Alumni Board Member Bios
Wilson Sims Jr. '72
Sims was born in Nashville, Tenn. He attended Webb for four years before
graduating as an old guard member of the “notorious” class of 1972.
During his Webb years, Wilson served as prefect, was a member of the
social committee, the soccer team, and was voted “friendliest” by his
classmates. He worked in the Webb Admissions Office from 1978-1980 and
has served as class agent for the class of 1972 for many years, earning
frequent recognition for his service.
Wilson earned a B.A. from
the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an M.B.A. from
Vanderbilt’s Owen Graduate School of Management. He worked with
not-for-profit organizations in North Carolina for several years before
beginning a consulting practice in Columbia, S.C., in 1986. He
established Sims & Steele Consulting in Asheville, NC in 1994.
father, Wilson “Woody” Sims, Sr. is a Webb graduate of the class of
1942, and currently serves as Trustee Emeritus on the Webb Board of
Wilson is an active outdoorsman who enjoys cycling,
tennis, fly fishing, “slow” food cooking, and many other outdoor
activities. Wilson has remained connected with Webb for many years,
including past service on the Alumni Board and as Alumni Chair of the
Webb Fund. He has been very “energized by the school’s leadership,” and is excited to commit time to serving Webb’s Alumni Board once again.
Webb Follin '73
Webb Follin, III was born in Nashville, Tenn. He arrived in
Bell Buckle in the fall of 1969 and graduated in the spring of 1973 as a member
of the Old Guard. In addition to being a prefect, playing on the soccer and
basketball teams, Webb was also a member of the social committee and athletic
council. Since graduation, he has served as a student trustee, class agent, and
member of the Board of Trustees.
Webb attended the University of Alabama earning his B.A. in Communications in 1978. Beginning in 1985, he began working in the investment and redevelopment real estate business, where he continues today. He also founded a bottled water company in 1990, ultimately selling the operation in 2000. In his spare time, Webb enjoys many outdoor activities including fishing, hunting, and landscaping.
Currently serving as class agent and as a member of the Alumni Board, Webb states, "I grew and learned so much during my four years at The Webb School. Serving on the Alumni Board provides another opportunity to help the school so that others might also benefit from a Webb education."
Moe Hill '75 Moe Hill was born in Nashville, Tenn. He attended Webb for four years, graduating in the class of 1975. While there, he played on the soccer team, was a prefect, was elected class president his last three years, and was president of the honor council. As a member of Interact, he scooped ice cream at Miss Jeanne's, and enjoyed an occasional chocolate shake on the house!
Moe attended Sewanee and graduated with a degree in English. He is the owner and president of a residential painting company, which he started soon after college. He and his wife, Jess, have three children. Moe enjoys reading, golf, guitar, travel, hiking, and time with his family.
Moe has served as a student trustee, class agent, and is proud to serve on the alumni board again so that he can give back to the school that has given him so much.
Deborah Horst '75
Deborah Roberts Horst was born in Murfreesboro, Tenn. She
attended Webb for three years, first as a day student and then as a boarder her
senior year and graduated Summa Cum Laude in 1975. As a Webb student, she
was a recipient of the German Award, the Director’s Drama award, co-editor of
the Sawney yearbook, director and lead in the end-of-year play, and with her
acting partner took second in the state in Duet Acting.
Deborah earned a B.A. from the University of Virginia and then worked on
Capitol Hill and at MCI Communications before earning an MBA from the Tuck
School at Dartmouth College. She spent 10+ years at PepsiCo before turning
her attention to small business. For the past eight years, she has been the
Managing Director of Excitations LLC, an e-commerce based company selling
Deborah has a sister, Mary Roberts McMakin (’78) and a brother Jim Roberts
(’84) who also attended Webb.
She loves to ski, sail and travel internationally, and you can often find her
swimming with her dog in the Harpeth River. She is an active member and officer
of the Ft. Nashborough chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and
volunteers at the Salama Institute. Her daughter Maddy lives and works in
Atlanta, and her son Sam is a senior at the University of Wisconsin.
After living all over the country, Deborah moved to Nashville in late 2013 and
is very excited that she now has the opportunity to actively give back to Webb.
She firmly believes that “Webb changed my life, opening doors and broadening my
horizons in ways I still cannot believe, and I am forever grateful for the
education I received, and the experiences I had at the school.”
BOB DAVIES '76
Director- Legal Services, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development – Second Injury Fund.
Bob Davies joined the Tennessee Department of Labor – Second Injury Fund in November 2012 after practicing law for over 25 years with the Nashville firm of Davies, Humphreys, Horton & Reese, where his practice concentrated on general civil litigation, personal injury, insurance defense, employment and worker’s compensation law. He was born in Nashville Tennessee on May 31, 1958, and is a graduate of The Webb School, Bell Buckle, Tenn., The University of Tennessee and The Nashville School of Law. Mr. Davies was licensed to practice law in the State of Tennessee on Oct. 15, 1987
He resides in Nashville, Tenn., with his wife of 27 years, Lisa Davies. Bob and Lisa have two children, Will and Harrison Davies, who are both attending the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.
Charlie Palmer '77
Charlie was born in Shelbyville, Tenn. He attended Webb for one year: that year made a lasting impact on his life and desire to give back to Webb.
Charlie attended Auburn University and earned his B.S. in Biology from Emory University in 1982. A 1983 graduate of the Computer Science Graduate Program at the Citadel and College of Charleston, Charlie’s initial career path took him into technology. He was general manager of Omega Software, director/general manager for RSM Honeywell Systems, and sales manager for BULL Information Systems, vice president of sales for IBM, and vice president of ORACLE practice at Earnst & Young, LLP, in addition to a brief time as an Investment Banker with Merrill Lynch. Today Charlie is general manager of Palmer Designs in Atlanta, land developers and timber farming/management.
Charlie is an avid golfer, and also enjoys yachting, aviation, performance boat racing, and rock climbing.
Of his service to Webb, Charlie says, “I love meeting alumni and friends of Webb! It’s very fulfilling to witness Webb’s success!"
Davis Turner '79
Turner grew up in Murfreesboro, Tennessee and currently lives in Nashville. He
attended Webb as a boarding student his junior and senior years. During his
Webb years, Davis served as prefect, was vice president of his class, and took
part in theatre productions. He has served as class agent for the class of 1979
for many years, was voted “Class Agent of the Year” for his service, and
previously served on the Alumni Board.
Davis has 29 years of experience practicing law. For 22 of those years, Davis has served as in-house counsel to the nation’s largest investor-owned hospital management companies including HCA, OrNda Healthcorp, Quorum Health Group and Vanguard Health Systems. Davis was also a partner at two law firms – Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis and Frost Brown Todd LLC. Davis is currently Vice President and Associate General Counsel for RCCH HealthCare Partners which owns 17 hospitals. Davis earned a B.A. with honors in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an M.B.A. from Vanderbilt’s Owen Graduate School of Management, and a J.D. from Vanderbilt’s School of Law.
Davis’s wife, Melora Wilkins Turner, is a Webb graduate of the class of 1980, and his brother, Andrew, is a Webb graduate of the class of 1982. Davis and Melora have two daughters. Emily (26) lives in New York City and Reed (23) lives in Greenville, S.C. Davis is active at West End United Methodist Church in Nashville having served as chair of its Council on Ministries and its Global Outreach Committee and as a member of its Staff Parish Committee. He has also served on the startup committee and the board of Ten Thousand Villages of Nashville, Inc., a non-profit store that sells fairly traded goods from around the world. Davis formerly served as board chairman of High Hopes, Inc., a therapeutic pre-school and therapy program for children with special needs.
Irv ashford '87
Irvin Ashford, Jr. is senior vice president of corporate and public affairs, director of community development and external affairs for Comerica Bank. He graduated Webb in 1987 after coming to Tennessee from New York City. After Webb, he graduated of Oberlin College in Ohio, and earned dual master’s degrees – one in Public Affairs from the University of Texas and one in Business Administration from the University of Dallas.
Irv credits Webb with transforming his life, as part of remarks he shared with students at Webb in the fall of 2013.
“Webb opened the door to a world that had been closed to me previously. It was my navigator.”
Irv joined Comerica Bank in 2000 and is very involved in the community and civic organizations. He received Comerica’s Volunteer of the Year Award and the Chairman’s Outstanding Achievement Award for leadership and quality. He was named to the 2007 United States delegate class of the British-American Project. Irv is also a Woodrow Wilson International Studies and Public Policy Fellow, an American Marshall Fellow, and a Zeit-Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius Fellow. In 2008, he earned the Dallas Business Journal’s Minority Business Leader Award for his work and outstanding leadership in the business community.
His civic and community involvement includes serving on the board of directors for the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, The People Fund, Kym’s Kids, Nova Charter Academy, Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau. He also serves on the Dallas affiliate board of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure and the Texas Women’s Empowerment Foundation. Irv is a lifetime member of The National Black MBA Association and a member of the Urban Financial Services Coalition and the National Forum of Black Public Administrators.
curtis jenkins '92
Curtis Jarrod Jenkins was born on May 14, 1973 in Bronx, N.Y. to the late
Bishop Raymond A. Jenkins and Overseer Ora L. Jenkins. At the tender age of 14,
he relocated from NYC to Bell Buckle, Tenn., to complete his high school education
at The Webb School. After graduating from Webb, he attended Tennessee State University
in Nashville, Tenn., on an athletic basketball scholarship where he studied
electrical engineering. During the summers he worked for the YMCA of Nashville coaching
and mentoring youth.
On July 31, 1995, he was joined together in Holy matrimony with his true love, Tanisha S. Dingle. They have two children, Tatiana ‘15 (18) and Curtis “Jordan” (12). He also attended Colorado Technical University, where he studied business management and graduated Summa Cum Laude. For the past 16 years, he has worked for AT&T, where he recently received a promotion to Network Manager of the Uverse Department.
Pastor Jenkins gave his life to Christ at the early age of 13 years old. He served under the leadership of his mother and father before leaving home for Tennessee. He later joined the House of God Church in Nashville under the leadership of Bishop Martha Thomas. He served there for many years as an usher, musician, chairman of the brotherhood, deacon, and more. Anything he could find his hands to do, he did it. Through the visionary eye of the late Deacon John R. Thomas, he was charged with the task of mentoring and directing the House of God Youth Community Center. God used this opportunity to teach him how to nurture and lead people. His mother and father always knew there was a calling on his life; and were obedient in waiting for the appointed time.
After the Lord called his father home to rest in 2009, the mantle was passed on to Pastor Jenkins to lead the flock of The Church of His Enduring Grace. He was ordained as an Elder on Nov. 27, 2009, under the leadership of Bishop Guy A. Jenkins Sr. of The Divine Alliance of Churches Inc. It is evident that Pastor Jenkins is a man after God’s own heart by his humility and love he shows toward God’s people. His focus has always been to win souls for the kingdom of God.
Benjamin W. Blakeley '93
Ben was born in Boston, Mass., and now lives in Atlanta, Ga. He was a boarding student at Webb for six years, graduating as a member of the Ancient Guard with the class of 1993. As a student, Ben was a member of the Student Council and served on the Honor Council from 1988 through 1993. He was a member of the National Honor Society, the Cum Laude Society, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Latin Club, and played varsity soccer, baseball, tennis, golf, and lacrosse.
Ben attended Davidson College, where he earned a B.A. in History; he earned his M.B.A. in Finance from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 2004. Ben’s career includes experience as a real estate analyst with Costar Group, director of research with Colliers Turley Martin Tucker, manager of real estate capital markets with Ernst & Young, vice president of finance and acquisitions with Julian LeCraw & Co. He is currently in real estate investment acquisitions with Metzler Realty Advisors in Atlanta.
In addition to his service to Webb as Class Agent and Alumni Board member, Ben is involved with the Mt. Bethel United Methodist Church, Junior Achievement, Habitat for Humanity, the Urban Land Institute, NAIOP, and the University of Tennessee Alumni Association. His personal interests include fly-fishing, soccer, hunting, and reading.
Ben is married to Rachel Blakeley, and they have two children, Meg and William.
Jennifer Rupley Smith '93
Jennifer was born in Bell Buckle, Tenn. She attended Webb for five years, graduating as a member of the Ancient Guard with the class of 1993. As a student, she was involved in many activities, including the Son Will Society, the Oracle staff, the Spanish Club, Interact Club, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. She also won the Erin A. Hinkle award and the Studio Art Award. She remained connected to Webb after graduation thru her service as a class agent. Webb is certainly a Rupley Family tradition. Jennifer’s father and mother are former longtime faculty members, and Jennifer’s brother, Jeff, graduated from Webb in 2002.
Jennifer attended Belmont University where she earned her B.S. in Marketing and became a member of Phi Mu National Women’s fraternity. She worked in healthcare marketing for 15 years. Her current interests include caring for her twin daughters, volunteering for Habitat for Humanity and MOPS International, and travel.
Erin Henrick '94
Erin is from Shelbyville, Tenn. She came to Webb in 1990 and graduated in 1994. As a Webb student, she was involved in volleyball, softball, drama, choir, the honor council, and many different clubs and activities.
After Webb, Erin earned her B.A. from the University of Georgia, and later earned her M.Ed. and Ed.D. from Vanderbilt University. Erin returned to Webb after graduating from UGA to teach 9th and 11th grade English and work in the residential community, serving many different roles, including Davis and Cooper Farris dorm head, director of activities, and director of residential life. She now works at Vanderbilt University as a project manager of a NSF grant, researching instructional improvement in middle school math in large urban school districts.
Erin enjoys spending her free time with her family (husband Josh Henrick '94 and young children Luke, Audrey and Jake, and four aging dogs (three of which were acquired as strays around Bell Buckle!) Her family is active in St. Phillip Church in Franklin, Tenn.
Erin wanted to serve on Webb’s alumni board because, "I have strong connections to Webb as a high school student and as a past faculty member. As a professional educator, I want to give back to a school that shaped who I am in so many different ways.”
Amber Luttrell '94
Amber is from Ruleville, Miss. She currently
lives in Jackson, Tenn. She attended Webb as a boarding student from 1990-1994.
As a Webb student, she was involved in student council, Son Will Society,
choir, tennis, and theater. Amber followed in the footsteps of her father and
uncle, who both attended Webb. Her uncle, Robert G. Edwards, graduated in 1947. She and her Uncle Robert love sharing stories
about life in Bell Buckle and their Webb experiences.
Amber earned her B.A. from Millsaps College, and later earned her J.D. from the University of Mississippi School of Law. She is licensed to practice law in Mississippi and Tennessee. After law school, she moved to Jackson and practiced law at Waldrop & Hall, P.A. from 2001 through June 2015. She focused her practice in the areas of insurance defense litigation, employment law, and workers’ compensation defense. In June 2015, Amber was appointed a Judge of the Tennessee Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims, where she presides over cases in West Tennessee.
Outside of work, Amber enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time with her husband, Zach, and her daughters, Amelia Ann and Ava Grace.
Stuart M. Smith '99
Stuart was born in Mountain View, Mo. He was a boarding student at Webb for four years, graduating as a member of the Old Guard with the class of 1999. As a student he was a member of the Son Will Society, the cross country team, and the lacrosse team.
Stuart attended the University of Missouri at Columbia, receiving his B.S. in Forestry. He is currently forest manager and project manager at family-owned Smith Flooring, Inc, and is pursuing an M.B.A. at Missouri State University. Stuart is also president of both the Mountain View Rotary Club and the heart of the Ozarks United Way Board.
Of his desire to serve Webb on the Alumni Board, Stuart says that he would like to “impact Webb as positively as it impacted me.”
Ted goodman '02
Theodore W. (Ted) Goodman, was born in
Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Like his four siblings, Charles, III (1987),
John (1990), Nora (1999), and Carolyn, (2006), Ted graduated from Webb as a
member of the Ancient Guard in 2002. After Webb, Ted obtained a
certificate in welding from the Tennessee Technology Center in Shelbyville.
Ted went on to graduate from The University of the South in Sewanee,
Tennessee, where he was a History Major, served on the Student Assembly, and
served as a member of the University’s Honor Council for all four years of his
time at Sewanee. Following Sewanee, Ted graduated from the University of
Tennessee, College of Law in Knoxville.
Ted practices law in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, at the law firm of Murfree & Murfree, PLLC, with fellow Webb School Alumnus, Bricke Murfree. Ted focuses his practice in estate planning, probate, business representation, contracts, real estate, and litigation. Ted and his wife, Kelly, live in Murfreesboro.
Ted is enthusiastic and appreciative of his Webb experience, recently telling a group of Webb seniors: “I did not realize how beneficial my Webb education was until I left Webb. Webb is truly a college preparatory school. Because Webb prepared me so well, unlike many of Sewanee classmates, I did not have to ‘learn how to be a college student.’ I am confident that if I had not gone to Webb School, my college GPA would have been lower, and I would not have been able to get into a top-tier law school.”
Caitlin R. Roberts Jennings '03
Caitlin Roberts Jennings was born in Manchester, Tenn. She attended Webb for three years, graduating with the class of 2003. Caitlin currently serves as co-class agent for the class of 2003. As a Webb student, Caitlin was a member of the Son Will Society, Interact Club, the Young Republicans, and a member of the girls’ soccer and basketball teams. Her brother, John Roger, graduated from Webb in 2006. Caitlin is married to her Webb sweetheart, Thomas Jennings ’03.
Caitlin attended Lipscomb University where she earned her B.S. in Marketing and Business Management. She spent three years with the Civic Bank and Trust in Nashville, Tenn., before opening Roberts Insurance in John Roberts Toyota/Nissan in Manchester. Caitlin enjoys travel, reading, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.
Of her enthusiasm for Webb, Caitlin says, “I love Webb! I hope to make a difference in the Webb community while keeping the traditions that make Webb unique.”
Hudson Byrd '05
Hudson Byrd was a boarding student for four years. While at The
Webb School, he played lacrosse and ran cross country. Hudson was a member of
Son Will Society, president of the Young Republicans, served as senior class president and graduated in 2005 as a member of the Old Guard.
Hudson graduated from the University of the South in 2009 with a B.A. in European History and a minor in Religion. During his time there, he was a member of the Order of the Gownsmen, an academic honors society. After Sewanee, he moved to Washington, D.C., in early 2010, where he began working for Congressman Larry Bucshon of Indiana. During his nearly two and a half years, Hudson served as an assistant then legislative correspondent while also working with communications and serving as a source for agricultural issues and legislation. In early 2013, Hudson returned home to Charleston, Mo., to assist his brother, Nelson Byrd ‘99, in the transition and growth of Byrdland Farms Inc. As the fourth generation to be involved in farming, Hudson and his brother have pushed to implement new technology, update grain facilities, and continue efforts to focus on soil fertility and conservation. Hudson is also involved with wildlife and habitat management. Currently, he splits his time between Charleston and Nashville to explore additional interests.
Hudson’s family has a long connection with Webb and he is proud to carry on the tradition of involvement with the school. “I think there is a reason that consecutive generations of families believe in a Webb education,” he said. “My experiences with those who taught me remain invaluable. My time at Webb inspired my interest in numerous subjects and molded my view of individual character. I think the next few years hold great opportunity for Webb, and I am excited to be a part of it.”
sarah delisle '05
DeLisle is originally from Murfreesboro, Tenn., but currently resides in
Nashville. She attended Webb for six years and was a member of the Ancient
Guard. She received a Summa Cum Laude Bible with an Honors Diploma when she
graduated in 2005. Sarah also received the Anna Landis Hightower Award for
graduating at the top of her class. During her time at Webb, Sarah served on
the Honor Council for six years, and she was vice president her senior year.
During her senior year, Sarah also served as the president of the Student
Activities Council and Interact Service Club. Some of Sarah’s fondest memories
were when she was on stage, participating in numerous Webb productions.
After graduating from Webb, Sarah attended Vanderbilt University. She graduated summa cum laude with high honors in 2009 with a double major in Early Childhood Education and Child Studies. While at Vanderbilt, Sarah served on the Vanderbilt Honor Council. Based on Sarah’s GPA and service, she was selected to represent Peabody College as the Banner Bearer during her graduation in 2009. Sarah graduated from Vanderbilt again in the spring of 2010 with a Master’s in Learning and Instruction.
Sarah taught kindergarten and third grade in a Metro Nashville school. She returned to Vanderbilt, where she currently serves as the educational consultant and coordinator of the kindergarten through sixth grade programs at Vanderbilt Programs for Talented Youth. In her spare time, Sarah is involved in the Vanderbilt Young Alumni and attends many Vanderbilt football and basketball games along with her older brother Michael, a 2002 graduate of Webb. Sarah also enjoys participating in a variety of service opportunities through her involvement with Junior League of Nashville.
Sarah is excited about serving on Webb’s Alumni Board. “I think Webb’s leadership team, board members, and staff have found a wonderful balance between tradition and innovation. I am excited for Webb’s future, but I am also reassured that Webb alumni can always “come home” to a recognizable place that is so special to so many people,” she said.
Chase Spurlock '05
Chase was born in Murfreesboro, Tenn. He attended Webb for six years before graduating as an ancient guard member of the class of 2005. Chase served as president of the Student Council his senior year in addition to service on the Honor Council and membership in the National Honor Society. At his Webb graduation, Chase received a Summa Cum Laude Bible, Honors Diploma, and the President’s Award for Academic Excellence.
Chase earned his B.S. with Honors in Biology from The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee graduating Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa. At Sewanee, Chase progressed to student fire chief of the Sewanee Volunteer Fire Department and chair of the honor council. Upon graduation, he received the University of the South’s highest honor, the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Medallion, awarded to the graduating senior who “best exemplifies character, leadership, and service to the University and to the Sewanee community.”
After Sewanee, Chase attended Vanderbilt University where he received his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology and the Sidney P. Colowick award for outstanding research. Chase has continued at Vanderbilt and currently serves on the faculty at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.
Apart from academia, Chase has launched a company, IQuity Labs, to develop diagnostic tools for autoimmune disease based in Nashville, TN.
Of his service to Webb, Chase says, “Webb holds a special place in my life. Throughout my Webb career, I learned a great deal about leadership and the importance of honor. I look forward to working with other board members to strengthen the Webb experience for every member of our community.”