Administration Staff

Herb Byrd

Herb Byrd
Vice President

After attending Harding College (Searcy, Ark.) for two years, Herb Byrd received his bachelor’s degree in Animal Science, master’s degree in Reproductive Physiology and PhD in Educational Leadership, all from The University of Tennessee. Most of his professional career (almost 29 years) has been spent with his alma mater in UT Extension. Herb began his extension career as a 4-H agent in Monroe County. He then worked in McMinn County for seven years in Adult Agriculture & Resource Development while serving as county director. In a two-year stint away from extension, Herb was a vice president with Lads to Leaders, Inc. where he conducted workshops teaching adults how to teach leadership skills to youth.
Since returning to UT Extension's state office in 1998, Herb has been responsible for recruitment, personnel, and civil rights and serves as extension's affirmative action and EEO officer. In addition, he is also the director of the extension evaluation and staff development department, organized July 1, 2003. Before his appointment as interim vice president of the Institute for Public Service, he was also the human resources officer for the Institute for Agriculture. He has served on the staff of the University of Tennessee's Leadership Institute since 1999. Byrd was named vice president of IPS in September 2015.


Chuck Shoopman
Assistant Vice President

Chuck Shoopman is assistant vice president with the UT Institute for Public Service (IPS). He leads the organization’s efforts to help business and government leaders improve job retention, promote job growth, strengthen leadership capacity and build stronger, safer communities. Before rejoining UT in 2004, he worked for more than 10 years with the Tennessee Valley Authority’s economic development organization. While at TVA he served in a variety of leadership roles, including acting vice president of economic development. Chuck currently serves as past-president of the University Economic Development Association (UEDA), representing more than 150 member institutions across the U.S., and he is a member of the Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence (TNCPE) board of directors. 



Steve Thompson
Assistant Vice President

Steve Thompson is assistant vice president with the Institute for Public Service. Steve joined the university as executive director of the Municipal Technical Advisory Service in July of 2010.  A former city manager with cities in South Carolina, Virginia and Florida, Steve has extensive experience in a wide range of services and projects impacting small to large local governments, and has emphasized success with development, financial management and community partnerships. Steve is also a current member of the Governmental Accounting Standards Advisory Council, the national advisory board to the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB).



Gail White
Chief Business Officer

Gail came to the IPS chief business officer position in March 2011 after 17 years of experience in the UT Controller's Office as assistant controller where she specialized in sponsored project administration and accounting, financial reporting and analyses, IRIS, and training. Gail received a bachelor's degree in business administration with a major in accounting from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and is a certified public accountant. Gail grew up on Fort Loudon Lake in Lenoir City where she enjoyed swimming and water skiing. Gail has numerous hobbies including reading, walking, traveling, home improvement projects, and gardening.  Her fiance, Wayne, is professor of music and director of bands at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, TX so she spends quite a bit of time traveling to Texas. Gail has an 18 year old calico cat named Babe who is totally deaf and sleeps all the time. Gail's brothers and parents live in Lenoir City and Loudon.


Thaddeus Grace
Business Manager


Scott Gordy
Chief Information Officer

Scott came to work at the institute in January 2001 after working for for the state of Mississippi for 10 years where he was a consultant and information technology administrator for both information technology services and the Mississippi Highway Patrol. Growing up with a father in the military, Scott had the opportunity to travel across the United States of America as well as Germany where he attended high school.


Jill Marling
Admin. Coordinator

Jill came to UT in April 1987 where she worked in the history department for five years before moving to IPS in October 1992. Jill and her husband Ron have one son who is very active in sports. Currently Jill is working to complete her Bachelors online with UT Martin.


Tomi Rogers
HR/ Operations Manager

Tomi Rogers began her career in Human Resources with a focus on learning & development at the University of Tennessee in 2001. During her career, she has developed and facilitated professional development programs on a variety of topics, which include leadership, supervision, effective communication, and teambuilding. Her passion for helping and empowering others has fueled her enrollment into UTC’s Learning and Leadership doctoral program.


Susan Robertson
Information Specialist II

Susan joined IPS in January 2008 after spending three years serving as a communications manager with Scripps Networks. A native of Roanoke, Va., she graduated from East Tennessee State University with a bachelor's degree in communication (journalism). She also worked as a reporter with The Mountain Press newspaper in Sevierville, account executive with two Knoxville public relations agencies and as public relations director/assistant general manager with a minor league hockey team.



Hannah Holder
Communications Specialist

Hannah joined IPS as a graphic designer in June 2016. She is a graduate of UT Knoxville. 


Lori Barton
Accounting Specialist



Christine Anderson
Admin. Specialist III

Christine serves as the Administrative Support Specialist for the IPS Jackson office. 


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