Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Mayor Bingham Visits Japan

Lewisburg Mayor Jim Bingham just returned from Japan as a Tennessee delegate for the Southeast U.S. and Japan (SEUS Japan) trade conference last week in Tokyo. The mayor met with executives of Meiwa Industry Co. Ltd., an automotive supplier that recently opened its first North American facility in Lewisburg, TN. 
The State of Tennessee is one of the main states in the southeast for Japanese company relationships and offered the following video during a presentation at the SEUS Japan conference. The video features Calsonic Kansei North America and Meiwa Industry North America - two Japanese companies with operations in Lewisburg, TN. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Rock Creek Park Improvement Project Planned

Calsonic Kansei Provides Initial Donation and Challenge
Mayor Jim Bingham and CKNA COO Eric Huch, seated, make the donation announcement with (l-r) Mike Layne, CKNA SRVP, Artie Allen, City Council, Matt Mulliniks, SR Director of Sales, Roy Haislip, City Council, Randall Dunn, City Manager, Steve Thomas, City Council and Greg Lowe, ED Director.
Following the 20-year Vision Plan for Lewisburg released earlier this year, the Friends of Lewisburg Parks is forming to address the parks and green space in the city and has made plans to begin with improvements to Rock Creek Park.
The Vision Plan highlighted the Lewisburg Parks and Recreation system as an asset to the community and that preserving and building upon this asset should take place over the next 20 years. The Friends of Lewisburg Parks is a group of volunteers in cooperation with officials from the City of Lewisburg to create a public and private partnership to improve upon the parks system in Lewisburg beginning with the Rock Creek Park project.
Officials with Calsonic Kansei North America became involved in the project and saw the opportunity to give back to Lewisburg to celebrate their 30th Anniversary in Lewisburg. Discussions between company officials, the city and the Friends of Lewisburg Parks developed into a plan to improve Rock Creek Park as an initial project that the groups hope to grow into more projects in other parks and green spaces throughout the city.
The City of Lewisburg hired HFR Design to develop an improvement plan for Rock Creek Park that includes underground utilities, tiered seating along the hillside, stage improvements and other upgrades to be completed in phases over the next year. The plan was presented to officials at CKNA and the company offered an initial donation and a challenge to its fellow industries in Lewisburg.
“Calsonic Kansei North America announces that the company will offer the first $50,000 for the Rock Creek Park project in honor of its 30th Anniversary of operating in Lewisburg,” said Erich Huch, Chief Operations Officer for CKNA. “We offer this initial donation along with a challenge to the other industries in Lewisburg to donate to this project and help to make Rock Creek Park even more of a centerpiece of downtown Lewisburg.”
Huch went on to say that if the target fund for this project is met by donations from industries, businesses and individuals by the spring of 2015 that CKNA will donate an additional $50,000 to the project.
The Friends of Lewisburg Parks will use this initial donation to seek more volunteers to help continue the fundraising effort needed to reach a target funding goal by the spring of next year.
The Rock Creek Park project comes as the City of Lewisburg is seeking grant funding to improve the 1st Avenue corridor that connects the Lewisburg Square to Rock Creek Park. The plan will be to upgrade the sidewalks on 1st Avenue and add bike lanes, underground utilities and street lighting that match those on the Lewisburg Square. The two projects together will be developed and implemented over the next year and is expected to make a dramatic improvement to the downtown area of the city.
Once the Rock Creek Park project and the 1st Avenue corridor project are completed, the Friends of Lewisburg Parks will choose another park or green space area in the city on which to develop a project in accordance with the Lewisburg Vision Plan. 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Lewisburg Police Chief Named TACP President

Forbis First Lewisburg Police Chief to Hold Post

Lewisburg Police Chief Chuck Forbis was sworn in as President of the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police (TACP) during the association’s annual conference on August 8, 2014 in Chattanooga to become the first Lewisburg Police Chief to hold this position.
The TACP is an association that brings the state’s chiefs of police together to discuss best practices, a legislative agenda for law enforcement in Tennessee and to also provide training for all chiefs of police in the state. Forbis has served as 2nd Vice President and was named 1st Vice President at last year’s conference before being elected to take the presidency of the association for a one-year term 2014-2015.
“It is an honor to serve this association to represent all of the police chiefs in Tennessee and to be the first from Lewisburg,” said Chief Forbis. “Hopefully, this will begin a long line of Lewisburg Police Chiefs to hold this position in the future.”
Forbis will now direct the association that meets six times annually and offers all the state’s chiefs of police a valuable resource to better perform their duties. He expects to continue serving the association following his term as president by first serving on its board of directors and then a post as one of the association’s committee chairs.
Forbis was joined at the annual TACP conference to receive this honor by Lewisburg City Manager Randall Dunn, wife Rhonda and Councilman Steve Thomas.
From Left to Right – Councilman Steve Thomas, Police Chief Chuck Forbis, Rhonda Dunn and City Manager Randall Dunn pose for pictures following Chief Forbis’ swearing in. 
“First of all, I am happy for Chief Forbis and to recognize him for this honor,” said City Manager Dunn. “When you realize that most of the police chiefs that have been president of this association have come from metro areas of the state, you see how great an honor this is. Lewisburg is fortunate to have someone with Chief Forbis’ qualifications serving as our Chief of Police.”
Lewisburg Police Chief Chuck Forbis addresses the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police following his swearing-in as association President. 

“Chief Forbis has brought a new degree of professionalism and community service to our department,” said Councilman Steve Thomas. “It is honor for the whole city for him to be recognized by his peers.”

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

TN Promise Begins in Marshall County

Mentors Wanted in Marshall County
The Tennessee Promise is both a scholarship and mentoring program that will begin in the fall of 2015.

It will provide students a last-­‐dollar scholarship, meaning the scholarship will cover tuition and fees not covered by the Pell grant, the HOPE scholarship, or TSAA. While removing the financial burden is key, a critical component of Tennessee Promise is the individual guidance each participant will receive from a mentor who will provide guidance and assistance as the student enters higher education.

In addition, students will be required to complete eight hours of community service per term enrolled, as well as maintain satisfactory academic progress (2.0 GPA).

To make this program work for the students of Marshall County, mentors are being sought who can:

  • Invest 10-15 Hours Annually assisting 5 to 10 high school seniors with post-secondary success
  • Be 21-years-old or older
  • Pass a Background Check

To become a Mentor for the program, an individual will:

  • Apply online at by November 1, 2014
  • Complete Mandatory Mentor Training by December 15, 2014
  • Attend Two (2) Assigned Mandatory Team Meetings
  • Contact Students At Least Once Every Two Weeks from January through December

If you are interested in helping our young people take advantage of this program to succeed in their post-secondary career plans, please contact Mike Wiles at (931) 993-6109 or

Please consider becoming a part of this important program and to help Marshall County join the rest of the State of Tennessee in achieving Gov. Bill Haslam's Drive to 55 campaign.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

TCAT – Pulaski Forms Partnership to Make Routsis Training Available to Plastics Industry

Technical Training for Injection Molders, Parts and Mold Designers
The Tennessee College of Applied Technology – Pulaski is pleased to announce the addition of a
series of plastics training courses from Routsis Training, the premier training provider in the
plastics industry, to its comprehensive Advanced Manufacturing Education program. The
college was able to offer this training through a partnership with local economic development
agencies and industry. The Giles County Economic Development Commission, Lewisburg
Economic Development Commission, Marshall County Joint Economic and Community
Development Board and Magneti Marelli provided funding to assist TCAT – Pulaski in the
purchase of the online training program.
The partnership was spearheaded by Advanced Manufacturing Education program instructor
Dino Owen who saw a need among the regions 130 plastics related manufacturers. “Offering
these industry-leading training courses is part of the overall strategy of expanding the college’s
programs to address all of the plastics industry training needs,” said Mr. Owen. The decision
was based on the extensive training materials that Routsis offers for injection molding (over 100
training courses) as well as part design and mold design. The Routsis Training platform is
available online, anytime, on demand.
The training from Routsis Training benefits all manufacturing personnel, from tool and die and
operators to process technicians and material handlers and includes instruction using the
industry’s best practices with an emphasis on safety. The design – based training enables
engineers to update their design practices for plastics parts, and to save time and money in mold
Overall, the plastics industry is the second-largest manufacturing segment in the U.S. according
to SPI, the plastics industry trade organization. Nearly 45,000 Tennesseans are employed within
the chemicals and plastics sector. The plastics training partnership led by the Tennessee College
of Applied Technology – Pulaski represents a commitment to prepare and maintain a qualified
workforce to further strengthen this important industry segment.
Routsis training is used in more than 3000 companies, including over 100 learning centers and
educational institutions worldwide that use its interactive training programs as part of their
standard curriculum. Routsis also is endorsed by the Society of Plastics Engineers. For more
information contact Dino Owen at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology – Pulaski at

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Forgie's Fruit Farm Event to Celebrate 20 Years

Veteran or Beginner, Tennessee Peach Farmers Have Reason to Celebrate This Summer
Thursday, July 17: Forgie’s Fruit Farm
Bill Forgie
2000 Collier Road, Lewisburg, TN   37091  (Marshall County)

Who:  All media are invited.  Local officials are also encouraged to attend. Lunch will be provided for those who RSVP to Pamela Bartholomew, Tennessee Department of Agriculture Agritourism Coordinator, at or 615-837-5348.
Time: Media day activities will begin at 11:00 a.m. local time.

Nashville, July 13 –   Forgie’s Fruit Farm near Lewisburg is turning 20.  Up north of Nashville near Springfield, a 25 year old farmer is just getting started in the orchard business.  Both have good reason to celebrate this summer, though: peaches.
Tennessee’s climate doesn’t guarantee a peach crop every year.  In fact, Tennessee spring frosts allow for a bumper peach crop just about once every five years, depending on where in the state the orchard is located.  This year, most of Middle Tennessee just missed a capricious late freeze that damaged crops to the east but left orchards like Forgie’s and Red River Farm poised for a peachy summer.
Pick Tennessee Products will host media days to get the word out about this year’s crop at Red River Farm on Tuesday, July 15, and at Forgie’s Fruit Farm on Thursday, July 17.  At each Pick Tennessee Products Media Day, participating media can interview farmers and area officials in attendance, get footage and photographs of visitors and receive a “goody bag” including digital images and information about local foods and farms. 
In Tyler Sneed’s case, young doesn’t mean inexperienced.  Sneed is a 4thgeneration farmer who currently farms blackberries, concord grapes, soybeans, corn, wheat and  tobacco in addition to the 500 trees that will be loaded with peaches through August.  Sneed lives on the farm in an old tobacco barn he converted into a living space overlooking the Red River.  Sneed will serve cobbler made with the farm’s blackberries and peaches, plus peach ice cream.
The Forgie family makes their years of experience count.  Just last year they grew the world’s largest peach with a variety that weighed in just under 3 lbs.  The farm has beautifully manicured rows of fruit trees, but also offers pick your own sweet corn, tomatoes, melons and other popular types of produce.  Media will be treated to a wagon ride through the picturesque community, as well as treated to a barbecue luncheon with homemade peach cobbler peach cheese cake.
Tuesday, July 15:  Red River Farm
Tyler Sneed
5350 Draper Road, Springfield, TN (Robertson County)