September Monthly Meeting

Register for Tuesday, September 22, 2015

“Green Meetings Panel Discussion”


Drew Thurman

Compliance Manager

Knox County Office of Solid Waste

Drew Thurman

Elizabeth Hanna

Environmental Programs Analyst

Knoxville Utilities Board

L Hannah

Dobbin Callahan

Tennessee Green Hospitality

President, Skye Con

Dobbin Callahan

Moderated by Jim Johnson, CMP

Please Register ASAP, but no later than Friday, September 18 by replying to

Location   Hosted by Rebecca Williams and

Sponsored by the Knoxville Convention Center

701 Henley Street, Knoxville, TN 37902




10:00 a.m. Board Meeting (All Members Welcome)

11:30 a.m. Registration/Networking

12:00 Noon Lunch

12:15 – 1:15 p.m.   “Green Meetings Panel Discussion”

Cost To Attend:

Planner Members                                        $ 25.00

First Time Planner Non-Members      No Charge

Supplier Members                                         $ 30.00

Supplier Non-Members                             $ 35.00


Green Meetings are based on a sustainability framework which balances environmental, economic, and social impacts in context of an organization’s business needs. Green Meetings are not only desirable but also very attainable. The Panelists for today’s program are all involved in sustainability programs and efforts and their knowledge will benefit both Planners and Suppliers. Plan to attend this event to increase your knowledge of your role in the Green Meetings Industry.

Drew Thurman

Drew Thurman earned his Bachelors in Sociology, and a Master’s of Science in Planning from the University of Tennessee. Upon graduation he joined the United States Peace Corps in 2002 to serve as an Environmental Volunteer in Romania. Drew returned in 2006 to work in rural emergency 911 preparedness and later as a FEMA contractor providing logistical support for emergency preparedness and disaster relief. In 2008 Drew was hired as the Knox County Recycling Coordinator and was later promoted in 2010 to Contract Compliance Manager where he oversees departmental and contractor compliance with rules, regulations, and contractors’ deliverables. As a professional working in sustainability Drew chaired the Goods and Services work group for the City of Knoxville Sustainability Task Force and has been the chair Knoxville’s premier Earth Day Celebration called EarthFest since 2008. EarthFest is a low impact event that strives for zero waste. In 2014 Drew Thurman was elected to the Three Rivers Market Food Co-op Board, Tennessee’s only food cooperative. Drew Thurman and his wife Jennifer enjoy travel, biking, and growing vegetables in their garden.

Liz Hannah

Liz Hannah works as an Environmental Programs analyst for the Knoxville Utilities Board and has been with KUB for eight years. Prior to her role in Environmental Programs, Liz served as KUB’s lead forester and was responsible for ensuring tree pruning work was completed in compliance with Arbor Day Foundation Tree Line USA Utility guidelines. Liz is now working on new environmental initiatives to strengthen KUB’s legacy of environmental responsibility. Liz earned a bachelor’s degree in Forestry from University of Tennessee, a master’s degree in Range Science from Utah State University, and worked as an extension agent before coming to KUB. She is an International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist and utility specialist.

Dobbin Callahan

​Auditor and Administrator for TENNESSEE GREEN HOSPITALITY

For Dobbin Callahan, environmental stewardship is more than just a current interest, it is a lifelong passion. He, has promoted and practiced environmental responsibility since growing up in rural North Carolina. Prior to forming Skye Con, Callahan worked in the textile and carpet industry, focusing on government procurement and issues of sustainability. He has traveled throughout the U.S. and abroad speaking on the topics of “Environmental Responsibility,” “Environmental Initiatives as Part of the Corporate Culture,” and “Product Stewardship.”   He testified before the US Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on the effectiveness of Federal programs for purchasing of recycled content products.

Callahan is the administrator and auditor for Tennessee Green Hospitality, a program offered through The Tennessee Hospitality and Tourism Association helping hotels, restaurants and attractions to become more sustainable in their operations. Facilities meeting the standards of the program are then Certified “Tennessee Green Hospitality.” To date, over 80 facilities in Tennessee have been certified.

BA, Economics, Davidson College

MBA, The University of Tennessee

Certificate in Environmental Management Systems, George Washington University

Past Chair, National Recycling Coalition

Past President, Buy Recycled Business Alliance

Past Chair, GSA Quality Partnership Council

Chair, GCHA Green Committee