The Dollywood Foundation – United States
Board of Directors
Dolly Parton is a worldwide icon with unprecedented success in music, entertainment, business and philanthropy. Including her eight Grammy Awards, Dolly is the most honored female country performer of all time. Yet her achievements transcend her entertainment career.
In 1999 Dolly was inducted as a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. She has her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and became a member of the National Academy of Popular Music Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2001. Broadcast Music Inc. honored her with their Icon Award in 2003, and in 2004 the U.S. Library of Congress presented her with their Living Legend Award for her contribution to the cultural heritage of the United States. This was followed in 2005 with the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor given by the U.S. government for excellence in the arts.
As a businesswoman, she flourishes with a talent to produce some of the nation's best family-friendly entertainment attractions including Dollywood, DreamMore Resort, Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede, Pirates Voyage and Smoky Mountain Adventures.
In 1995, Dolly launched an exciting new effort, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, to benefit the children of her home county in East Tennessee, USA. Inspired by her father, Dolly’s vision was to foster a love of reading among her county’s preschool children and their families.
Dolly's dream grew year by year and country by country and today her specially selected, age-appropriate books reach unprecedented numbers of children from birth to age five around the world.
Ted leads Dolly Parton Productions and represents Dolly in her various business interests across the country. Ted forged the partnership which created Dollywood in 1986.
David is the former CEO of The Dollywood Foundation, having led the foundation for over 20 years. He now works on special projects for Dolly and her businesses.
Jeff joined the Foundation in 2011 and leads the efforts to fulfill its global mission. Jeff is a member of the Board of Directors and is responsible for all aspects of the Foundation's planning, strategy, finance and team.
Craig Ross is the former President of the Dollywood Company, responsible for all of the Dollywood businesses in the Great Smoky Mountains region from 2010-2020. He now is the COO of The Herschend Family Entertainment Growth and Opportunity Group, supporting the acquisition of new theme parks, aquariums and attractions, and investment partners to fund expansion.
Charles Kite is an attorney residing in Knoxville, TN. He holds a law degree from the University of Tennessee, College of Law. Charles has practiced law for over 40 years and has served as General Counsel for the Dollywood Company.
Jo is a founding member of the Board. Jo has been active in many charitable efforts in east Tennessee serving on the boards of the Knoxville Symphony, Baptist Hospital Foundation, and Alzheimer’s Association.
A founding member of the board, Edna was Tennessee’s Teacher of the Year in 1989 and an inductee to the National Teachers Hall of Fame . She is an active member of the National State Teachers of the Year organization and leads the annual selection of process for the Chasing Rainbows Award. This award is presented each year by Dolly to a teacher who has overcome daunting obstacles to inspire students and change lives.
Currently a consultant in the theme park industry, Ken is the former President of the Dollywood Company and board member for Dolly Parton's Stampede.
Rachel Parton George
Rachel Parton George has played a variety of roles in not only the Parton family, but also in Dolly Parton's various businesses. She is a key representative of Dolly and the family in personal as well as business matters.
Since 2015, Andrew Wexler has served as the CEO of Herschend Enterprises, a privately owned themed-entertainment company that operates several theme parks and tourist attractions within the United States. He was CFO of Herschend Enterprises from 2007-2014 and has a background in business finance.
Crissy Haslam is the former First Lady of Tennessee from 2011-2019, focusing much of her work across the state on family engagement and literacy. She has been a leading voice for Tennessee's statewide Imagination Library effort as well as a champion of a number of causes supporting children and families.