The Nelson and Sue Andrews Institute for Civic Leadership at Lipscomb University


L. Randolph Lowry

Lipscomb University

Dr. Lowry took office as Lipscomb University's 17th president Sept. 26, 2005. Connecting the university to the Nashville community has been a hallmark of Dr. Lowry's presidency at Lipscomb.

In September 2005, Dr. Lowry proposed Lipscomb 2010, a $54 million plan to dramatically advance Lipscomb's academic programs and to invest in new campus facilities. As a result of Lipscomb 2010, a College of Pharmacy was established creating the first Lipscomb doctorate degree; 38 new undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs were developed; and six new institutes were established in conflict management; sustainable practice; law, justice and society; Christian spirituality; corporate governance and integrity; and civic leadership. This plan also included the renovation of several academic and residence buildings on campus. Under Dr. Lowry's leadership, the university has experienced a 70 percent enrollment growth, hired 161 full-time faculty and has risen through the U.S. News & World Report rankings to an all-time high of 18th for the university.

For more than twenty years, Dr. Lowry has been one of the nation's leaders in the dispute resolution field.  After establishing an innovative program at Willamette University School of Law in Salem, Oregon, he founded the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University School of Law. The Straus Institute has been named the number one graduate program of its kind for eight consecutive years, achieving the number one ranking by U.S. News & World Report 11 out of the last 16 years.  In 2004, he formalized his long-standing consulting and training practice into the firm now called Strategic Resolutions Group, LLC. A lawyer, mediator, author, consultant and teacher, he has served clients in conflict management consulting, systems design and training in more than 40 states and on six continents.

He has been featured in a variety of national media outlets including on CNN, in Bloomberg Businessweek, the Huffington Post and Washington Monthly as a conflict management expert.

Beyond academics, Dr. Lowry is heavily involved in the Nashville community. He is a member of the Agenda for Nashville's Future, the Rotary Club of Nashville and the Middle Tennessee Council of the Boy Scouts of America's executive committee. He co-chaired the Nashville Mayor's Green Ribbon Committee, and he serves on the boards of a variety of community organizations including United Way of Metropolitan Nashville, the American Heart Association and the leadership council for the Nelson and Sue Andrews Institute for Civic Leadership. He was a member of the 2007 class of Leadership Nashville.

Recently, Dr. Lowry announced Lipscomb 2016, an initiative to invest $125 million by the university's 125th anniversary in 2016. The Lipscomb 2016 initiative includes goals to create 20 new academic programs, hire 30 full-time faculty, expand enrollment to 5,000 students, expand the global learning program and create new satellite locations throughout Middle Tennessee.


Linda Peek Schacht

Executive Director
Andrews Institute for Civic Leadership

Over a thirty-year career, Linda Peek Schacht has held the top communications position for USA Today, the US Senate Majority Leader, and The Coca-Cola Company.

She is the founding executive director of the Nelson and Sue Andrews Institute for Civic Leadership launched in 2010 at Lipscomb University.

Peek Schacht was a senior fellow from 2002-2006 at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government and led the organizational and political communication department at Emerson College 2004-2007.

For over a decade at The Coca-Cola Company in New York and Atlanta, she advised three chairmen on communication, represented the company at the World Economic Forum and helped shape the corporate social responsibility movement before retiring as vice president, global communications and public affairs strategy in 2002.

A Carter White House press officer and campaign press secretary for the 1980 presidential re-election campaign, she was later communications director for the U.S. Senate Democratic Policy Committee and spokesperson for the Majority Leader, where she staffed several bipartisan Senate delegations and played key communication roles in four Democratic conventions.

The first public affairs director of USA Today, she has been a long time board member of the International Women's Media Foundation. She is a graduate of Lipscomb University and The Ohio State University.

She is the widow of sports artist and writer Mike Schacht.


Tom Ingram

Board Secretary
Leadership Tennessee

Ingram is founder of The FIRST Group in Washington, D.C., and The Ingram Group in Nashville. His current clients include Gaylord, National Healthcare Corporation, Eastman Chemical, Corrections Corporation of America, Louisiana Pacific, Google, Exxon, General Electric and American Airlines.

Ingram spent most of the last decade as a top aide to Senate Republicans, holding the dual roles of chief of staff to Alexander and staff director for the Senate Republican Conference. As staff director, Ingram was responsible for working with Alexander to craft the Republican message in concert with priorities set by the Republican leadership. While serving in Washington, he co-founded a highly successful bipartisan Senate Chiefs of Staff group that regularly brings together a majority of the 100 Senate chiefs to explore how they and their bosses can work together to foster common ground in developing and passing legislation. Ingram was regularly named by Roll Call as one of its "Fabulous Fifty" most influential people on the Hill.

Ingram landed several times in the private sector — first as founder and president of The Ingram Group in 1983, later as director at Whittle Communications and as CEO of the Knoxville Area Chamber Partnership. His noted expertise in crisis management and strategic thinking was first sharpened in 1979 when his former boss, newly elected Tennessee Governor Lamar Alexander, was notified that he would be sworn in early because of a developing scandal in the previous administration. Just named the deputy governor and chief of staff, Ingram immediately put together a strategy that forged the right message, neutralized naysayers and made friends out of old enemies. Alexander went on to serve two terms and has been called one of the state's most popular governors. In 2002, he rejoined Alexander to run his successful campaign for the United States Senate. In March 2010, he joined three other former Senate chiefs in founding The FIRST Group, the Washington, D.C. office of The Ingram Group.


Cathy Cate

Executive Director
Leadership Tennessee

Cathy is a native of Maryville, TN. Prior to her move to Middle Tennessee in 2011, Cathy served for six years as Executive Director of Leadership Blount County with a focus on educating local leaders on issues affecting Blount County and the region including education, sustained growth, health care and environmental issues.

Cathy has twenty years experience with the outdoor, leadership training and development company Mountain Challenge at Maryville College developing course outcomes and facilitating groups in ropes course and indoor, leadership exercises and served as Assistant Dean of Students at Maryville College in the 1990s.

Cathy holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in American Studies and a Masters in Science in Higher Education both from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Cathy has spent many years serving as a volunteer and in leadership capacities for organizations such as the Tennessee Association of Community Leadership, East Tennessee Regional Leadership, American Cancer Society, Family Promise of Blount County, Junior Service League of Blount County and most recently with the newly-formed Williamson County Education Foundation, the Oasis Center of Nashville and the Tennessee Residence Foundation.