Bureau of Parks & Conservation Leadership
The State’s Bureau of Parks and Conservation lies within the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. The Bureau of Parks and Conservation is responsible for managing Tennessee State Parks, State Natural Areas, State Archaeology, and outdoor Recreation Resources.
The Bureau of Parks and Conservation is led by a Deputy Commissioner with a team of Directors that each oversee one of the Bureau’s 7 primary divisions: (1) Bureau Strategy & Support; (2) State Park Operations; (3) State Park Hospitality; (4) Marketing, Revenue & Guest Experience; (5) Facilities and Land Management; (6) Conservation (State Natural Areas and Archaeology); and (7) Recreation Resources.
Jim Bryson | Deputy Commissioner
Jim Bryson was appointed TDEC’s Deputy Commissioner for Parks and Conservation in May 2019. He came to TDEC from the company he founded in 1986 and last served as Chairman, 20/20 Research Inc., an international market research consulting, project management and technology firm based in Nashville. There he demonstrated a thoughtful leadership approach acknowledged for its outstanding employee culture and mission-driven success. From guiding the growth of his company to his service as a state senator in the Tennessee General Assembly from 2003 to 2007, Jim has been involved with a host of local projects improving our community and has been a national leader in the development of successful relief projects. Jim earned his bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and received a Master’s in Business Administration from Vanderbilt University before founding 20/20 Research.
Strategy & Support
The Division of Strategy & Support provides bureau-wide strategic leadership and support functions. It is primarily responsible for the Bureau’s strategic planning, for leading major strategic initiatives, and for supporting all the Bureau's various divisions with administrative services and GIS.
Brian Clifford | Director
While an entrepreneur and litigation attorney by trade, Brian joined the Bureau because of his passion for all things parks and conservation. He admires the zealous and selfless work of our Bureau to protect, conserve, and share our state’s natural and cultural resources for all Tennesseans. When he’s not working, you’ll likely find him with his family exploring our parks, boating, hunting, fishing, and eating Jolly Ranchers. He lives in Franklin with his wife Michelle, daughter Caroline, son Hayes, and golden retriever Dolly Parton.
State Park Operations
The Division of State Park Operations oversees the non-hospitality functions of the 56 state park units and includes the Chief Ranger’s Office and the Interpretative Programming and Education (IP&E) functions.
Mike Robertson | Director
Mike Robertson was named Director of State Park Operations in 2012. Mike has worked his entire professional career in Tennessee State Parks, including Reelfoot Lake, Meeman Shelby, Big Hill Pond, Bledsoe Creek, David Crockett and Tims Ford State Parks. He served as a Park Attendant, Seasonal Interpretive Recreator, Park Ranger, Park Manager and Parks Area Manager, before becoming the Director of Park Operations. Mike earned his B.S. degree in Natural Resource Management, Parks and Recreation, from the University of Tennessee at Martin.
State Park Hospitality
The Division of State Parks Hospitality oversees the hospitality functions of Tennessee State Parks and includes management of the 6 resort park Lodges and conference centers, resort park cabin operations, and the 9 golf courses.
Shannon Bowles | Director
Shannon is a long-term veteran of the hospitality industry. After more than thirty- three years of distinguished service with Marriott International. Shannon retired in 2019, having served as General Manager for the Nashville Airport Marriott and an Area General Manager role in TN. She began a new career with the State of TN, dedicated to modernizing the hospitality operations of our TN State Parks.
Revenue, Marketing, and Guest Experience
The Division of Revenue, Marketing, and Guest Experience oversees the branding, marketing, and revenue generation efforts for Tennessee State Parks. While leveraging the uniqueness of each individual state park, this team is focused on sharing the stories and mission of Tennessee State Parks through digital and print marketing efforts. They also develop gift shop operations, manage reservation systems, promote group sales, produce The Tennessee Conservationist Magazine, and develop events and new revenue streams along with marketing plans to support them. Their goal is to promote and offer our guests authentic adventures, exceptional outdoor encounters, and create memorable experiences for everyone who visits Tennessee State Parks.
Morgan Gilman Bologeorges | Director
Morgan Bologeorges was named Director of Marketing, Revenue, and Guest Experience in 2020. She previously served Tennessee State Parks in various roles including Director of Revenue and Guest Experience; Senior Marketing Analyst; and Marketing Manager. Prior to joining Tennessee State Parks, Morgan worked in the sports and music business industries and brings a variety of skills in marketing, sales, event planning, and finance. Morgan earned her Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Illinois and her Master of Sport Administration from Belmont University. She is also a graduate of the TDEC Green Leadership Program and the Tennessee Government Management Institute.
Facilities and Land Management
The Division of Facilities and Land Management includes oversight of the major capital improvement and maintenance budget for all state park buildings and facilities. Within this division, the land program is responsible for the acquisition of priority conservation lands and for dealing with boundary issues and easements.
Ben Dunn | Director
Ben was promoted to Director of Facilities and Land Management in 2019. Ben with a team of regional and central office staff manage the day to day operations of the Facilities and Land Management's three branches which includes minor maintenance, capital projects and land management for all 56 state parks. Ben is a Nashville native and earned his B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Tennessee.
The Bureau of Parks and Conservation includes the Division of Natural Areas and the Division of Archaeology. Working under the authority of the Rare Plant Protection and Conservation Act and the Natural Areas Act, the Division of Natural Areas tracks rare species and natural communities throughout Tennessee, oversees management of designated state natural areas, and evaluates lands for inclusion into the system of state natural areas and parks. Established by the Tennessee Antiquities Act, the Division of Archaeology is charged with maintaining a statewide program to identify and excavate archaeological sites, to conduct research and planning, to curate artifacts and sites, and to share its findings with the public and scientific community. The Division of Archaeology is the central repository for information about archaeological sites in the state and works with a wide range of stakeholders to address archaeological concerns on public and private property.
Roger McCoy | Director
Roger McCoy has an M.S. in botany and worked with the Division of Natural Areas since 1998. With the other staff members from the division, Roger conducts rare species searches and monitoring and oversees rare species management on state natural areas. Some notable projects on which he has worked include community classification and rare species searches on a variety of lands including private lands, national parks, national and state forests, and Department of Defense lands. Roger has been the lead researcher on a variety of projects to assess the status of federally listed and candidate plant species.
The Division of Recreation Resources provides parks and recreation grant, planning and technical assistance services to local governments in Tennessee. The grant programs also support and protect the natural and cultural resources of our state park system and provide funding for community park development, trails development and land acquisition. Our funding sources include the Land and Water Conservation Fund, Local Parks and Recreation Fund, the Recreational Trails Program, and the Tennessee Recreation Initiative Program.
Anne Marshall | Director
Anne Marshall received her degree in Recreation Administration from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and is also a graduate of the Tennessee Government Executive Institute, NRPA’s Executive Development Program and the Conservation Leadership School. Anne’s professional emphasis has always been on outdoor recreation, natural and cultural resource protection and leadership development.
With over 37 years in the field of parks and recreation administration and conservation planning, her vision for the Recreation Resources program reflects the values that staff wish to emulate and project to our customers, the taxpayers of the State of Tennessee.