writer and photographer in 1983. After five years at The Review Appeal, she joined the Brentwood Journal as News Editor, rising to the rank of Editor during her five-year career at that weekly publication.
After a brief stint with the local cable provider as a Director of Programming for Williamson County and Creative Director of its local advertising division for an eight-county region in Middle Tennessee. Despite the excitement of hosting a live newscast twice daily as well as a weekly informational show, Tate returned to her roots as a written-word journalist with the Nashville Business Journal, serving as managing editor for almost two years.
Professionally, there was only one thing greater than Tate’s love of the written word and that was her love of Williamson County. She returned in 1996 as editor of The Review Appeal, by then a three-day per week newspaper which also by then owned the Brentwood Journal. Realizing an opportunity, she oversaw the start-up of a weekly Journal of Spring Hill and Thompson’s Station. With the addition of this weekly newspaper and the creation of a Saturday edition to focus on Friday night prep sports, The Review Appeal became a six-day newspaper.
When it was purchased by The Tennessean in 2004, Tate was one of a handful of employees who joined the Williamson A.M. team, serving 18 months as news editor for the publication. When she left Gannett in August 2005, it was with a clear purpose – to assemble investors and start a new weekly newspaper for Franklin and Williamson County.
By Nov. 1, 2005, she had assembled her investors and work began to create the new newspaper. Hiring staff, finding offices, designing the publication and building support for its launch was all accomplished within 45 days and the first edition of the Williamson Herald was published on Dec. 15, 2005. More than 500 people packed the launch party and the publication still enjoys success today under the direction of Publisher Derby Jones and his staff.
Since joining Franklin Tomorrow in 2011, the organization has seen growth in existing programs such as its quarterly Breakfast With the Mayors, which regularly draws 350 or more people for the events hosted by Franklin Mayor Ken Moore and Williamson County Mayor Rogers Anderson. Several new programs and events have also been established, including the creation of Friends of Franklin Parks as a subsidiary of Franklin Tomorrow. During its formative stages, Tate served both organizations as Executive Director. Other new programs started during Tate’s tenure include Franklin Tomorrow’s monthly FrankTalks lecture series, the annual Vision City Visit, and the annual Mayor’s Cup Golf Tournament.
In 2016, Tate realized a long-held personal goal of completing her undergraduate degree after a 30-year break. Taking online classes and completing a thesis, she received her Liberal Arts degree from Middle Tennessee State University in December 2016, enjoying the experience of “walking the line” to receive her diploma with family and friends on hand to watch.
Tate is an active member of the community, including her membership in the Rotary Club of Cool Springs, which she has served as president and other leadership roles at the club and District 6760 level. She is a graduate of Leadership Brentwood, Leadership Franklin, and Leadership Middle Tennessee, as well as the Transit Leadership Academy, Franklin Citizens Police Academy, and Rotary Leadership Academy. Her hobbies include traveling with her spousal equivalent Mike Thompson, cooking for family and friends, and reading a good book.