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Advisory Board

Tennessee Opportunity Pilot Planning Grant Application Cycle is Now Open
TOA Planning Grant Application Cover

The Tennessee Opportunity Pilot Initiative Planning Grant Application period is now open from September 1, 2021 9:00 AM (CST) to October 15, 2021 5:00 PM (CST).

Collaboratives that are interested in pursuing this opportunity are encouraged to review the Tennessee Opportunity Pilot Initiative Planning Grant Application Guide in detail and follow instructions to submit an application.

Click here to access the Application Guide.

Certification of Acknowledgement

Budget Template

Interested in learning more?

Click one of the buttons below to download the TN Opportunity Pilot Initiative fact sheet.

Families First Community Advisory Board

Created by the 2021 Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Opportunity Act (TOA), the Families First Community Advisory Board brings together a combination of representatives from state agencies, local government, private and nonprofit organizations, business and industry, faith-based organizations, regional Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) partners, and current or former Families first/TANF customers. Board members are appointed by Speakers of both the House and Senate, and State leadership. The Board is united in their mission to transform the way Tennessee delivers supportive services to families in need. As part of the TANF Opportunity Act, the Board will direct grants and other support to community organizations that demonstrate a shared vision for Transforming Tennessee. Grants will be approved for those community organizations that develop innovative program plans with a strong likelihood of success. A successful program will be built around two key goals: 1) increasing the individual capacity of families receiving services; and 2) decreasing the dependency of those families on state provided support.

Increasing Capacity to Decrease Dependency is the path to Transforming Tennessee.  

Board Purpose

The Families First Community Advisory Board has multiple goals: 

  • Review and approve $175 million in planning and implementation grants through the Tennessee Opportunity Pilot Program.  This program will fund seven pilot programs (two in each grand division and one offered by TDHS) to provide comprehensive support to families as they move from crisis to career pathways.
  • Approve the Department’s retention of a research partner or partners to assist in the research and evaluation of the Tennessee Opportunity Pilot Program.
  • Provide input and recommendations on existing Families First and Two-Generation program policies and grant programs.
  • Submit a report to the Tennessee General Assembly.

Current Board Members*

  • Tennessee Department of Human Services Commissioner Clarence H. Carter (Chair)
  • Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Jeff McCord
  • Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bob Rolfe
  • Tennessee Department of Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn
  • Tennessee Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey
  • Britney Cleveland, current TDHS employee in Knox County (TDHS Appointee)
  • Rachael Corry, current TDHS employee (TDHS Appointee)
  • LaTerre Pleasant, Nashville Resident (TDHS Appointee)
  • Wayne County Executive Jim Mangubat (TDHS Appointee)
  • Tennessee Higher Education Commission Executive Director Emily House (TDHS Appointee)
  • Bishop Edward Stephens, Golden Gate Cathedral and Golden Gate Development Corporation CEO (TDHS Appointee)
  • Rep. David Hawk (Speaker of the House Appointee)
  • Rep. Bryan Terry (Speaker of the House Appointee)
  • Sen. Bo Watson
  • Sen. Raumesh Akbari
  • Jerry Askew, Alliance for Better Nonprofits - Knoxville (Co-Chair)

*Appointees from the Business Community and Non-profit Community will be added to the board.

Board Meetings

The Families First Community Advisory Board (FFCAB) meets every third Tuesday of the month* and members of the public are permitted to attend board meetings in-person or view board meetings streaming online.

*The FFCAB will meet on the second Tuesday of December.

September 21, 2021 1 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Nashville Room of the Tennessee Tower
312 Rosa L Parks Blvd. in Nashville
This meeting will also be available to view online, by clicking here. 

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