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 nations 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 Imagination Library mails over one million specially selected, age-appropriate books monthly to registered children from birth to age five.
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.
Chief Executive Officer
David is a non voting member of the board and is responsible for all aspects of the day to day activities of the Foundation
Jeff came to the Foundation in 2011 from the Governor’s Books From Birth Foundation, DWF’s partner in providing the Imagination Library across the state of Tennessee. He is responsible for all of the programmatic and financial aspects of the Foundation’s work in the United States.
Craig Ross is the President of the Dollywood Company responsible for all of the Dollywood businesses in the Great Smoky Mountains region including the Dollywood theme park, Dollywood’s Splash Country water park, Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins and Dollywood's DreamMore Resort
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 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.
Board Member since 2015 CEO - Herschend Enterprises
In his current role, Wexler leads Herschend Enterprises, which includes Herschend Family Enterprises, Herschend Live, Herschend Entertainment Studios and Herschend Adventure Travel.
2007 - Present
Herschend Enterprises, CEO (205 to Present) and CFO (2007 - 2014)
2005 - 2007
Martin Capital, Chief Operating Officer
2003 - 2005
McKinsey & Co, Consultant
1998 - 2003
Derivion, Co-Founder, CFO and EVP – Strategy
1993 - 1995
Arthur Anderson, Accountant
MBA, Harvard Business School
Macc, University of Georgia
BBA. University of Georgia