Meet the 2017-2018 JLN Leadership!

Whitney Goetz, Treasurer

Hometown: Johnson City, TN

Occupation: Government and Legislative Affairs Manager

School Spirit: Go VOLS!

Why Nashville? My husband and I met while working on Capitol Hill in DC. We are both native Tennesseans and knew we eventually wanted to move back home to TN. Job opportunities brought us to Nashville and I am so thankful!

Preferred Social Media: Instagram (@WhitRaye)

When did you become a member of JLN? After years of “encouragement” from my mother (who was a League Member in the 90s), I agreed to attend a prospective member session only a few months after I moved to Nashville. I joined the 2013-2014 Provisional class.

Favorite Placement: Treasurer, of course! 🙂 I also enjoyed serving as a Project Chair for the Nashville Public Library to support the great work our members do for NPL.

In connection with the theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV? I love HGTV! I’ve been a Chip and JoAnna Gaines fan since Season 1 and wish that Erin Napier (from Home Town) was my friend in real life.

Why did you take on your current role? I entered the process with an open mind to opportunities that would be a good fit for my skill set. I’ve worked in Finance policy for a number of years and when selected to be Treasurer, I felt honored! I’m looking forward to this opportunity to serve on the Board and expand my leadership experience in the League. The Board and Management Team are a dynamic group of women with a heart for the League, our members and service to our Community.

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? Be encouraging and say yes when opportunities are presented to you. Agree to take on leadership roles, attend trainings to better yourself, meet other women in the League and build new relationships – just say yes to being an active part of the League because it will enrich your experience! I have a dear friend who invited me to attend that initial prospective member meeting and she was the same person who encouraged me to apply to be Treasurer. When you see a friend who may have leadership potential, encourage her to explore those opportunities. Sometimes that is all someone needs to become more involved!

Megan Koontz, VP of MARCOM

Hometown: Lorena, Texas

Occupation: Manager, Walk MS – National MS Society

School Spirit: Baylor University

Why Nashville? Why not Nashville? 😉 Because I fall more in love with the music, food, culture, history, outdoors, people, HOCKEY, every single day.

Preferred Social Media: Instagram. @baylormegs

When did you become a member of JLN? Summer 2013

Favorite Placement: MARCOM Consultant Chair, thus far…

Favorite Places in Nashville: east side breweries, Phonoluxe records on a rainy day, with my pup on the greenway, walking 12 South, Two Rivers Dog Park, anywhere with tacos

In connection with the theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV? I have mixed feelings… and Fixer Upper is sort of overrated–although, as a Waco girl, I’ll admit to watching it when I’m homesick.

Why did you take on your current role? Because I love the vision and energy set forth by my preceding VP (heyyy, Becky!) and I love applying my experience on a team of those who are as impassioned as I am to communicate our JLN messages to membership and the community.

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? Your experience is 100% what you make it–get outside your comfort zone, learn as much as you can and meet as many people as you can. You will flourish when you consciously invest in this organization, and you will meet some magnificent people along the way.

Katherine Lay Miller, Active Director

Hometown: Chattanooga, TN

Occupation: Fundraiser, mom of three children (ages 14, 10 and 8)

School Spirit: Can I change this to Team Spirit? Go Sequoia Cyclone Divers!

Why Nashville? The music, arts, creativity scene

Preferred Social Media: Instagram @katelizabeth13

When did you become a member of JLN? Active in 2006

Favorite Placement: Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital

Favorite Places in Nashville: Breakfast: Le Peep, Lunch: Harding House, Brunch: Germantown Cafe, Dinner: 5th & Taylor, Pre-dinner Drinks: Cellar at Sutler, Post-dinner drinks: L.A. Jackson, Wine: Barcelona Edgehill, Patio: Le Sel, Anytime Restaurant: Firefly, Workout: BAR Method, Yoga: Sanctuary, Park for a hike: Percy Warner Park, Park with the children: Sevier Park, Family-day: Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, Family-night: Nashville Sounds in the summer & Predators any other time of the year, Radio station: Lightning 100, it’s independent and promotes our local artists

In connection with the theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV? I’m more of a National Geographic, Animal Planet, Discovery channel type person.

Why did you take on your current role? The League has been an incredibly important presence in my life for over a decade now, and it has given me professional development, personal development and friendships that I would not have otherwise. I felt it only appropriate to give back to the League in a meaningful way what I can of what it has given me. I am honored to serve as an advocate for Active members as a Director on the Board of Governance, and look forward to utilizing the skills the League has developed in me over the years. I want to encourage members to reach out to the Active Directors at any point throughout the year, as that is why we serve in this capacity.

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? Your experience with the League is yours, and yours alone. It will be what you make of it, so make it great! Show up to events, be engaged, seize opportunities to make the community better, but also to better yourself. Attend trainings. Apply for Young Leaders Council, if your schedule allows. Get to know the woman sitting next to you at a meeting, or working alongside you in the community. I guarantee you can learn something interesting from her, and she from you. Simply asking her “why did you join the League?” can open the door to a remarkable connection.

Emily Prather, Nominating Chair

Hometown: Louisville, KY

Occupation: Editor, mom

School Spirit: Vanderbilt

Why Nashville? Fell in love with the city while doing my undergrad at Vandy
Preferred Social Media: I don’t use it!

When did you become a member of JLN: 2008

Favorite Placement: Nominating

Favorite Places in Nashville: Grace Chapel, my home, Barnes & Noble, Parnassus, the library

In connection with the theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV? The novelty can wear off quickly, but I have to admit to a fascination with House Hunters International

Why did you take on your current role? I loved my placement on Nominating a few years ago and knew then that I would want to do it again! It’s a privilege to work with a group of women to shape the future leadership composition of the League.

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? Get involved! Your League experience will be as fulfilling as you make it. Show up for stuff, be unafraid to try new things, take on leadership roles, and enjoy!

Jillian Frist, Sustainer Director

Hometown: I am a Yankee on paper and southern by drawl. I have lived in Nashville since I was 6mos old and born in Buffalo, NY

Occupation: Senior Managing Consultant

Why Nashville? Why leave? I remember when you only went downtown to go to the Spaghetti Factory and there were tumbleweeds rolling down 2nd Ave. What a thriving city we now live in!

Preferred Social Media: I am of the Facebook generation

When did you become a member of JLN: 2001

Favorite Placement: President

Favorite Places in Nashville: I am a foodie and so excited about the options and variety we have now in Nashville. There are so many good options its hard to pick! I like to mix it up. If we go downtown to an event I rotate between Etch, Farmhouse, 404 Kitchen, and Fin & Pearl among many good options.

In connection with the theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV?What do JLN and HGTV have in common…. If you are not careful you will be roped in and it will be difficult to stop watching/doing! To me HGTV is taking something you love and making it better, giving it a fresh coat of paint. The theme of JLNxDesign speaks to that as it relates to our members and evolving their experiences in the league.

Why did you take on your current role? There is so much history in the JL and I am such an advocate, especially as we near 100 years, to help keep it alive. Every year I have worked with some amazing women, and after being less involved as a sustainer I enjoy being back on the Board with smart women who care about training our members to be volunteers to make an impact in the community.

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? You get out of it what you put into it. Show up, be present, and don’t be scared to step up.

Taryn Anderson, Executive Vice President

Hometown: White Bear Lake, MN

Occupation: Recovering accountant and now part time work for a law firm and student

School Spirit: University of Saint Thomas in Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN

Why Nashville? Moved here in July 2005 for a boy and while we didn’t stay together, it was much warmer down here in the winters and I loved the job I was at so I didn’t move back home.

Preferred Social Media: Instagram, @tkanderson

When did you become a member of JLN? I joined the Junior League of Nashville in 2008 and became an active in 2009!

Favorite Placement: So many. Krystal said Provisional Co-Chair because that was the year we met and fell in love, so that’s up there. I also enjoyed being VP of Operations on the Board with Laura Creekmore and well there is nominating where you really get to kind of see the behind the scenes work!

In connect with theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV? I love HGTV … it makes me feel like the projects are super easy and that I can take them on myself … even though I’m not really handy. I’m going to be doing more projects around my house so ask me this question at the end of the year … either it’ll be super successful and my house will look awesome … or I had to pay a contractor to fix all my mistakes and I’ll be ticked!

Why did you take on the role of EVP? I’m not 100% sure yet … kidding! I think the most meaningful years I’ve had in the Junior League have been leadership positions, you really get to know the other women you’re working with and it does create a special bond. Knowing that I would be able to continue to work along side with Clark was a big reason. She is a fierce woman and I just have really enjoyed working with her. I think when you can be challenged with the people you work with it only helps you as a person grow. She is definitely a lot different than I am so why not learn from one of the best!? There are a lot of things that I knew she would tackle that I thought would be good for the League to continue to evolve and stay relevant and I’m behind those changes!

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? It is really easy to focus on what you need to do to complete your requirements but I would tell you to try as much as you can. There is a reason the curriculum of whatever you’re attending was put together the way it was …. there must be something that you should be taking away from what you’re attending. If you don’t know it or can’t see it ask! Get involved and remember why you joined the League. Whether it is to volunteer, meet new friends, the League’s main focus is to develop women in our community and to serve our community – do not lose sight of that.

Krystal Clark, President

Hometown: Portsmouth, VA

Occupation: Director of Student Leadership Development at Vanderbilt University

School Spirit: College of William & Mary and University of Maryland, College Park

Why Nashville? Moved here in July 2011 for a job at Vanderbilt University and it was the best decision of my life.

Preferred Social Media: Instagram, @krystalnclark

When did you become a member of JLN? I joined the Junior League of Durham and Orange Counties (JLDOC) in 2008 and transferred here in 2011.

Favorite Placement: Provisional Co-Chair

Favorite Places in Nashville: Ryman Auditorium, Belcourt Theatre, Schermerhorn Symphony Hall, the Tennessee State Museum, a patio in good weather, and so many more.

In connection with the theme of JLNxDesign, what are your feelings about HGTV? I love Hometown with Erin and Ben Napier. I love that they use people’s existing pieces when they decorate the new house. It’s kind of a great metaphor for life. We all have what we need to be successful but sometimes, it just needs to be polished, a new coat of paint, or just angled differently. They’re in Laurel, MS — only 5.5 hours away! JLN road trip, anyone?

Why did you take on the role of President? Why not? So many reasons that I could share, but, I believe in the mission of JLN and want to work to ensure its relevance in the city of Nashville. I think when you start asking, “what if?” or “why?” with a foundation of positive intent, genuine interest, and humility that you probably need to start examining the role you’re playing in an organization and get to a place in which you can strive to create change in relationship with others – that relationship is what we often call leadership. We have a fantastic 95-year history and our future is just as promising. Organizations that develop the potential of women serve a great purpose in this world and I know the League has and will continue to change the lives of women in Nashville.

What advice would you give the newest members of JLN? Show up. Half the battle is just being in the room and making sure that you are physically present. The other half is being mentally present and allowing yourself to be engaged with and open to the people and the opportunities that surround you. You’re a member which means that you’re officially invited to partake in the experiences offered. Get into it! Nothing is ever going to happen and you’ll never reap the rewards of membership if you never fully show up to the organization.