Who We Are

The Tennessee Baptist Foundation is a 501(c)3 corporation chartered by the State of Tennessee and directed by a 15-member Board of Trustees elected by The Tennessee Baptist Convention.

Our Staff

Bill Gruenewald


Bill joined the foundation in 2011 as the Executive Vice President and was promoted to President-Treasurer in 2014. Bill holds a BS degree in accounting and an MBA from Tennessee Tech University. He also holds a Master of Religious Education degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is an ordained minister and a member of Forest Hills Baptist Church in Nashville. He was a Certified Church Administrator (CCA) with the National Association of Church Business Administration from 2009-2017. Bill is married to Betsy Reid. He also has one son, William (Jill), who is serving in ministry in Arkansas and a granddaughter and a grandson.

Christopher L. Kelly, Esq.

Executive Vice President and General Counsel

Chris joined the Foundation in 2014. Having twenty-seven years of financial and legal experience, he holds a BS degree (with honors) from Middle Tennessee State University in Political Science and a Juris Doctorate (J.D.) from the Nashville School of Law. He is a graduate of the Southern Trust School at Spring Hill College. Admitted to practice before all courts in Tennessee, Chris is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association (Estate Planning/Probate and Tax Law sections) and the Christian Legal Society. He was recently recognized as an Attorney for Justice by the Tennessee Supreme Court for pro bono service.   He is a member of Third Baptist Church of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where he teaches adult Sunday School and serves as a deacon. He is married to Kim, and they have two teenage daughters who are awesome dancers!

Bonnie B. Sneed

Administrative Assistant & Corporate Secretary

Bonnie joined the foundation staff in November, 1988. She is a graduate of Belmont University in Nashville. She is married (Tim) and has two sons. She is a member of Judson Baptist Church. Hobbies include reading and gardening.

Teresa J. Garrett


Teresa joined the foundation staff in June, 1980. She attended MiddleTennessee State University, Belmont University and Nashville Technical Institute. She is married (Jimmy) and has one daughter (Karen) and one grandson. She is a member of Judson Baptist Church. Hobbies include cooking, reading and cross-stitching.

Melinda Walker


Melinda joined the Foundation in September, 2019. Melinda holds a B.S. Degree in Accounting from Georgetown College and comes to us with 30 years of experience in both privately held and public companies. She is a member of Forest Hills Baptist Church, where she currently serves on the Greeter Team. She is married to Mark and has one son, Seth. When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with family and friends. She loves traveling, baking and trying out any new restaurant.


The Foundation needs qualified and competent people to help promote its work with Tennessee Baptists, ensure accountability to Tennessee Baptists, establish and oversee policies by which the Foundation operates and monitor the investment and management of funds entrusted to the Foundation’s care. Trustees are expected to:

  • Attend orientation planned by The Tennessee Baptist Convention as well as an orientation session planned by the Foundation.
  • Attend the Annual Trustee’s Meeting in December, Semi Annual Meeting in May, as well as any other meeting which might be necessary.
  • Attend and actively participate in the meetings of the committees to which they are assigned.
  • Support the work and ministry of the Foundation with their prayers, time, and expertise.

Serving as a Foundation trustee is both an honor and a sacred trust. The counsel and faithful service of the trustees greatly strengthens the Foundation’s work. The confidence, support and friendship of those we serve are essential to the Foundation’s ministry and progress.

Board of Trustees 2018-2019

The Board of Trustees for the Tennessee Baptist Foundation are elected by the Convention and charged with giving oversight to the integrity and work of the Foundation. Each trustee is an active member of his or her local Baptist church. Because the Foundation is a financial institution its board members are heavily weighted from various financial backgrounds. Our trustees do a marvelous job blending and balancing the spiritual nature of our task with sound financial policies and practices.

Miles Shackleford 
First Baptist Church Hendersonville, Investment Director Lifeway Christian Resources

Lisa Francisco (Chair)  
Forest Hills Baptist Church, Nashville, Church Business Administrator

Joe Day 
First Baptist Church, Cleveland, Retired Naval Officer and Church Administrator

Robert Caldwell (Secretary)
First Baptist Church, Kingsport, Engineer and Business Owner

Joe Brasher
Englewood Baptist Church, Jackson, Retired Banker

Tom Crow
First Baptist Church, Nashville, Executive Pastor

Laura Byrd
West Jackson Baptist Church, Jackson, Banker Commercial Bank and Trust

Bob Alvey (Vice Chair)
Englewood Baptist Church, Jackson, retired, Proctor and Gamble

Bobby Hancock
Bellevue Baptist Church, Cordova, CEO Cord, Inc

Chad Keaton
Wallace Memorial Baptist, Knoxville, Financial Planner

Phil Jones
The Gathering@840, Franklin, Administrative Pastor

Tony Nix,
First Baptist Church, Greeneville, Consultant

Jamie King
First Baptist Church, Jackson, Financial Advisor

Michael Miller
First Baptist Church, Dickson, Senior Pastor